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Al’s Breakfast is a Dinkytown institution. It has by far and away the best breakfast in the Twin Cities. When they open at 6AM there is a line outside every morning. Frequented by University of Minnesota students, staff, and locals alike, it is constantly busy.

It’s also tiny, a narrow hallway of a restaurant it has only a counter with 13 stools. When it is busy there will be 13 people sitting with 15 or so people crammed in behind them against the wall (only 2 feet behind the stools), waiting patiently, and not so patiently for their turn.

The service is brusque, but highly entertaining. They like to yell, orders, songs, at the customers, it doesn’t matter, but it tends to be loud. Receiving a cell phone call will get you accused of being a drug dealer.

My recommendation is the Spike; scrambled eggs with garlic, sautéed mushrooms and cheddar cheese are absolute bliss. Especially when served with the American style potatoes.

My memories of the University of Minnesota are not so happy, but my memories of Al’s are quite fond.