Party of One Entry #1 - The Lynhall

“My alone feels so good, I'll only have you if you're sweeter than my solitude.”

Warsan Shire

To kick off my new series about dining alone, I decided to visit The Lynhall in Uptown Minneapolis. I’ve been here a few times and each time is more pleasant than the last. With an atmosphere second-to-none and food that’ll knock your socks off, it was the perfect spot to get things done on a Sunday morning.

Unfamiliar with Anne Spaeth and The Lynhall? I'll let them break it down:

"The Lynhall is a market-inspired restaurant, event space, kitchen studio, and incubator kitchen. As a collective of culinary-driven individuals, we teach classes, bake goods, cook rotisserie meats, make thoughtful cocktails and coffee, and always have something new and nourishing to share. Stop by to learn, shop, meet friends or make new ones, get a bite, and be inspired. Grab a seat at the table."

It was around 9:15 am on Sunday and I was struggling to figure out where to go to A) get some stuff done and B) drink awesome coffee and eat food while doing it. I was set on going to World Street Kitchen to eat, I wasn’t sure what their coffee was like but I’d risk it for their biscuits. From there, I’d go over to Spyhouse or Five Watt and continue writing this while getting some other things done at the same time.

Then, as I was driving down Lake Street it hit me - “I’ll just go to the dang Lynhall!”. Total “Eureka!” moment but on a fairly lesser scale. So I turned on Bryant, got onto Lyndale, and pulled into the parking lot. Just my luck - a parking spot in a weird, yet doable, section of the parking lot. I accelerated as appropriately as possible and threw my car in park.

As I walked in, I wasn’t sure it was open. “Stupid, Andy,” I thought. “I should have checked the hours!” As soon as I thought this, I saw a sharply dressed man in a porkpie hat and scarf sitting at one of the booths inside. “He surely doesn’t work there,” I thought to myself. As soon as I thought that I noticed a worker wipe off a table right next to him, assuring me I was home free.

The place was weirdly empty, it being sort of early on a Sunday. I wasn’t upset, though, I had my pick of where I wanted to sit. I jumped in line quick and grabbed a menu. I thought I knew someone who was standing in line ahead of me. I secretly dreaded knowing this person. Not because I don’t like people, but I was on a mission. To get a bunch of stuff done, eat good food, and drink good coffee. I didn’t have time for conversation! Luckily, I didn’t know this person so I turned my attention to the menu.

After hemming and hawing over the brunch cocktails, and peeling my face off of the glass protecting the baked goods, I decided on the Short Rib Hash and Honey Yogurt & Cashew granola. I ordered - I think it came to around $32 with tip (Worth it!) - got my bottomless cup of coffee and raced to a table. Some dope took the table I was eyeing but they had a party of two, I of one, so it made more sense logistically. Found a spot next to an older couple who I think were on a date (?) and settled in.

I couldn’t help but overhear their conversation, which was drastically one sided. What I gathered was that she was maybe recently divorced and spent much of her youth on the east coast, and he was a strong/silent type. At one point she noticed some people she knew and said something along the lines of, “I see my friends everywhere I go,” to which he didn’t respond with much, and I sort of scratched my head.

Was that a humblebrag? Does she just happen to see her friends while she is out and about? In fact, one of her friends - or her friends kids - came over and they exchanged pleasantries. She hesitated and introduced the man she was with as her friend, and then spoke for him a couple of times. I couldn’t take the awkwardness anymore, and part of me felt bad for eves-dropping, so I threw in my headphones and got to work.

Not long after I started working, my food showed up. Obviously my attention was sharply diverted.

I dove straight into the yogurt for some reason and, man, it was incredibly. Very creamy and had a deep, nutty taste to it that ended sweet. I’m not sure what kind of yogurt it was - I thought it was maybe cashew yogurt but 1) how would that work and 2) I was confused because it was cashew granola. At any rate, I switched off between the yogurt and the hash to counteract the sweetness and saltiness of both dishes. The yogurt wasn’t too filling, though I would have liked more fruit. Alas, the yogurt was incredible and I will be ordering that every time I go to The Lynhall.

Having gorged myself on yogurt, granola, honey, and fruit, I dedicated what was left of my attention and appetite to the Short Rib Hash. As you can see in the photo above, The Lynhall doesn’t skimp on high quality ingredients. The pieces of meat were the size of a toddlers fist, and the potatoes and sweet potatoes were all tender and paired nicely with the tender chunks of beef. Both eggs were well made and would be any “yolk porn” follower’s dream. Other nice additions to the dish were mushrooms and an almond romesco sauce that added great color and a sweet flavor to an already delicious dish.

Once I was finished with an incredible brunch, I focused my attention to my work -- and my coffee. Yet another great thing about The Lynhall is the bottomless coffee. I swear I had around 5 or 6 cups of coffee on my way to the most productive afternoon I think I’ve ever had. Were it not for The Lynhall filling up my belly and motivation levels this past Sunday, I wouldn’t be inspired to write this series of blog posts.

After a good 3+ hours, 6 cups of coffee, and countless new artists discovered on Spotify, I decided to pack up my laptop as it comfortable sat at 11%. I couldn’t help but be incredibly inspired and happy after leaving The Lynhall, already looking forward to my next Sunday crush - food and work - session.

the-lynhall-minneapolis

I dove straight into the yogurt for some reason and, man, it was incredibly. Very creamy and had a deep, nutty taste to it that ended sweet. I’m not sure what kind of yogurt it was - I thought it was maybe cashew yogurt but 1) how would that work and 2) I was confused because it was cashew granola. At any rate, I switched off between the yogurt and the hash to counteract the sweetness and saltiness of both dishes. The yogurt wasn’t too filling, though I would have liked more fruit. Alas, the yogurt was incredible and I will be ordering that every time I go to The Lynhall.

Having gorged myself on yogurt, granola, honey, and fruit, I dedicated what was left of my attention and appetite to the Short Rib Hash. As you can see in the photo above, The Lynhall doesn’t skimp on high quality ingredients. The pieces of meat were the size of a toddlers fist, and the potatoes and sweet potatoes were all tender and paired nicely with the tender chunks of beef. Both eggs were well made and would be any “yolk porn” follower’s dream. Other nice additions to the dish were mushrooms and an almond romesco sauce that added great color and a sweet flavor to an already delicious dish.

Once I was finished with an incredible brunch, I focused my attention to my work -- and my coffee. Yet another great thing about The Lynhall is the bottomless coffee. I swear I had around 5 or 6 cups of coffee on my way to the most productive afternoon I think I’ve ever had. Were it not for The Lynhall filling up my belly and motivation levels this past Sunday, I wouldn’t be inspired to write this series of blog posts.

After a good 3+ hours, 6 cups of coffee, and countless new artists discovered on Spotify, I decided to pack up my laptop as it comfortable sat at 11%. I couldn’t help but be incredibly inspired and happy after leaving The Lynhall, already looking forward to my next Sunday crush - food and work - session.