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DINING OUT Elba House

DINING OUT Elba House

Minnesota Highway 74

Elba

(507) 932-4578

Location, location, location -- the Elba House has all three. Nestled in a beautiful valley surrounded by wooded bluffs, the tiny hamlet of Elba is home to one of the area's oldest restaurants, the Elba House.

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"The original part of the building is from 1873," said owner/chef Dick Hildebrandt. If his name is familiar, it's because Hildebrandt was a chef at the Kahler Hotel for 17 years. He moved to the Twin Cities for a brief time before jumping at the chance to purchase the Elba House. "I grew up about two miles from here," he said. business p Minnesota Highway 74

Elba

(507) 932-4578

Location, location, location -- the Elba House has all three. Nestled in a beautiful valley surrounded by wooded bluffs, the tiny hamlet of Elba is home to one of the area's oldest restaurants, the Elba House.

"The original part of the building is from 1873," said owner/chef Dick Hildebrandt. If his name is familiar, it's because Hildebrandt was a chef at the Kahler Hotel for 17 years. He moved to the Twin Cities for a brief time before jumping at the chance to purchase the Elba House. "I grew up about two miles from here," he said.

On Friday nights you'll find folks lined up out the door waiting for the all-you-can eat fish fry/chicken dinner. The secret? "Good fish," said Hildebrandt. "Seafood is pretty much our biggest seller."

It draws crowds from near and far. "If you draw a circle from Rochester to Winona, that's where our customers come from," he said.

Hours

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Kitchen is open from 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Closed Mondays.

Value

That fish fry/chicken dinner is $7.95 with cole slaw, $8.95 with the salad bar. Burgers run from $3.75 to about $4.50, including fries. The Tower, a stacked-high hoagie sandwich, is $6.25.

Atmosphere

Rustic, frontier-like building in a scenic setting. Casual, family dining with different rooms from which to choose.

Specials

Daily lunch and dinner specials, including prime rib on Saturday night.

Worth noting

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Most dishes come in lunch and dinner sizes, with the lunch version available at any time.

Popular with Whitewater State Park visitors year-round.

--Tom Weber

Photo by Ken Klotzbach

Dining Out is a weekly look at a local restaurant. If you have comments or tips, call Lifestyle Editor Jan McFarland at 285-7624 or send e-mail to lifestyle@postbulletin.com.

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