The baristas at Bean Brokers Cappuccino Bar brew a vast selection of fine coffees and teas and serve them alongside baked goods and cafe fare. Diners kick off feeding frenzies with verdant nibbles of a small salad followed by a to-go sandwich, perfect for mobile noshing or carpool-lane food fights. A 16-ounce coffee awakens mouths and minds, and a 16-ounce cup of tea adds a dash of balmy zen to harried schedules. Alternatively, customers can scoop up punch cards and trade them in for trios of 16-ounce lattes and scrumptious muffins. Bean Brokers accepts orders via text to ensure that feasts are ready and covered in savoury emoticons upon arrival.
A 2010 winner of the Calgary Choice awards for Best in Children’s Retail, Coffee & S’cream invites parents and kids alike to mingle and unwind in a shop that’s equal parts coffeehouse and playland. In the latter, colourful paintings of puzzle pieces dance across murals on the walls, echoing the soft mats that fit together to cover the floor, as pint-sized patrons slither down slides, pilot toy cars, and instill a working communist utopia within 30 seconds of playing. Meanwhile, adults sip smoothies or lattes from the coffee shop, whose menu of sandwiches, soups, and 27 flavours of ice cream keeps visitors of all ages sated.
Caffe Crema is a family-friendly coffeehouse serving up a steaming menu of specialty drinks concocted with locally roasted, direct-trade beans from Fratello Coffee Roasters, as well as light gourmet fare (food items not available with today's deal). Recharge your internal battery with a cup of French-pressed coffee or an espresso brewed with the Slayer, a specialty retro-styled espresso machine not found in many other Canadian locales. The expansive, relaxed lounge area is stocked with plump leather seating and a healthy bookcase, fostering an atmosphere conducive to quiet time with a laptop or a casual chat with friends. Caffe Crema's aromatic halls are also the site of monthly music events showcasing local talent scouted out by the café's own music coordinator.
Second Cup Coffee brews and serves tea and 26 different types of fair-trade coffee hailing from Africa, Latin America, and Asia. The full-bodied el toucan ($1.75–$2.25), harvested from the slopes of a Panamanian volcano, soothes souls like a billionaire's pet parrot with a rich and nutty flavour. Others can indulge in specialty drinks, such as a butter-pecan latte ($2.75–$4.85) or the iced vanilla-bean quencher made with creamy, pure Madagascar vanilla ($1.85–$4.85). Second Cup Coffee also offers mouth bones some sweet and tasty action with cookies ($1.25–$2.85) and cheesecake ($4.49). Customers can bask in the pleasure of a warm cafe treat or can update their Angela Lansbury fan blogs in the comforts of the large outdoor patio equipped with free WiFi. Second Cup Coffee also carries Rainforest Alliance coffee.
Dover Pizza Steak House & Lounge populates three dine-in menus with a delectable selection of pizzas, salads, and Italian entrees. Begin by snapping taste buds out of their pizza trance with appetizers such as the dry ribs ($9.95), served traditionally or with a honey-garlic sauce, or the chicken wings ($9.95), with a choice from seven different dressings. Then, culinary artisans flatten dough and coat the newly formed crust with sauce, cheese, pepperoni, mushrooms, and green peppers before teleporting the circular comestibles into the oven ($13–$33.50). Bacon-and-pineapple-topped pies roll out of the kitchen ($14.25–$29). Like a baseball field made of tasty meat, the full dinner menu includes a sizable mound of goodness and offers several plates, including the veal parmigiana ($15.95) and the beef tenderloin stir-fry ($15.95). Opt to relax in Dover's lounge, sipping house wines and domestic draft beers while sampling from the lounge menu, which features a swath of bar snacks and the full pizza menu. In the lounge, patrons watch sports on HDTVs, work out thumbs on video-game machines or belt out tunes during karaoke every second Friday of the month.
Tilted Grill whirls taste buds thanks to a dizzying array of international street fare, complemented by reimagined comfort fare, aged Alberta steaks, and specialty vodka and tequila. The menu assembles an all-star team of dishes handpicked by the Queen's special forces culinary unit, unearthing delicacies such as Southern Thailand's tiger-shrimp cake swaddling muscular prawns in aromatic shallots, ginger, kaffir-lime leaves, and lemongrass beside a reflecting pool of sweet curry sauce ($16). Marinated for two days in 18 herbs and spices, the peking crackling chicken flash-fries succulent fowl ($24), and the grilled-cheese fondue reimagines a comfort classic as it layers three cheeses, sliced pears, and cranberry compote ($13). Steaks cut from aged AAA Alberta beef come straddled by seasonal veggies and choice of signature comfort-fare side, such as apple coleslaw or a mashed-potato teddy bear ($27+ for an 8 oz. tenderloin). Outside, the 2,000-square-foot patio and its two fireplaces invite lively conversation about investing in exotic goats while swigging a Grasshopper wheat ale ($7.50/pt.) off the extensive drink menu.