Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Breakfast Lunch

Note: Don't try to go there. This restaurant is no more.

Cliquot Club Cafe
2929 East 25th Street

We ate breakfast at the Cliquot Club about a year ago. It's a coffee-shop/cafe, and after that first meal we decided that they weren't really ready to be reviewed. I think we may have even called them a "stove-less wonder," because we saw no evidence on the menu or on our breakfast plates that they had a stove top hidden somewhere behind their espresso machine. Given our traditional-breakfast loving crowd, we were rightly skeptical about a breakfast menu that doesn't include fried eggs or potatoes.

Well, it's time to admit that they exist, because since our first visit, the Cliquot Club has become one of my new favorite sandwich spots in Minneapolis. I had a Derby Dunker there two days ago and thoughts of the delicious tomato dipping-sauce have danced in my head ever since. It was garlicky and fresh and flavorful. The sandwiches you should order at the Cliquot Club are the grilled panini sandwiches, and they have about a dozen delicious sounding options, most of which I can't wait to sample. I'm pretty sure there's a sandwich press involved in their creation, because I saw one, and I still didn't see a stove-top even though I (not very subtly) stuck my head all the way around the counter to find it. However, now that I've tasted these sandwiches, I think of the lack-of-stove more as an obstacle the Cliquot Club has valiantly overcome than a ridiculous cooking oversight. The sandwich bread has just the right amount of crunch from the grilling process without being too tough to easily bite through. The cheese is perfectly melted, and the various toppings play well together.

It turns out Minneapolis residents didn't need me to tell them that the Cliquot Club sandwiches are brilliant, because the place gets crowded, which makes me glad, because even during that first substandard breakfast I loved the atmosphere of this small, unassuming place. The service is welcoming and warm without being obsequious, and the lighting and furniture and paint colors all add to the calm, clean, and up-to-date feel of the place. Of course, the "atmosphere" is best on days when you don't get hit by a truck while you're eating, but the Cliquot Club can't really be held responsible for the crazy shit that happened that one day.

I'm still not quite sure about a breakfast place with only baked egg options, but sometimes we get a late start here at Twin Cities Breakfast Club, and we are forced to meet for what we call breakfast-lunch club (or on rare, very late days: breakfast-dinner club). On such a day, the Cliquot Club would be a good choice for us, but be warned that if they have the Derby Dunker special going on again that day, I call dibs on ordering it.


Anonymous said...

I love the location and the look of this place, and I'm glad that it is better than my first impression. (if I wrote posts, this one would have been scathing)

- this is Rachael BTW, but blogger won't let me log in

Anonymous said...

I know that you just want to say "Dibs on the Derby Dunker".

Amadeus said...

Who wouldn't want to say "Dibs on the Derby Dunker"?

Alex said...

Nobody who'd ever tasted that sauce, let me tell you...mmm...garlic.

Anonymous said...

As of January 13th, Cliquot Club is closed.