A red brick exterior, spacious sidewalk patio, and delectable café menu highlight the charming European appeal of Rue Lafayette, whose beginnings were documented on a recent episode of Renovation Realities on HGTV. Early-morning strollers, comptrollers, and world-weary street mimes can start their morning of artfully aimless ambling with Rue Lafayette's sweet, flaky croissants imported from France. The chocolate croissant ($2.25) matches particularly well with large cups of the café's drip coffee ($2.25) or frothy cappuccino ($3.55). Lunchers, meanwhile, can feast on the quiche ($6.99) and mix it together in their digestive centrifuge with the sinfully tasty croissant bread pudding ($5.99). Since Rue Lafayette's dishes rotate with the stately dance of the seasons, each polite café employee will cheerfully lay out today's recommendations, tomorrow's libations, and yesterday's neutron radiation gyrations. The café's mad scientists have also combined breakfast and lunch into an unholy (yet delicious) monstrosity known as brunch, which gets unleashed from its chains every Saturday and Sunday.
Amber and JoyLynn, founders of The Joy of Cake Bakers, both grew up with a love for baking and a belief that dessert and happiness go hand-in-hand. They work with their clients so that they can customize each cake to match their personalities and ruling planets before toting their visually appealing confections for delivery.
At Black Bear Bakery, every batch of Lickhalter sourdough-rye bread, sweet pastries, and crunchy granola is made with the care of a shop owner. That’s because each staff member serves as a partial owner of the communal shop. This makes each staff member feel a personal responsibility for creating a shop they’d like their family to come to, encouraging them to use eco-friendly processes and locally sourced, organic ingredients. Along with whole-grain recipes filled with specialty ingredients such as kalamata olives and rosemary, bakers use century-old recipes passed down from the owners of Lickhalter Bakery. These recipes create hearty sourdough-rye loaves sprinkled with caraway seeds or twisted together with pumpernickel dough.
While breads are their specialty, bakers fill their ovens with more than just bread loaves. They craft handmade, boiled bagels that come sans holes, as well as cookies, baked granola, pizza crusts, and a variety of buns. On the weekends, they welcome the community for a vegetarian and vegan brunch, which features staples such as pancakes, quiche, potatoes, and bread pudding made from their loaves. These dishes can be washed down with pours of fair trade coffee, juice, tea, or pastry filling.
The Cup bakes more than a dozen cupcake flavors that revolve every week, making room for new flavor features and seasonal specials. The classic combination of chocolate buttercream and fluffy yellow cake inside the Gold Rush ($2.75) is always available for prospectors to purchase with their own newly sifted nuggets. Patrons alight on lime-green stools as they break through the latticework of a streusel-encrusted sugar glaze to access the Cuppa Coffee Cake ($2.95). The Grasshopper ($2.75) was a recently featured confection, with an Andes mint spelunking into vanilla-mint buttercream. The Pumpkin Harvest ($2.75) treat will induce jack-o'-lantern grins September–December. A selection of The Cup’s from-scratch buttercream is also available in gluten-free incarnations.
The product of an artistically inclined married couple with a passion for all-natural foods, SweetArt boasts a menu of organic and homemade cookies, cupcakes, cakes, sandwiches, and wraps, with an all-vegetarian lunch menu that features a bounty of vegan options. Co-founder Cbabi's colorful paintings cover the neighborhood bakeshop and art studio's sun-kissed, bright walls, making it a lovely locale to bust out your idea journal over a vegan Sweet burger ($7.25) paired with a spicy cup of flad ($3.95), Sweet Art's house-made, vegan, three-bean chili loaded with chunky sweet potatoes. The grilled Klemm ($5.95) is served stuffed with cheese, fresh broccoli, and roasted garlic, while the vegan Botanical ($6.85) swaddles baked tofu, black sesame seeds, cilantro, spicy peanut sauce, and veggies.
Today's deal lets STLers in on the city's biggest secret to be revealed since the time it was determined that the Budweiser brewery gnomes did not fly back to their home planet but had merely gone extinct. For $15, you'll get $35 worth of award-winning Italian cuisine and decadent desserts at La Dolce Via, a family-owned café in Forest Park Southeast.Follow @Groupon_Says on Twitter.