BEST COFFEE HOUSE - 2003
Coffee News Cafe
One of the great culinary plagues afflicting the Twin Cities is the bland, tasteless, mass-produced sandwiches that can be purchased at just about every coffee shop in town. Bully for the company that thought up this idea, but really, how hard is it to make a freakin' turkey sandwich? Are the baristas whose tip jars seem to become larger and more prominently displayed with each passing day incapable of wielding anything but an espresso machine? You won't find any date-stamped, plastic-wrapped ham-and-swiss sandwiches at the Coffee News Café. This five-year-old Macalester-Groveland gem serves up some of the best cheap grub in town. There's the sliced-turkey sandwich, smothered in avocado and topped with bacon and red onion. Or the chicken breast sandwich, piled high with roasted red peppers, goat cheese, and spinach. The garlic-crusted French fries are some of the best in town, and the breakfast fare (omelets, pancakes, French toast) is also first rate. That said, most of the Macalester students and profs who keep the place packed day and night are here for a simple cup of Joe. The beans are roasted on the premises, and there are three varieties of coffee each day. With free refills. And if caffeine isn't quite the jolt you're looking for, don't fear: The Coffee News Café also has a beer and wine license.