Based on the clarity of concept, the fittingly homey aesthetic, and the fact that nearly every seat in the dining room and on the sidewalk patio was filled on our visits, the Copper Hen is one of the more impressive outfits born of the now-ubiquitous local restaurant Kickstarter campaign. Helmed by the husband and wife team of Chris and Danielle Bjorling, the French country cafe leans heavily on its bakery foundation, with nearly every dish on the menu containing something that Danielle has reared from butter, flour, and water. Bjorling’s style dispenses with fussy decoration in favor of a focus on simple flavors and natural ingredients, especially in her cupcakes, which we found to be a mixed bunch. Though they appeared to be the popular order among other patrons, the bakery items that made the most lasting impression on us were the cinnamon rolls -- almost like a sweet, glazed dinner roll rather than a hunk of bread, covered in that excellent cream cheese frosting -- and the tender buttermilk scone, served with velvety, bright homemade lemon curd. For now, Copper Hen comes across as sure-footed in the bakery case, but remains a little wobbly when it comes to their cafe component.They may need to reconcile their counter service setup with their customers’ need for tableside attention, but the Copper Hen feels substantial and they certainly have the bakery base to back it up. PHOTOS BY E. KATIE HOLM
Check out our review of the Copper Hen on Eat Street...
The Copper Hen
2515 Nicollet Ave., Minneapolis