2.7 / 9 votes

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New French fare, serving local and organics, full bar, serving food 8am-12:30pm every day.

Restaurant, Coffee/Tea/Juice, Bar

Barbette has received 'best of's from local press for its late night dining, desserts, wine list, and, of course, those French fries that accompany the steak frites. Chef Ty Hatfield uses local and organic ingredients as much as possible, presenting beautiful food in a casual, eclectic, bistro atmosphere. Says Star Tribune reviewer Rick Nelson: "I reveled in a meal that tasted far more expensive than the final tab suggested..." and," a restaurant that can be enjoyed by diners of all ages."

Barbette was founded in February of 2001. Formerly the site of Café Wyrd, an espresso bar, it was re-imagined to be a full-service neighborhood joint serving excellent food & wine. Lisa Carlson, who had worked at Laspinasse with Gray Kunz, and with Christian Duvalier, was the founding chef and quickly took a few prizes on the Minneapolis restaurant scene. In June of '04 Chef Ty Hatfield earned a 3 star review from the Star Tribune.

Barbette is named for the renowned aerialist Vander Clyde, who graduated from high school early so as to join the circus. Using the stage name 'Barbette', he became a world-famous performer, moving to France in the 1930's. He was a friend to Jean Cocteau and Man Ray, appearing in Cocteau's first film "LE SANG D'UN POÈTE" (The Blood of a Poet), 1930. Man Ray's photographs of Vander/'Barbette' appear beautifully reproduced in an out-of-print book along with Cocteau's essay about Barbette's performances. (If anyone finds our copy, please return it.) Vander Clyde later returned to the States and taught aerial work at Disney.

Added by Kim Bartmann on Feb 17 05 (last updated Nov 30 05)

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Most Recent Reviews

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rating star

I like the vibe at Barbette, and the urban-cool look and location of the joint. It's near a lake, it's in a relatively quiet area (except for the weekends) with lots of old homes and trees and just generally feels like a sidewalk cafe in some foreign country you're supposed to backpack through when you're in your 20s.

I came late on a Tuesday to try their french fries, as I'd heard good things about them. The fries ($5) were okay, but not great by any means; some were crisp and some were soft and limp/soggy. Don't they have any quality control on one of their most famous items?

The service was extremely friendly, smart and hip (I believe our server's name was "Ted"---thank you, Ted!).

Supposedly Barbette can also make rudimentary vegan dishes if you call in advance; otherwise, the menu is sadly animal product-heavy, which negates any faith I might have in the place having a creative chef.

Come to Barbette for the atmosphere and drinks, maybe. Probably not for the food.

rating star

I thought this place was going to wow me when I called ahead and asked if they could accommodate a party of 14 vegans. The chef made a special vegan menu for us and it was very nice. The manager was great, and friendly and accommodating - in word. But in reality, the served our party non-vegan soup and salads with cheese on them which had to be sent back. People started no trusting the food, I got really sick, and it was overall a disaster. Oh, and they must season the food with diamond dust because it costs a fortune.

I think the higher ups try, but the waitstaff just don't care.

The only reason to go are the pomme frites - which are amazing.

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Lake & Irving near Lake Calhoun


Accepts Reservations

Wheelchair Accessible


$$$ - expensive


  • American Express Diner's Club Discover MasterCard Visa


  • American
  • French
  • Eclectic (Fusion)


  • (Mostly) Organic
  • Brunch
  • Happy Hour
  • Kid-Friendly
  • Large Group-Friendly
  • Live Music
  • Outdoor Seating
  • Quiet
  • Romantic



8am - 1am
8am - 2am
8am - 1am

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