1821 Riverside Ave, Minneapolis, MN | Directions 5545444.969676 -93.246177
Neighborhoods: Cedar-Riverside, University
A little dissapointing – Me and my friend found this place online, we were attracted to the fact that it was open late. But when we got there the service was lame and the coffee was o.k. but cold. At least it was only 3 dollars. It seemed liked the place locals go to, doesn't really welcome newcomers. It could stand to be remodeled. Also, due to it's late hours, homeless people tend to come hang out.
Best coffee ever! – I love the sludge at the bottom of my cup: great, dark roast french press coffee. If yer vegetarian or vegan, it's also the best options in the city. I love the Tempeh Reuben, and they have fresh soup specials daily. Of course the clientle is varied, everything from yuppies to crusty punks to immigrants, college students and the homeless of all ages, but over all friendly people and always a chess game waiting. It is busy as lunch, and the cooks can get grumpy, but one person makes ALL the food during their shift, so give them a break. I guess I'm empathetic cuz i work in the service industry my self, but hey they only make minimum wage plus tips, so tip em good cuz damn it's worth it. MY FAVORITE RESTAURANT IN THE WORLD! and i've been around, baby.
Out of place and out of time – It is quant little place that defintely needs to be tried. The place looks like it has not changed much since the 70's so expect to be transported in time. The food is good all organic and veggie. I felt comfortable at that place, my friend did not. I guess you have to be the easy going kind and not expect a jazzy place.
AUTHENTIC CAFE – This was the best place to stay up all night long drinking coffee, playing chess, and smoking Drum handrolled cigs. After leaving college, I moved to "hip" California but have NEVER, EVER found a place like the HardTimes again. You CANNOT create that type of place. It creates you. In fact, the only reason I bother going back to Minneapolis is to visit the U of M, Augsburg College, and the Hard Times. GOD, I MISS THAT PLACE....AND MY FRIENDS!!!!! QUE VIVA EL GORDIE, MAESTRO DEL ZEIT(ER)!
why are the cooks such jerks? – if you have a menu, and i order a dish off that menu, the least you culd do is not stomp around loudly complaining about how crappy that item is, and how much you hate to cook it, and then make it small and overcooked out of spite. dude. go to the collective meeting and get it taken off the menu. and then i'll go somewhere else to eat.
Best place in town... – Honestly, one of the main reasons I stay so long and keep coming back to Minneapolis. I've been coming here since it was the Urban Peasant and I was around when the collective took over the business back in November of '92. I've watched the menu grow in to an awesome selection of vegan/vegetarian food-just about everything you could want. I also love that Hard Times hasn't followed the rest of the restaurant world into serving a bunch of pre cooked frozen stuff that just gets heated up in a microwave. When you order hashbrowns the cook grates up the potatoes right then and cooks them on the grill. Yeah it takes a little longer, but who can argue with fresh food? I hope this place stays around forever. Thanks Hard Times for making Minneapolis a tolerable place to live. (Go early for quicker service- it gets packed at night.)
Late Night or Any Time! – Hard Times Cafe has got to be the best spot in town for vegan/vegetarian food and coffee! It's open 22 hours every day from 6am til 4am. They've got a huge menu, and everything is made fresh to order. No pre packaged anything. Try anything with their homemade house salsa (only a buck for a big side dish). Also, great organic, fair trade coffee made in a french press for a dollar even. The staff can be a bit gruff but they're really helpful, because they all own the place together! It's a collective restaurant so everybody who works there has an equal share in running the place. Hands down THE best in the Twin Cities!
Great, but not for the faint of heart – Hard Times Cafe is the sort of place that attracts three main types of people: those who are very cool and urban, those who aspire to being very cool and urban, and those who are poorly groomed. I've been in lots of cafes that attempt to maintain a hip, grungy sort of atmosphere, but Hard Times is to those places what Saint Sabrina's is to Hot Topic. As an added bonus, their coffee is great and their food is to die for (try the Helter Skelter; it will change your life). The later in the day you go, the more likely it is to be crowded, and the more likely it is that complete strangers will come up and talk to you. If that's your sort of thing, then you can't do better; if it's not, consider yourself warned; and if you're not sure, I'd reccommend giving it a shot.
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