Eating Week #4: Hell’s Kitchen
Given Mike’s long history with the restaurant (see here!), it’s not at all surprising that one of the places we wanted to review for the dining-out part of this blog was Hell’s Kitchen. It’s a fabulous restaurant, with wonderful food and incredible atmosphere, and if you’re in the Twin Cities area, you owe it to yourself to dive into Hell’s Kitchen. This time, Mike, Kira, Kira’s aunt and uncle, and Catherine and I went to brunch, and it was a very special outing. So, what happened on this trip?
I’ve been to Hell’s Kitchen quite a few times now, but this dining experience was special in quite a few ways:
First, it was a special brunch in celebration of Hell’s Kitchen’s 10th anniversary. The restaurant had picked a number of their best, signature, dishes and put them on special. Between the six of us, we tried all of them, and each one was deserving of the ‘signature’ label. At Mike’s suggestion we started off with the Lemon Ricotta Hotcakes, and the Bison Sausage Bread. I’d had the bread once before and it was every bit as good as the last time. The Lemon Ricotta Hotcakes were incredibly light and fluffy, with a perfect balance between the lemon and ricotta undertones. We almost ate all of it before I remembered to pull out my camera.
Mike had the Corned Beef, which was a bit chunkier than I usually expect from Corned Beef, but looked and smelled very tasty.
Kira and her aunt had a portabello mushroom dish with hollandaise sauce. I’m not a big fan of mushroom, but they both pronounced it incredible.
Kira’s uncle went for the Heuvos Rancheros. This is one of the best brunch dishes out there – everyone should try it!
I’ve had it before, and was tempted myself, but went for the Shrimp & Crab Cakes, which comes with Hollandaise and Red Pepper Puree sauces. Very, very tasty. I do a nice Salmon Cake, but I’m going to have to work on it to get it anywhere close to these cakes! Catherine also had them, and was equally impressed.
To round out the meal, I had a Bloody Mary, after seeing Mike’s arrive. Very spicy, but a great accompaniment to the main meal.
Second, Mitch and Cynthia (Hell’s Kitchen’s owners) stopped by our table and presented Mike with a birthday surprise. They presented him with a birthday candle that sent flames shooting into the air, started twirling around, and played a tune. Then, it wouldn’t shut off until the wires were cut, making for a lot of laughs as everyone tried to make it stop.
Third, Mike had been declared the “Customer of the Decade”, based on his incredible cooking feats last year, as detailed on his Mike/Mitch Project blog. They presented him with a number of gifts and there was a lot of animated and funny conversation.
While I can’t guarantee that everyone’s visit will be as exciting as our last trip to Hell’s Kitchen, I can guarantee that you’ll get a wonderful meal, served by a great waitstaff, in a restaurant with loads of atmosphere. It’s clear that Mitch and Cynthia love cooking and making diners happy; it’s clearly evident in every aspect of the restaurant.