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Venerable Hole in the Wall — 7 Comments

  1. Loved this critique, Keith! Sadly I never heard of it years ago when I lived in Mpls!! Also, loved the “sound track”… great brass.

  2. Thanks Barb! No reason you would be aware of Al’s really unless you hung around the U back in the day. Now the hole-in-the-wall is getting much wider notice.

  3. The “building” housing Al’s Breakfast, and the brick structure to its south — the one that was a hardware store when the alley structure was erected in 1937 — are both now owned by Paul Dzubnar, CEO of the Green Mill Restaurants hereabouts. He has pledged many times over the years never to do anything that would disturb or threaten the existence of Al’s. He’s a loyal patron and a fan, as well as their landlord.

  4. Actually, Al’s “notoriety” extended beyond Dinkytown. I’ve been going there since I blew into town in ’77. I’ve taken my daughters there since before they can remember and they, I’m sure, will take their kids there, too, if this potential granddad knows anything.

    Kids get plastic dinosaurs as a garnish on their plate. I asked once if my 20 yr. old “kid” could have one. I got a dirty look. But when her plate arrived there was, if memory serves, a blue brontosaurus on it. We once asked nicely and they let her wear the James Beard award medal around her neck while she ate. While posing for a pic, she made like she was going to bite it to see if it was real. Another customer for life.

  5. Thanks RRLast, I didn’t know those toys were working dinosaurs. Guess we haven’t been there when kids occupied some of the 14 stools. The story with the James Beard medal is priceless. How old was your daughter then?

  6. I promised Al yrs ago that I was never going to be one of those old guys that came in to relive their Uni days on Saturdays. Somewhere in the pile I still have chit unused.

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