The baristas at J. Arthur's Coffee strive to cultivate appreciation for artisanal coffee by focusing on unblended coffee with unique characteristics. The shop trades directly with farmers that use sustainable methods, developing relationships with individual coffee-bean producers who are dedicated to distributing high-quality beans that taste magical but don’t sprout into beanstalks. J. Arthur’s blends espresso drinks with whole and 1% milk from Autumnwood Farms, a local family-owned operation that only raises grass-fed cattle. As patrons sip lattes and scarf down house-made sandwiches, live musicians fill the air with soothing tunes.
The menu at Café Cravings, sister restaurant to Cravings Wine Bar & Grille, is in essence an encyclopedia of classic American cuisine. There are the sandwiches, which run the gamut from crisp BLTs and triple-decker clubs to the sizzling, strawberry-kissed Monte Cristo. There are the soups, which fill sourdough bread bowls, and the rotating selection of quiches. But most impressive has to be the breakfast. The 25-strong selection is served all day, ensuring that even those who wake up late or have their watch on backward get a bite of fluffy, ham-stuffed Denver omelets and apple-walnut pancakes topped with maple butter.
The eight-page dessert menu is no slouch either. Those who call ahead get their pick of whole cakes, tarts, cobblers, pies, cheesecakes, and other sugar-laden delicacies, which they can pick up inside or at the convenient drive-through window.
Today's Groupon is good bedaubed in butter, covered with cream cheese, or hung upon a maypole before the opening ceremony of a child's lacrosse tournament. You get 13 New York-style bagels and two 8-oz. tubs of cream cheese for $7 at St. Paul Bagelry in Roseville (a $14 value). The Roseville Review hailed St. Paul Bagelry's flavorful foodstuffs as the Best Lunch Under $10.
The chefs at Finnish Bistro channel Scandinavian culinary traditions to conjure a menu of European-tinged bistro fare. Breakfast is served all day to roust slumbering appetites and give late-rising roosters a false sense of accomplishment. Commence breakfasting with the Finnish Perinteiset breakfast, a platter piled high with smoked salmon lox, pickled herring, salami, and eggs mingled with cucumber, tomato, swiss cheese, and bread. A loaded baked-potato pizza remixes a comfort classic with fresh onions, cheddar cheese, and applewood-smoked bacon resting on a foundation of buttery garlic-mashed-potato set deep into an earthen crust and served with a side of sour cream. Sautéed spinach and grilled seasonal vegetables accompany grilled daily fish specialties, which allow diners to sample the flavors of the Nordic sea without the discomfort of wearing cumbersome diving bells at the dinner table. Evening diners can potably punch-up their meals with a variety of wine and imported European beers, including the cider-like Kataja Olut from Finland. Though not valid with today's Groupon, Finnish Bistro features happy hour specials Monday–Saturday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.