Grand Central Bakery
~ 2230 SE Hawthorne Blvd Portland, OR 97214 ~ http://grandcentralbakery.com/ ~
We stopped at this Pacific Northwest Bakery chain while waiting to meet some friends. It had some tasty chai and great cross buns for the Easter holiday season. It was originally created by Gwen Bassetti at Seattle’s historic Pioneer Square, locally owned chain dedicated to artisan baking. An assortment of breads, baked goods, sandwiches, soups, teas, coffees, and juices can be found here. Her original sandwich start started in Seattle’s newly refurbished Grand Central Hotel Building where it changed names from Gwen’s roadside farm stand on Lopez Island in the 60’s to the Grand Central Bakery in 1989. Famous for her Como loaves. Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Chocola Tree Organic Eatery
* 1595 West Hwy 89A, Sedona, Arizon 86336 *
As I try to live the healthier lifestyle, incorporating more vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free into my diet, we were very happy to see a gluten-free vegan restaurant in Sedona. Though “Sedona” being “Sedona” amped up in price tags taking advantage of alternative travelers and tourists I met with what I expected – HIGH priced menu items for unforgivable quantity, quality, or measure. I’m not sure why these trendy spots feel they need to over-charge people who want to be healthy as it seems counter-productive to what the movement stands for in my opinion. New age is new age, and this would be one of the classic hotspots for that kind. Don’t get me wrong, the food was decent, but the manner of delivery is not. First off, everything was way over-priced – and would have been a place I normally would not even give a moment of my time. I was however with a group that wanted to try their food, so in we went. I figured I’d try to be minimalistic with price so was going to go for the coconut curry soup. But the waiter says “its cold – is that ok?” I said, “cold? can’t you heat it up?” and he said “No that’s how its served, we don’t have any way to heat it up here, we don’t use microwaves and we don’t have a stove top”. Okay, being health-conscious I get the “no microwave” but really? A restaurant without a stove top? really? In addition, the soup would not come with bread, even though the bowl of soup was in the $8-10 price range. Really? If I wanted some bread, I’d have to order it separately and it would cost $4-8. I was sickened with the concept. So I went with the Gluten-free waffles. They were good, the middle part. The edges were a bit hard. If they don’t have a stove top, I suppose it was done in a waffle maker. Anyhow – neo-hippie decor with southwestern style, staff was friendly (though full of themselves), and it was crowded. If you’ve a lot of money to toss out the window, into the New Age lifestyle, this would be the perfect place for you – I’m sure the minimalistic food would be perfect for your palate. Not mine. Will never return. They claim 100% organic and/or wild-crafted produce with a 95% seasonal menu. They state they use artesian spring fed source free of chlorine or fluoride water in their cooking and serving. Rating: 3 stars out of 5. Visited 11/24/2013.
World Cup Cafe
* 102A Paseo Del Pueblo Sur * Taos, NM 87571 * 575-737-5299 *
A great little coffee shop in the heart of Taos‘ City Center / Plaza, in northern New Mexico. While parking is not all that convenient, finding a space is worth it for a cup o’ joe here. The Italian soda is nice, the chai spicy, and the drinks good. Service is average, and prices are fair. World Cup has its own charm … Rated: 4 stars out of 5. Visited 11/22/2013.
This cafe was a delightful gem as we pulled to the plaza in which its buried behind a few stores in as a “last chance” food stop heading from Taos towards the Rio Grande Gorge and Bridge. A snowy cold afternoon, we were surprised to find a gluten-free, free-range, organic bakery / cafe / restaurant with offerings to our required palate. I was a bit hesitant at first as the meal took a bit longer than I’m used to waiting for, but I was very pleased with the masterpiece we received. The food was delicious, wholeheartedly healthy, and satisfying. In addition we were blessed with the ability to meet the owner, and she graced us with a gift of some home-made flan since we had been waiting a bit. Definitely a location we’ll be dropping by in our future visits to Taos area. With offerings for vegans, vegetarians, free-rangarians, and the gluten-free crowd, you can’t go wrong with this farm-to-table venue. They also offer free wifi, outdoor dining, private party space, and a great cafe to read, relax, and socialize in. We were on-the-go, so were taking out so next time will definitely stay awhile.
According to taos news in their article about this new cafe to Taos, Micah Roseberry, the owner opened on August 21st of 2013 as she had been farming in Northern New Mexico for over 25 years and wanted to bring the farm directly to the table, and therefore Farmhouse cafe was born. All of the produce comes right from the farm outside of the restaurant or from her farm up in Cerro, as are the flowers, and those that do not come from her farm are delivered via organic free-range farms from the local community. She’s into community and building a local food system as her non-GMO organic market. They serve breakfast and lunch as well as a farmer’s market where locals can sell their produce every wednesday from 3-6 pm.
Our first visit awards this great cafe a 4 1/2 stars out of 5. 11/22/2013.
Kas Bah * Rheinort 2 * 40213 Düsseldorf, DE * Telefon: 0211 / 8693888 * .Öffnungszeiten: Mo – Do, 12:00 – 01:00 Uhr; Fr – Sa, 12:00 – open end; So, 12:00 – 01:00 Uhr; .Happy Hour: Mo – So: 17:00 – 20:00 Uhr *
A great little Morroccon cafe in the heart of old town Dusseldorf. My visit to this decent-sized place was with some local friends I was visited as we were looking for a quiet place to chat and catch up before making a night out on the town. Some of the cities finest cocktails, desserts, and bar-time snacks can be found here. An incredible ambience, hospitable staff, and a great place to hang out while visiting this famous city. A must visit location. While I can’t comment on the food as the only item I personally ordered was the hot chocolate with a shot a bailey’s Irish cream, I’ve been told the menu items here are fabulous. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
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We popped into this hole-in-the-wall quick Turkish cuisine spot near the Phoenix for some lunch fare. While the service was average, the food wasn’t anything to write home about. All three of us felt the fare was unsatisfactory. The restaurant and take-away offers pizza, turkish cuisine, and indian fare. They are open late at night, often serving the bar crowds. They have outdoor dining and free wi-fi. Family owned, Ridvan Sadil and his family took over the business early in 2010. Not so hot. Rating: 2 stars out of 5. Visited 4/24/11 – review by Leaf McGowan.
If you’re looking for a deep in the heart of Canberra breakfast spot that is a little hidden gem, try to Canberra YHA’s “Bytes Cafe” for a economically affordable and delicious meal. They serve other meals besides breakfast, but must declare that would be where they are above normal in quality and taste. Atypical service that you can expect from a YHA restaurant, with a semi selve serve manner, the staff is ultra friendly and the cooking is delicious. This little hotspot was one of my favorite Australian breakfast locales. Hours of operation is different than most “restaurants” as their service is more oriented towards their hostel guests, but it has an entrance from the street and welcomes in the public. I can’t recommend more the berry pancakes. Extraodinary! The joint is also a great cyber cafe with internet terminals, computers, and wifi service at your service! Rating 5 stars out of 5. Visited 04/24/2011. Reviewed 11/14/2011 by Thomas Baurley, Technogypsie.com.
Down to Earth Cafe
* 308 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North * Melbourne, Victoria, Australia * 3068 * http://www.facebook.com/pages/Down-to-Earth-Coffee-and-Tea-House/ *
A pleasant little outdoor/indoor cafe in a Melbourne neighbourhood serving snacks, desserts, and light meals with tea and coffee. Pleasant service and nice surroundings, this cafe aims to please. They also whip up a great chai latte. Rating: 4 stars out of 5. Review by Leaf McGowan.
A great little hole-in-the-wall chain counter/restaurant with fast service dishing out pies for Australians since 2003. First founded in Sydney, “Pie face” greets its hungry customers with a happy face on the pie crust face filled like a pot pie with yummy delicious veggies and/or meats. It was founded by Betty Fong and Wayne Homschek. Originally fashion designers, they first served pies to their audience to get everyone in the mood for their fashion show, and got such great applause for their pies, decided to open a business. The pies are custom made for their customers, and all hand made and baked. Delicious! I’ve enjoyed these fabulous little fast tasty pies in Melbourne, Brisbane, and obviously is also available in Sydney. Rating : 4.5 stars out of 5. Review by Leaf McGowan.
An innovative design and a wonderful organization to spend your coffee money on. STREAT = “Street Youth” + “Street Food” + “Street Culture”. It is a coffee shop/cafe/cart found throughout Melbourne Australia that takes portions of its sales to help tackle youth homelessness and disadvantage. They not only campaign for the cause, but put sales to the financial needs, and employment for the young people affected by such hardships. They tackle the issues with social support by means of industry training and employment opportunities in their street cafes, offering delicious and cost-effective meals centered around street culture. They believe in lifelong learning, tackling problems with imagination and passion, having healthy meals and drinks, birthing new ideas, connecting individuals and communities together, while striving for sustainability in all of their activities. And …. they serve a mean cup o’ joe or chai. Rating : 4 stars out of 5. Review by Tom Baurley.
Australian Electric Current
Just as with any other region of the world, the electrical current differs from continent to continent. Oceania is no different within the country of Australia. This current runs on 220-240 Watts. As with any other current, the Australian Current is accessed by devices plugging into AC power plugs and sockets. Most of these have an on/off switch on the socket for safety, sustainability, and energy management. The socket is connected to by an electric plug which have a “male” type of connector that connect into a “female” type of connection called the socket. This socket, with two slots and a hole match a three prong plug. These are called the “Australasian switched 3-pin dual power point” or the AS 3112 or standard C112. This is commonly found and utilized in Australian, New Zealand, Fiji, Argentian, Papua New Guinea, and the Solomon Islands. It has a grounding pin with two flat current-carrying pins forming an upside down “V” shape. While different, they are style after the British current and plug. World travellers will needa plug converter based from their country’s wattage and current system. Be careful with the wattage and amps for your specific device. Especially coming from the United States or Canada where the voltage is much much lower.
* http://www.agiasophiacoffeeshop.com/ * 2902 W Colorado Avenue *
Colorado Springs, CO 80904 * (719) 632-3322 *
A great little coffee shop and reading library right off of Colorado Avenue in historical Old Colorado City of Colorado Springs, Colorado. Old world charm with a great cup of Joe and spiritual benedictine monks chanting in the background. It is truly a place to the heart of what coffee shops began .. a place to discuss business, religion, politics, and philosophy. They take that trait to heart and not only serve great caffeinated beverages, but pastries, desserts, and cafe-style lunch dishes. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.
England / United Kingdom * http://www.pumpkincafeshop.co.uk/ *
One of Britain’s railway cafe’s that has become quite infamous, the Pumpkin Cafe’s serve most of traveller’s snack and quick meal needs before and after their travel. Notorious for their pastries, chocolates, coffees, and teas that you can come to find at every Pumpkin Cafe – the prices are reasonable and service excellent. It is also a great place to get magazines to read for your journey as well as tables/chairs to sit down while awaiting your trip. For the laptop user, plugs are sometimes available though sparse. Rating: 3 stars out of 5.
Coffee Beans Clean Jeans
* 23 West Northern Avenue * Pueblo, CO 81004-3109 * (719) 545-1034 *
A little coffee shop meets laundromat where you can eat, drink, and enjoy free wifi while awaiting your clothes to wash and dry. With an electronic guage above the door – you can see when your laundry is done without stepping away from your coffee to check. Friendly staff and clean establishment. The coffee and drinks seem to be all pre-made, but the pad is definitely a class above most laundromats. Ratin: 2.5 stars out of 5.
* 1100 S. Santa Fe Dr./300 W. Mississippi Ave * Denver, Colorado 80223 * (303) 733-0795 * 24 Hours *
The Breakfast King looks like a typical old-fashioned chain diner, but its a unique infamous greasy spoon of Denver sub-culture. All American roadside diner, with classic 70’s style decor, bright orange booths, and a large menu of selections. The Westword calls it a “culinary time capsule” that still serves Coney Island hot dogs, chiliettes, and other classic foods. I second their observations. Located right next to I-25 its definitely a great stop off for weary travellers and a great place for breakfast after a night of clubbing. The service is fast, friendly, and the classical diner atmosphere you’d expect from the diner age. I had the Pancake sandwich with scrambled eggs inside … delicious. Visited 1/17/2010. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
King Chef’s Diner
* 131 E. Bijou St., Colorado Springs, Colorado * 719.636.5010 * http://www.kingschefdiner.com/
My first experience at the King Chef’s was pretty good and tasty. While I only got the “enormous” pancake scramble sandwich, I found the place to be reasonably priced, with large portions, friendly staff, and good service. Its nice to have a diner right in the heart of Colorado Springs. I’m guessing its a new addition to the downtown scene, a bar/club stumble from the Springs’ main clubs, and having late night hours. They were brilliant in choosing this location. They are known for their green chili dishes. Apparently there is a smaller diner outlet (13 seat original purple castle) on Costilla in downtown that is also a popular place (but with little seating) that I’ve somehow missed over the last four years partying downtown. This larger Bijou Street location has plenty of seating any day of the week and are now open late on fridays and saturday nights. Apparently they are known for their burgers, burritos, melts, and chili dishes. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Bayfront Kava Bar
Bayfront Coffee, Kava & Tea (Hilo),(808) 935-1155 * Hilo, Big Island, Hawaii
In downtown Hilo on the Big Island of Hawaii, me and my comrade stumbled into this wonderful little hole-in-the-wall tea and coffeehouse that specializes in “Kava”. We stopped in for a wonderful Kava sharing between high school friends. Wonderful barista and service. Kava has a unique taste and takes getting used to. But have to say, having had a few kavas introducted to my palate, they serve up some wonderful kava in the traditional wooden bowls. Kava is a ancient crop of the Pacific, in the islands of Hawaii, known also as ‘awa. Kava is sedating and used to relax without disrupting mental clarity. It helps alleviate stress, insomnia, and anxiety. The ground root/bark is combined with water to make a grog. A moderately potent kava drink causes effects within 20–30 minutes that last for about two and a half hours, but can be felt for up to eight hours. The effects of kava are most often compared to alcohol. The sensations, in order of appearance, are slight tongue and lip numbing (the lips and skin surrounding may appear unusually pale); mildly talkative and sociable behavior; clear thinking; calmness; relaxed muscles; and a sense of well-being. If you’re ever in Hilo, I highly recommend dropping by this cafe and having yourself a cup-o-kava. Rating 5 stars out of 5.
* 137 W North Bend Way * North Bend, WA 98045 * 425-831-5511 * http://twedescafe.com/ * Hours: M-Th 6:30am-8:00pm ; F,Sa 6:30am-9:00pm ; Su 6:30am-7:00pm *
I’m not sure why I have an attraction to this place outside of the expected charm. I’m definitely a big fan of Twin Peaks, and the novelty of coming here once for that was enough, but there is an ‘odd’ charm about this place, even though its changed substantially since the filmings and had been burnt down as well. The food is pretty decent and you get enormous portions, though the menu is more expensive than it used to be. Everyone raves about the “Cherry Pie” – which is good, but not out-of-this-world good that everyone states, and certainly not worth the price you pay for it. I guess that whole ritual eating of the cherry pie is again part of the film novelty. The Cafe was originally called “Thompson’s Cafe” and was built in 1941 by Roy Thompson. The cafe lasted through World War II, the Depression, and the boom swings of the timber industry of Washington. The Cafe changed names to “Mar-T Cafe” as a pitstop for tourists and locals in the 1950’s. It was in 1990 that David Lynch chose it and the Snoqualmie Valley as a location for his series “Twin Peaks”. It was this series that immortalized his cafe and made the cherry pie famous as well as the “Damn fine cup o’ coffee!” saying in these parts. The cafe burnt down in 2000, but was rebuilt and remodeled becoming a significant part of “Historic downtown North Bend”. Besides the movie trivia, cherry pie, and coffee … the cafe is notorious for its large portions, home-cooked food, burgers, Big breakfasts, and home-style dinners. On this visit, I went for the Hot Cakes, sausage, and Hash Browns. Good stuff. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
* 615 W Clinton St * Ridgeway, CO 81432 * (970) 626-9800
We drove around in circles while passing through Ridgeway trying to find the right place for a road stop / pit stop / late brunch for these weary travellers. After hitting several places that were too expensive, too crowded, or not open, we caught Kate’s Place just before they were about to close and they were pleased to stay open to refresh these adventurers. Thank you sooo much. Good thing too, as the food and service was extroadinary. Rated very highly from the local community as it was recommended by the crowded restaurant we hit, it sure brought a slice of heaven to us. The cafe is decorated home-style, country-kitchen, with old signs and alternative decor. Lots of open windows and a nice dining patio outside (we didn’t use as the weather was sketchy). The food was definitely delightful. I had the Egg Salad Sandwich, while my friends had the breakfast platter, hashbrowns, grits, and fruit. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.
Baked in Telluride Bakery
127 South Fir * Telluride, CO 81435 * 970 728-4775 * http://www.bakedintelluride.com
A very charming little bakery in the heart of Telluride with a full fledge selection of baked goods with a deli and a cafe. Just 1/2 blocks south of Telluride’s mainstreet, this venue welcomes all folks with homemade baked breads, bagels, pastries, pizza, sandwich, and soups. At nighttime they serve a homemade Pasta dinner with wine and beer served. Great service and wonderful tasty foods. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Coyote Den Cafe
coyotescoffeeden.com * 675 State Highway 115, Penrose, CO – (719) 372-3012 *
A nice little coffee and pastry stop on Highway 50 in the small town of Penrose, Colorado. Old West flavor and style, this little den will suit your highway awakening needs and sensiate your palates with tasty goodies. One of my favorite pitstops in the area. Also has local art and crafts. Definite place to stop. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
* 1019 S Tejon St * Colorado Springs, CO 80903-4238 * (719) 520-0672 *
What a charming little America meets Europe coffee n’ tea house. This little joint is off-center from downtown Springs but a certain treasured find for those seeking a hole-in-the-wall place to hang and do brew, games, conversations, and light meals. Comfy couches and elegant decor, just like sitting in your plush living room. You can get the pot of tea of your choosing for your lengthy visit. Intriguing collections of old photos too to give you some old-fashion entertainment. Great cookies, cakes, teas, and coffees. Sandwiches are quite nice too. Was a perfect place for me and my date to catch afternoon tea and good conversation before viewing the new Star Trek! Thanks Wendy …. Rating: 5 stars out of 5. (visited 5/16/09) As always, Montague’s never lets me down – another wonderful visit, friendly service, an iced chai while doing wifi-n-chai on a comfortable couch. Montague’s rocks! Rating: 5 stars out of 5. (visited 6/24/2009) Reviewed at: Wanderwords.com, Virtualtourist.com, Technogypsie.com.
7/9/09: Another very pleasant visit while doing wifi n’ chai and enjoying a turkey sandwich while hoping to catch up on blogs and adventure journals from my trips. I love this place. Rated: 5 stars out of 5.
Wednesday, 8 April 2009
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Onward the adventurers met with the tour guide leading them through the Red Light District on a spectacular tour learning the history of the sex trade, industry, prostitution, and cannabis culture of Amsterdam. The adventurers met some amazing new friends from around the world as well while exploring the darker and redder side of the city. At the end of the tour, those who wanted to, went into the Belushi Bar for their free shots of Jager and some happy hour specials. New friends from Ireland, Australia, Britain, and France … the adventurers chatted, drank, and headed over to a cafe later before figuring out how to get back to the Zeeburg hostel. Hungry, the hostelers dropped into a restaurant for some fries with a tasty peanut satay sauce. In process, two charming sisters introduced themselves as Karolien and Kristien who tried to pursuade everyone off to dancing to celebrate Karolien’s successful interview. Only Sir Thomas Leaf took them up on the offer. The three of them piled into a taxi and was off to the heart of Amsterdam. The original club that Karolien wanted to take them to was closed, so they went to another decent sized club playing “Techno Light” which appears to be a common popular music type in Holland. Dancing and drinking …. the trio had a blast. When Sir Thomas Leaf made it back to the hostel, it was the wee hours of the morning, and he quickly passed out. His daughter princess Breanna didn’t even wake.
* Breite Straße 80–90, im Einkaufszentrum DuMont-Carré, 50667 Köln, Germany * +49 221 2708680 * www.woyton.de/koeln.html
A cafe that is the German’s equivalent of “Starbucks”. Nice atmosphere and artsy decorated, obviously community hangout establishment. The prices are about half the cost that you would find in a Starbucks. However, the chai tea, was so watered down it just tasted like bad water. Was not impressed. I think I’ll stick to Starbucks since I’m a chai drinker. Rating: 2 stars out of 5.
Alki Cafe * 2726 Alki Ave SW * Seattle, WA 98116 * (206) 935-0616 * http://alkicafe.home.comcast.net/~alkicafe/
A wonderful medium-sized cafe right on Alki Beach in West Seattle with full views of the mini-Liberty Goddess statue and the bay. They are open daily from 8:00 am til 8:30 pm. They have plenty of seating in their two rooms, each with views of the ocean. The service is prompt and friendly, and the food delicious. On 12/29/08 I ordered the Salmon sandwich which was perfect and hit the spot wonderfully. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Tully’s Coffee * 1401 4th Ave * Seattle, WA 98101 * 206-625-0600 * http://www.tullys.com/
Tully’s Coffee, another Seattle favorite like Starbucks, that is slowly growing to be a large world chain – most notorious for its coffee. Tully’s opened its doors in 1992, they boast proudly about their handcrafted blends that are different than the rest. They also claim to be the last independent pedigreed-Seattle coffee company even though they are spreading quickly. They claim community is the big part of their stores. My visit to Tully’s at this location on 12/29/08 went very well, but not much different than a Starbucks experience. The chai and the pumpkin loaf I tried, not much different. However they do have free wifi internet, so my wifi n’ chai experience was much nicer than the pay per hour that Starbucks has. Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5.
Wired Monk Coffee Bistro * 2610 4th Avenue West * Vancouver, BC V6K 1P7, Canada * (604) 742-1752 * http://www.kitsmonk.com/
Artsy fine-elderly design coffee bistro with food and drinks, coffees, chai, teas, and pastries. Free wifi. Didn’t find the service that great, employees seemed bored and bitter. Not many plugs available for laptops. Service was still good. Wifi good. Plain and not a place I’d go out of my way to go back to. Rating: 2 stars out of 5.
Cuppa Joe’s Coffee Shop * 3744 West 4th Ave, Vancouver, BC * (604) 224-3687 * http://www.cuppajoecoffee.com/cajc/stores/kits.html
A great little local (but Vancouver chain) two story coffee house right off of 4th, conveniently located in Kitslano bordering Point Grey bordering Jericho Beach. Just a short jolt of a walk from the Vancouver HI. Free wifi internet just ask for the password at the counter. Great chai, pastries, and coffee. A Starbucks alternative. Carries organic and free trade. Always good music and apparently has great beer on tap (I’m not a beer drinker so can’t comment on that one). Staff and regulars are very friendly. Its an artsy joint with good music. Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5.