Best dishes countdown # 12: Pancakes at Nighthawks

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Syrup is almost superfluous.

Floppy, dense, fragrant, more cake than air — there's really no arguing about what constitutes a perfect pancake. "Plain old buttermilk" cakes at Nighthawks are anything but plain. 

For those with a wandering eye, variety awaits. Like a blank canvas anticipating color, these pancakes can take on virtually anything and work.

We're crazy about the bacon-kimchee-scallion, but more standard things like blueberry-lemon are prototypical beauties, too. Go Caribbean with lime-coconut-pineapple, or Southwestern with chorizo-cheddar-corn. 

Or go around the pancake world in a day and order them all. A short stack is only six bucks, meaning the entire eight-flavor gamut will cost less than $50.

We can think of more ridiculous and less delicious ways to spend $50.

Nighthawks 

3753 Nicollet Ave. S., Minneapolis 

612-248-8111

nighthawksmpls.com

100: Caramel Bacon Puffcorn at Red Cow 

99: Pappadams from the Curry Diva

98: The Kingfield at Five Watt

97: Raspberry Cream Scone at Sun Street Breads

96: Bacon and Bourbon from 6Smith

95: Biscuits and Gravy at Ward 6

94: Burgers from Peppers and Fries

93: The Everything Bagel from Rise Bagel Co.

92: Bent River Camembert from Alemar Cheese

91: Two large pizzas and a pitcher of beer, Original Red's Savoy

90: Boiled Peanut Hummus at 4 Bells

89: Chaksuka from Shish

88: Fried Green Tomato BLT from Butcher and the Boar

87: Charcuterie Board at Surly Beer Hall & Restaurant

86: Quiche from Le Town Talk

85: Aloo Tama from the Himalayan

84: Caramelized Cauliflower at Libertine

83: Banh Mi Joy Dog at Prairie Dogs

82: Salmon Poke at District Fresh Kitchen & Bar

81: Savory Waffle at Birchwood Cafe

80: Kofta from Mim's

79: Medianoche at La Ceiba

78: Spicy Golden Tofu from Peninsula

77: Chicken Fantastic from Safari

76: Ramen at Zen Box

75: Puttanesca at Foreign Legion

74: Salted caramel hazelnut tart at Eastside

73: Pastas at Monello

72: Housemade sausages at Ox Cart Ale House

71: Indeed's Rum King

70: Pernil from Tinto Cocina + Cantina

69: Beef tartare at the Commodore

68: Dry rub chicken at Breaking Bread

67: The footlong burrito at El Taco Riendo

66: Eggs Benedict at Grand Cafe

65: Vanilla buttercream donut from Bogart's

64: Chicken and waffles at Bradstreet Craftshouse

63: Umeboshi sour at Tattersall Distilling

62: Lobster deviled eggs at Lela

61: Surly Darkness (2015)

60: Yellowtail with passion fruit from Il Foro 

59: Matzo ball soup from Nighthawks

58: Baby potatoes from Birdie

57: The Reuben at Tilia

56: Cocktail Flight at Tongue in Cheek 

55: Classic burger from Burger Burger

54: Chicken pot pie at the Draft Horse 

53: Sambusas at Afro Deli 

52: Duck Fat Brunch Potatoes at Meritage 

51: Pulled bulgogi jackfruit from LolaRosa's

50: Classic truffle from Legacy Chocolates

49: Simple breakfast at the Kenwood 

48: Panzanella salad from Burch

47: Thai drunken fish at Chino Latino 

46: Gyoza from Ramen Kazama 

45: Lemon Meringue Pie at Revival 

44. Sandwiches at the Bachelor Farmer Cafe

43: Teasers at Tongue in Cheek 

42: Green chile cheese fries at Halftime Rec

41: Brussels sprouts at Hola Arepa

40: Snapper ceviche at 4 Bells

39: Chocolate chip cookie from Black Walnut Bakery 

38: Cheese curds from Lone Grazer Creamery 

37: Thumbs Cookies

36: Poutine at the Rabbit Hole 

35: Pizza at Big River Pizza

34: Braised Short Ribs at Parella 

33: Limoncello mussels at Italian Eatery

32: Pizza rolls at Red Wagon Pizza

31: Fried chicken at Dixie's on Grand

30: Pho at Ngon Bistro

29: Duck meatloaf sliders at Spoon and Stable

28: Chilled blue mussels at Heyday

27: Swedish meatballs at Upton 43

26: Scallop crudo at Scena 

25: Pelmeni at Russian Tea House 

24: Yakisoba dog at Kyatchi 

23: Beef tibs at Shega Foods 

22: Curried goat at Smalley's BBQ 

21: Chicken dumplings at Rainbow Chinese

20: BBQ at Q Fanatic 

19: Bespoke cocktails at The Alchemist 

18: Crab toast at Burch 

17: Lamb tartare at St. Genevieve

16: Sandwiches at Lowry Hill Meat 

15: Spaghetti Nero and clams at Il Foro

14: Meat pie at Heirloom

13: Red wine poached eggs at Spoon & Stable 


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