Remember that old joke about Minnesota having only two seasons—winter and road construction? Surely, there is brunch season as well, and, friends, it is upon us. Oversleep on a snowy Saturday? Go to brunch. Sick of cooking for the holidays? Go to brunch. Think of it as deer season—but you don’t have to shoot your food.
During brunch season, I recommend a special place where everything is, as the commercial goes, just right. Grand Café is a real neighborhood spot where frequent diners are friends, a cribbage board is stashed by the cash register, and that kid at the cozy bar? His mom is your waitress and they live three blocks away. Just as important, the coffee is good, the ancient enameled bread oven has frosted the windows and made the place all toasty, and chef Jon Radle cooks outstanding huevos rancheros ($12). The dish is made with succulent, locally raised pork that is spice-rubbed then slow-braised until it is soft as butter. Then add two eggs, homemade mole, and black beans, all atop a cheesy quesadilla. It all runs together making a magical mess better than the sum of its parts and allows you to forget that other season, leaving only road construction—and brunch. —Steven Brown
3804 Grand Ave. S., Mpls., 612-822-8260