Serving Minnesota and Northern Iowa.

Finne's Cafe sells soup by the gallon

Heather Thorstensen

Date Modified: 12/01/2009 9:04 AM

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Finne's Cafe

Address: 30 3rd St. SW, Plainview, Minn.

Hours: Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, 6:30 a.m to 1 p.m. and Sunday 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday and Saturday night: 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Best seller: Breakfasts. Two eggs, hash browns, choice of meat and toast sells for $5.25.

Call them at: (507) 534-4400

PLAINVIEW, Minn. -- Tim Finne comes from the restaurant business.

He grew up working for his father, who co-owned a truck stop in Rochester and had a couple different restaurants. His brother, Wade, owns Finne's Family Restaurant in Dodge Center.

Tim owns Finne's Cafe in Plainview. He has been in his current location for four years, but he's had three restaurants in the town. His cafe is tucked just a block off of State Highway 247 as it cuts through the area.

The restaurant seats about 50 people. It has cozy, yellow walls and the tables are covered with black-and-white checkered tablecloths. Tim's girlfriend, Jennifer, handled the decorating.

"She's a big help here," he said.

Tim describes his place as having a friendly atmosphere. He estimates 85 percent of his business is local. He knows most of the time what his regular customers will order because they always stick with their favorites.

He does a lot of the cooking, making meals from scratch with his own recipes. He's also incorporated menu ideas he picked up from working at different restaurants over the years.

Breakfast options include omelets, griddle foods, skillet meals and biscuits and gravy. The sausage gravy is very popular, Tim said. He likes the haystack skillet, a biscuit stacked with hash browns, meat, eggs and sausage gravy for $5.95. The garden skillet is loaded with hash browns with onions, mushrooms, tomatoes and green pepper, topped with eggs and cheese. It's served with toast or an English muffin.

He said his hot beef sandwich is the best around. It's a Wednesday lunch special for $6.95. Regular lunch options include soups -- which can be ordered in a bread bowl -- six burgers, four salads and 11 sandwiches.

The Ashley sandwich is named after Tim's daughter: An English muffin with eggs, cheese, bacon, sausage and ham. Or the Rachel, an egg sandwich named after Jennifer's sister.

Kids have their own selections to choose from, including macaroni and cheese.

Dinner, served Friday and Saturday evenings, offers fish, steak, chicken, shrimp and ribs. Prices range from $8.25 for two chicken pieces to $15.95 for any combination on the menu.

Finne's is taking holiday orders for soup, pies, and rolls: Dinner rolls, caramel rolls or cinnamon rolls. Tim said it's a option to help customers during the busy season.

"During the holidays, they don't have to do all the cooking themselves," he said.

Any time of year, people can buy soup by the gallon or half gallon, rolls by the dozen or any meal to go. That full gallon of soup is a good, easy meal for families, Tim said. The chicken wild rice is a customer favorite.

The cafe can make just about any kind of pie, Tim said, including sour cream raisin, Dutch apple and pecan. They also have a special Tollhouse pie.

"It's like eating a cookie," Tim said.

Tim likes his work because of the people he gets to interact with everyday. That, and hearing people like his food.

--Heather Thorstensen

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