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Lange’s Café

110 8th Ave. SE, Pipestone, MN - (507) 825-4488
Posted By Michael Stern on July 8, 2002 3:01 AM
Sometimes desperation is a better guide than Roadfood radar. We pride ourselves on being able to zero in on a great eatery based on its looks and a certain je ne sais quoi; and the truth is that if we hadn’t been hugely hungry, we would have driven right past Lange’s Café. It looks like a million other places we’ve driven past; nothing about it set our radar beeping. But we were desperate, and had no tips to follow in the area, so we walked in. There, just inside the door, was the pie and pastry case. Bingo!

We knew by the look of the caramel rolls and the crust on the pies that this was paydirt. And sure enough, as we ate our way through as much of the menu as possible, we swooned with pleasure over and over again.

Beef is the entrée not to miss. Listed as roast beef if it comes on a plate with mashed potatoes, green beans, and gravy, and as hot beef if it is served in a sandwich with mashed potatoes on top and gravy all over, it is pot-roast-tender and deep-flavored. Mashed potatoes are the real thing; dinner rolls that come alongside are freshly baked.

The caramel rolls that so many people eat for breakfast must be sampled any time they are available. They are immense blocks of sweet, yeasty dough – about 3x3x3-inches; and they are bathed in buttery warm caramel syrup that has a burnt smack to its sweetness.

Now, we have saved the best for last: sour cream raisin pie. It’s a specialty of bakers in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa; and over the years we have made it our business to sample every SCR pie we come across. Lange’s is built upon a custard that is dense, packed with raisins, creamy and sweet with the sour-cream edge that makes its sweetness all the more potent. Its meringue is airlight; the crust flakes when poked by a fork. It was our supremely lucky day, for we walked into Lange’s about 10am and the SCR pie was out of the oven only a short while. Our pieces were faintly warm, like baby food, and as we ate, we declared this the best sour cream raisin pie ever made … 10 on a 1-10 scale … the crème de la cream … the Mother Lode.
5 star rating
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Posted By dana mcdill on May 24, 2012 10:58 AM
So good. We sometimes drive out from Minneapolis just to eat at Lange's. it is all good, the beef, the pies the local passing scene. 5 stars.
4 star rating
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sour cream raisin pie
hot beef
caramel roll
surf & turf

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Posted By gerry binversie on May 29, 2011 1:04 AM
My wife and I travel everywhere on our Harley. On this trip we stumbled upon this restaurant. I found a Roadfood brochure on the table. I knew we'd found a jewel. We ordered the surf and turf, steak and shrimp, baked potato and salad. Service was great and so was the food. I took sour cream raisin pie to go, also excellent, as were the prices.
5 star rating
Overall Rating
surf & turf
sour cream raisin pie

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Posted By Beverly Knaak on February 10, 2004 3:32 PM
My family and I heard about this cafe from a friend who said the rolls are to die for. We were there over the lunch hour and must say that the service was the best we have ever recieved. The owner even came and filled our coffee for us. That is a nice surprise compared to all these fast food places and franchises. We had the special for the day the meatloaf dinner and it was wonderful, full of flavor, just like homemade. I must say also that I read the other ladies write up we had none of that when we were there, we would go there again and again for the best food in Minnesota! They had wonderful food and the best service around! We highly recomend it!
5 star rating
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Posted By Bev DeLage on June 8, 2003 9:16 AM
My husband & I made a special effort to go to Lange's Cafe for the pie after hearing about it on public radio. My husband's hot beef & his sour cream raisin pie were good. My bean soup was only fair & my apple pie was good. The problem wasn't the food, but the service. We live in a small town with all smoke free restaurants. At Lange's Cafe the waitresses are more interested in sitting at the counter smoking, than waiting on customers. We and two ladies at another table tried & tried to get the attention of no less than six waitresses to refill our coffee, ask if everything was alright, or ask if they could get us anything else. We could have just as well have been invisible. One waitress sat at the counter staring right past us out the window, another sat at the counter smoking, 3 or 4 were behind the counter wiping it off, putting dishes away, etc which could have waited until they took care of the customers. One waitress walked right by us & over to a couple that she obviously knew to chat. Apparently our waitress had gone on break without reassigning our table. However, the entire fault doesn't lie with her. The others could have covered for her if they hadn't been trying so hard to avoid us. These waitresses seemed to have the attitude of "that isn't my table, that isn't my responsibility." After at least 15 to 20 minutes or more, I finally went to a waitress sitting smoking at the counter & told her that there were two tables waiting for coffee and a chance to order dessert. Only then did we finally get a waitress to come back over to us. Management or ownership must condone this type of treatment of customers. They displayed the roadfood recommendation on their tables. Too bad they don't realize that it takes a lot more than good food to get and keep customers. I would never eat there again. If I should decide to try their pie once more, believe me I will buy a whole pie for take out.
1 star rating
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