When people walk into Little Euro or Old European Breakfast House for the first time, most of them couldn’t tell you what ebelskivers are. Unlike buttermilk pancakes, croissants, and other imported specialties, they haven’t become a common part of American breakfasts. But once diners sample the ball-shaped pancakes—served with toppings such as blackberry-brandy syrup or stuffed with sausage and havarti cheese—they most likely add them to their breakfast lexicons.
Beyond their deliciousness, ebelskivers are significant to the restaurants’ staff for another reason. Tami and Dave Sevier own both Little Euro and Old European Breakfast House’s Spokane location. When Tami’s grandmother, Marie Mekkelsen, was 18 years old in 1906, she moved away from her poor family in Denmark to join her brother in America. Before leaving her homeland, Marie’s mother made one last dish for her—her favorite Danish ebelskivers. Marie carried the memory of these unique pastries with her, passing it down through the family. To this day, the chefs use the same recipe Tami’s great-grandmother used in Denmark, crafting them from scratch alongside crepes, belgian waffles, and hungarian goulash with red potatoes. To heighten the authenticity, they squeeze their orange juice in-house rather than buying it from the store.
Lunchtime diners also have their pick of sandwiches and housemade soups. Little Euro also has an espresso drive-thru for drivers to grab an on-the-go pick-me-up before sitting through a business meeting or Wagner’s entire Ring Cycle.