For those who mourn the passing of the iconic Peter’s Grill, it’s time to move on. Now open in that space is Hen House Eatery, and they’ve been very respectful.
Gone is the overwhelmingly minty décor theme, having been replaced with fresh orange, yellow, and spring green accents by the new owners. The tall wooden booths have stayed and one of the three loopy counters still exits. It works well to bring a modern freshness while still evoking the simple beauty of classic diners-past.
The most notable change would have to be the addition of a full bar in the center of the room, which of course begets breakfast cocktails, yeah? The Red Eye Rooster I had was outstanding and came with a veritable buffet of snacks. Beyond the usual mimosa or bellini you could also have a Cinnamon Toast Shot (Bailey’s with cinnamon and butterscotch schnapps) or sip on the Breakfast of Champions made with Crown Royal Maple, Jägermeister, bitters, OJ, and topped with bacon. Screw the three martini lunch, let’s start now . . . though happy hour does start at 2 p.m. and lasts until 7 p.m., for you early escapists.
The menu is big, and there are a lot of standard classics like French toast, eggs Bennedict, corn beef hash and the like. But there are some interesting things that pop out: tiramisu pancakes, Hen House poutine, Fat Hen omelet with quinoa, chilaquiles, a Buffalo chicken salad melt on the grilled cheese section, and a couple of alt-protein burger options (bison, salmon, turkey, veggie).
Jake and I had the turkey club and the bacon, egg, avocado breakfast sandwich, both featured very good multi-grain bread and super crispy bacon (a high score for us). The mac ‘n’ cheese was just plain standard and the grits weren’t right, but it was their first service, so I would hardly hold it against them. I’m rather excited to go back and try some of the waffles and egg dishes, because all-day breakfast downtown is something to root for.
Hours: M-F 6:30 a.m.-8 p.m., Sa-Su 7 a.m.-3 p.m.
114 South 8th St., Mpls., 612-345-4664, henhouseeatery.com