December 14, 2004
When my mom was alive, this was one of favorite meeting spots for lunch. We would both get the French Onion Soup and a fresh baguette and fool ourselves that we were eating our lunch somewhere on the Seine. It's that authentic and that good. I doubt you can find a better bowl of French Onion Soup outside of France.
So when I stayed at the Sofitel on this trip, I had to share the Chez Collette experience with my kids. We made it downstairs for breakfast. We ordered a big basket of fresh French pastries. The basket came with wonderful flakey croissants and fruit-filled danishes. They were just like I remembered them. The kids got a sausage-and-egg breakfast and I got a hot bowl of hot oatmeal with fruit.
The service was great, friendly, and very attentive. Chez Collette looks like a bistro in Paris. It's not overdone or corny. It looks and feels like the real thing.
It's hard to get a good croissant in America. Most of them are too hard or too doughy. These are flaky and wonderful.
I am sorry we missed having lunch here on this trip. My mouth was watering for that gooey French Onion Soup or a plate of steak and fries.
The one drawback is that it is so authentic, it even has Paris prices. The bill for three of us for a modest breakfast was $48. Even for a meal this good, the prices seemed a little more like Paris than Bloomington, Minnesota.
Even with the Paris prices, this is one hotel restaurant you should not pass up. If you find yourself in Minneapolis and want a real French bistro meal, you should head to the Sofitel. It's authentic and will not disappoint. I have a lot of fond memories here and hope to make new ones in the future. It's a favorite and a meal worth seeking out when you’re in the Twin Cities.
From journal Bundle Up! We're hitting Minneapolis in November