Put your stretchy pants on and embrace hygge at this new St. Paul café

Put on your stretchy pants and stay awhile.

This story is part of GoMN's 2017-18 Winter Guide.

We recently just learned what hygge means, and we already love to hate it/hate to love it.

If you're not familiar, hygge (hue-guh) is a Danish term that, in essence, describes that feeling you get when you stay inside and get cozy as heck – think warm, fuzzy blankets, comfy clothing, candles, and a few close friends sipping hot toddies by the fireplace.

We've previously made the case against hygge, because there are too many fun winter opportunities for Minnesotans to spend the entire season indoors. 


– How to winterize your life, for less.

But a new café in St. Paul is inviting Minnesotans to embrace the concept, and maybe its the daylight savings hangover talking, but we must admit it sounds quite tempting.

Take off your coat and stay awhile

Hygga Lowertown is a mom and pop coffee shop and eatery owned by husband and wife team Chad and Rebecca Northup. 

According to the website, Chad has over 20 years of experience in the food industry, and Rebecca is a coffee aficionado. They opened the café earlier this fall in the former Bedlam Theatre.

Chad's Danish family members introduced him to the meaning of hygge a couple years ago, and he immediately knew he wanted to bring it to Lowertown.

How the concept translates to the restaurant: comfy ambiance, warm service, and a community of conviviality.

"We want to hug the hearts of our patrons," the website says.

The Pioneer Press recently visited Hygga Lowertown and called the space "stylish yet cozy" with plenty of lounging areas for patrons to kick back and stay awhile.

Hygge on the menu

In the spirit of hygge, the crew at Hygga Lowertown is roasting their own coffee and baking their own bread and pastries.

The restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and has a full bar to warm you up from the inside.

But you won't find a menu on the website, because it's ever-changing, based on locally sourced ingredients. 

The website says people can expect "hearty" breakfasts, "rustic goodies with gooey pastries" and "artisan sandwiches and soup for lunch," while the evening menu will include appetizers "that tastefully complement your craft cocktail or glass of wine." 

The kitchen team is happy to make many dishes vegan and/or gluten-free, the site says.

Hygga Lowertown (213 E. Fourth St., Suite 100, St. Paul) is open Mon-Sat from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sundays. Find more info on the website.

This story is part of GoMN's 2017-18 Winter Guide.

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