Al's Breakfast

★★★★☆
  • 413 14th Ave SE

    Minneapolis, MN 55414

    Map & Directions
  • 612-331-9991

Food

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Al's breakfast is an experience. The food is good and the staff is fun. But the main reason to go to Al's is to say you waited in line forever for a stool to sit on in a closet-sized restaurant.

4
★★★★☆

Al's breakfast is an experience. The food is good and the staff is fun. But the main reason to go to Al's is to say you waited in line forever for a stool to sit on in a closet-sized restaurant.

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.

For a pair of cities with not a lot of great breakfast places, Al's is a sure thing.

Whatever you order, french toast, omeletes, hasbrowns.....you can't lose.

2
★★★★★

For a pair of cities with not a lot of great breakfast places, Al's is a sure thing.

Whatever you order, french toast, omeletes, hasbrowns.....you can't lose.

.

A truly unique little place. The staff was all extremely friendly and actually sincere about it. The food was delicious. I had the Eggs Jose (a heap of hashbrowns, poached eggs, chedder cheese,and salsa) and the blueberry pancakes. Everything was great...
The previous two reviewers mentioned the staff was mean. I did not experience this whatsoever. Maybe the staff has changed, or maybe I just followed the rules (check to see if it's ok to sit before you do, don't use your cellphone in the restaurant). Either way, great place...

2
★★★★★

A truly unique little place. The staff was all extremely friendly and actually sincere about it. The food was delicious. I had the Eggs Jose (a heap of hashbrowns, poached eggs, chedder cheese,and salsa) and the blueberry pancakes. Everything was great...
The previous two reviewers mentioned the staff was mean. I did not experience this whatsoever. Maybe the staff has changed, or maybe I just followed the rules (check to see if it's ok to sit before you do, don't use your cellphone in the restaurant). Either way, great place...

Pros: prices, food, ambience

Cons: small wait (20 mins.) on weekends

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waited for an hour w/ my young kids. Omeletes were over cooked and nothing to write home about. My hashbrowns were too well done and the oj was warm. I think people rave about this place because they feel like idiots for waiting so long for mediocre food...

3
★★★☆☆

waited for an hour w/ my young kids. Omeletes were over cooked and nothing to write home about. My hashbrowns were too well done and the oj was warm. I think people rave about this place because they feel like idiots for waiting so long for mediocre food...

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.

Although you have to stand in line to wait for a stool to sit at the counter, it is well worth it. All of the food here is amazing; the pancakes, the omelette's, the hashbrowns and french toast are fantastic. It has won the James Bearde Award, enough said.

5
★★★★★

Although you have to stand in line to wait for a stool to sit at the counter, it is well worth it. All of the food here is amazing; the pancakes, the omelette's, the hashbrowns and french toast are fantastic. It has won the James Bearde Award, enough said.

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I actually created an account on citysearch just to write this... I've been going to Al's regularly since my days as an undergrad at the U of M. I'm 30 now. In the last 12 years I've come to know the difference between typical Al's 'service' and 'meanness.' The service used to be endearing, almost as worth the visit as the food. But it's gotten worse and when we went there recently, it crossed the line. My wife (who is 6 months pregnant) and I went in there for breakfast for a special occasion. We did the standard wait-in-line-for-10+ minutes thing and then went to sit down when it was our turn. Mind you, I know the protocol. The rude man behind the corner- who I've encountered before and always seems mad at the world- yelled at my wife and I not once, but TWICE, for trying to sit down before he said it was okay to do so. Note: there was nobody in front of us and where we ended up sitting is exactly where we attempted to sit in the first place. And it wasn't like he cleaned up the spot before we sat there. He just apparently really wanted the power to tell us when we can and cannot sit. Did I mention my wife was visibly pregnant? It ruined the experience completely. She, not the Al's usual that I fancy myself to be, leaned over during the meal and said "they're kind of mean here." And suddenly I couldn't defend it any more. She was right. I don't plan to go back. The service has gotten sloppy and downright mean and the food can no longer compensate for it. They've ruined what used to be a wonderful thing.
I gave Al's a '2' only because the food there really is phenomenol. I would highly recommend the blackberry pancakes if you're forced to go. I'll miss them.
I would recommend that next time you're looking for a great breakfast place, go to either French Meadow or the Zumbro cafe instead.

1
★★☆☆☆

I actually created an account on citysearch just to write this... I've been going to Al's regularly since my days as an undergrad at the U of M. I'm 30 now. In the last 12 years I've come to know the difference between typical Al's 'service' and 'meanness.' The service used to be endearing, almost as worth the visit as the food. But it's gotten worse and when we went there recently, it crossed the line. My wife (who is 6 months pregnant) and I went in there for breakfast for a special occasion. We did the standard wait-in-line-for-10+ minutes thing and then went to sit down when it was our turn. Mind you, I know the protocol. The rude man behind the corner- who I've encountered before and always seems mad at the world- yelled at my wife and I not once, but TWICE, for trying to sit down before he said it was okay to do so. Note: there was nobody in front of us and where we ended up sitting is exactly where we attempted to sit in the first place. And it wasn't like he cleaned up the spot before we sat there. He just apparently really wanted the power to tell us when we can and cannot sit. Did I mention my wife was visibly pregnant? It ruined the experience completely. She, not the Al's usual that I fancy myself to be, leaned over during the meal and said "they're kind of mean here." And suddenly I couldn't defend it any more. She was right. I don't plan to go back. The service has gotten sloppy and downright mean and the food can no longer compensate for it. They've ruined what used to be a wonderful thing.
I gave Al's a '2' only because the food there really is phenomenol. I would highly recommend the blackberry pancakes if you're forced to go. I'll miss them.
I would recommend that next time you're looking for a great breakfast place, go to either French Meadow or the Zumbro cafe instead.

Pros: All the food, especially the pancakes. Good coffee.

Cons: Service, and they only take cash or check.

.

Our friends invited us to Al's Breakfast because of the great reviews. None of us had ever been there before - and we won't be back. The wait was terrible and our party of four was separated - leaving me standing in line. Since I was on call for work, I got a phone call (on vibrate) - another taboo in this place. I was first singled out, then ridiculed behind my back - and when my wife explained the situation she was told "I don't care." The guy told our friends that "I didn't like being told what to do." The second phone call (again, on vibrate) resulted in the guy behind the counter cranking up the music really loud - disrupting the 15 other people there. I was being more than polite, listening and mumbling a few words quietly so I wouldn't disturb anyone. They apparently take cash/check only and don't have a bathroom. The food was great, however - so the place gets a "1" from us...barely. So, Mr. Grouch - tell Doug (part-owner) about your need for customer service training.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Our friends invited us to Al's Breakfast because of the great reviews. None of us had ever been there before - and we won't be back. The wait was terrible and our party of four was separated - leaving me standing in line. Since I was on call for work, I got a phone call (on vibrate) - another taboo in this place. I was first singled out, then ridiculed behind my back - and when my wife explained the situation she was told "I don't care." The guy told our friends that "I didn't like being told what to do." The second phone call (again, on vibrate) resulted in the guy behind the counter cranking up the music really loud - disrupting the 15 other people there. I was being more than polite, listening and mumbling a few words quietly so I wouldn't disturb anyone. They apparently take cash/check only and don't have a bathroom. The food was great, however - so the place gets a "1" from us...barely. So, Mr. Grouch - tell Doug (part-owner) about your need for customer service training.

Pros: Cheap breakfast eats

Cons: Lousy service, wait not worth it.

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It's not often when you find a place that serves awesome food and the atmosphere matches it perfectly. Food is always better when cooked with soul, and you can't get much better than Al's. Portions are hearty but prices are as cheap as it gets. The whole staff was unbelievably friendly and entertaining, I can't wait to go back!

2
★★★★★

It's not often when you find a place that serves awesome food and the atmosphere matches it perfectly. Food is always better when cooked with soul, and you can't get much better than Al's. Portions are hearty but prices are as cheap as it gets. The whole staff was unbelievably friendly and entertaining, I can't wait to go back!

Pros: food, people (customers and staff alike), value

.

I have loved Al's since my very first time. While in college, I was there at least once a week and got to know a lot of the staff. The atmosphere is always great, especially when Doug is cooking. Jim is great too, but Doug juggles dinosaurs and eggs. The pancakes are unbelievable, a stack of Wally Blues really gets me going. Don't be afraid if the line is out the door, as long as you are inside that door by 1pm, you will get breakfast. You may have to wait, but that's how it goes and is a right of passage.

2
★★★★★

I have loved Al's since my very first time. While in college, I was there at least once a week and got to know a lot of the staff. The atmosphere is always great, especially when Doug is cooking. Jim is great too, but Doug juggles dinosaurs and eggs. The pancakes are unbelievable, a stack of Wally Blues really gets me going. Don't be afraid if the line is out the door, as long as you are inside that door by 1pm, you will get breakfast. You may have to wait, but that's how it goes and is a right of passage.

Pros: The food, service, the tight spaces

Cons: none

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I waited a VERY hungry 60 minutes in line with my finance to get into Al's last Sunday. I read the reviews here and I wanted to check it out. It was worth every minute! The there is only one side of counter seating that faces the grill. (14 people). The staff is friendly but they love to kid around with customers that allow them too. The place is super tiny. Those waiting stand directly behind those dining (not for those that are clausterfobic) but the food makes all of this worthwile. My hashbrows and pancakes were fantastic. The pancakes melted in my mouth! I can't wait to go back up to MN to go back to Al's!

2
★★★★★

I waited a VERY hungry 60 minutes in line with my finance to get into Al's last Sunday. I read the reviews here and I wanted to check it out. It was worth every minute! The there is only one side of counter seating that faces the grill. (14 people). The staff is friendly but they love to kid around with customers that allow them too. The place is super tiny. Those waiting stand directly behind those dining (not for those that are clausterfobic) but the food makes all of this worthwile. My hashbrows and pancakes were fantastic. The pancakes melted in my mouth! I can't wait to go back up to MN to go back to Al's!

Pros: Cheap, great food with a one of a kind setting

Cons: NONE!

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With only 10 ft. of Dinkytown real estate (for the entire width of the structure!), Al's has had to focus. It's breakfast only, with a menu and fame that haven't changed in 30 years. You sit at a bar with 3.5 feet between your face and your sizzling meal, while the dude waiting for your place salivates 1 foot behind you. He's not rude. It's just that the wall is holding him there. The wooden shingles outside appear to be oozing the delicious grease which has leaked out of millions of fantastic pancakes over the years. Enjoy! Just don't bring a toddler.

5
★★★★★

With only 10 ft. of Dinkytown real estate (for the entire width of the structure!), Al's has had to focus. It's breakfast only, with a menu and fame that haven't changed in 30 years. You sit at a bar with 3.5 feet between your face and your sizzling meal, while the dude waiting for your place salivates 1 foot behind you. He's not rude. It's just that the wall is holding him there. The wooden shingles outside appear to be oozing the delicious grease which has leaked out of millions of fantastic pancakes over the years. Enjoy! Just don't bring a toddler.

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.

After a morning of watching pick-up hockey, at the Mariucci arena, which was rented out.....off to Al's we went. My first time in there, and I can say with all honesty, that I will be back. The food was well worth the crowded wait, and the people the run the joint, are top notch.

2
★★★★★

After a morning of watching pick-up hockey, at the Mariucci arena, which was rented out.....off to Al's we went. My first time in there, and I can say with all honesty, that I will be back. The food was well worth the crowded wait, and the people the run the joint, are top notch.

Pros: FOOD!, history, price

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If you like your eggs with sass, you can't go wrong with Al's. It gets a bit busy at times, but stop by and pull up a chair if you haven't. Al's is not just a breakfast joint (though they do close after breakfast), but an experience. The help can lighten your crappiest moods, and if not, the coffee and omlettes will.

2
★★★★★

If you like your eggs with sass, you can't go wrong with Al's. It gets a bit busy at times, but stop by and pull up a chair if you haven't. Al's is not just a breakfast joint (though they do close after breakfast), but an experience. The help can lighten your crappiest moods, and if not, the coffee and omlettes will.

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Al's breakfast is the type of place that you can go to alone or with a friend. If you go alone, prepare to make conversation with strangers, and feel completely comfortable sharing stories. The service is great and the environment is unmatchable. I would suggest it to anyone.

2
★★★★★

Al's breakfast is the type of place that you can go to alone or with a friend. If you go alone, prepare to make conversation with strangers, and feel completely comfortable sharing stories. The service is great and the environment is unmatchable. I would suggest it to anyone.

Pros: Friendly Service, Inexpensive, Great Location

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Look no further for a great breakfast and dining experience than this tiny, Dinkytown hole-in-the-wall. Sure the grill looks like it hasn't been cleaned in 20 years and the help doesn't think twice of tossing a barb or two across the counter, but the simple fact is you can't beat the pancakes and assortment of specialty 3 egg omlettes. Be sure to try the stack of "wally-blues", buttermilk pancakes mixed with walnuts and blueberrys. And the "spike" garlic and cheese omlette will ward off evil for at least a few days. Also, homemade hash browns with melted smokey cheddar cheese is to die for - literally! Be prepared to wait a while during busy weekend times. This is also NOT a place to go and have a relaxing breakfast. The pace is fast and elbow room at the counter is minimal. Still, it's the best breakfast in MSP!

2
★★★★★

Look no further for a great breakfast and dining experience than this tiny, Dinkytown hole-in-the-wall. Sure the grill looks like it hasn't been cleaned in 20 years and the help doesn't think twice of tossing a barb or two across the counter, but the simple fact is you can't beat the pancakes and assortment of specialty 3 egg omlettes. Be sure to try the stack of "wally-blues", buttermilk pancakes mixed with walnuts and blueberrys. And the "spike" garlic and cheese omlette will ward off evil for at least a few days. Also, homemade hash browns with melted smokey cheddar cheese is to die for - literally! Be prepared to wait a while during busy weekend times. This is also NOT a place to go and have a relaxing breakfast. The pace is fast and elbow room at the counter is minimal. Still, it's the best breakfast in MSP!

Pros: Pancakes, Egg dishes, Hash Browns!

Cons: Crowded, Very warm, no soda :-(((

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My husband and I love breakfasting out, and we have several favorites in the Twin Cities, but we always come back to Al's. The Eggs Benedict are the best in the Western Hemisphere, with the closest matches coming from the Chateau de Frontenac in Quebec, and the Roosevelt Hotel in the Bahamas. We've been enjoying the lack of ambiance here for over 40 years.

Patience required if you arrive after 6:15, but it's always worth it. Unfortunately, these days you won't get to see Al, himself, walking around serving breakfasts with our baby daughter slung over his shoulder.

2
★★★★★

My husband and I love breakfasting out, and we have several favorites in the Twin Cities, but we always come back to Al's. The Eggs Benedict are the best in the Western Hemisphere, with the closest matches coming from the Chateau de Frontenac in Quebec, and the Roosevelt Hotel in the Bahamas. We've been enjoying the lack of ambiance here for over 40 years.

Patience required if you arrive after 6:15, but it's always worth it. Unfortunately, these days you won't get to see Al, himself, walking around serving breakfasts with our baby daughter slung over his shoulder.

Pros: Food, Character, Inexpensive

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Ok...do you really love breakfast? Then, DAMNIT! You need to eat at Al's Breakfast. It's an experience you won't forget. A real mom'n pop kind of place, but good and fresh grub. You won't miss the action cause everything is right in front of you! It's not fancy, so don't dress up.

2
★★★★★

Ok...do you really love breakfast? Then, DAMNIT! You need to eat at Al's Breakfast. It's an experience you won't forget. A real mom'n pop kind of place, but good and fresh grub. You won't miss the action cause everything is right in front of you! It's not fancy, so don't dress up.

Pros: inexpensive, interesting people, creative menu

Cons: small, busy, limited hours

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simply awesome..one of the cities best!!!
I grew up in california...and Al's is like being home!
to all you breakfast junkies...Al's the Man!!

2
★★★★★

simply awesome..one of the cities best!!!
I grew up in california...and Al's is like being home!
to all you breakfast junkies...Al's the Man!!

Pros: great food

Cons: not enough time

Editorial from

What is the sound of one hand eating pancakes? At Al's Breakfast, the noble breakfast arts are practiced with the keen mind of a Zen master. People line up around the block if not to sit at the his feet, then at least to find a spot at his…

 

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