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“Four strikes we're out”
Review of Citizen Cafe - CLOSED

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Citizen Cafe
Restaurant details
St. Paul, MN
Level Contributor
167 reviews
76 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
“Four strikes we're out”
Reviewed December 2, 2012

We first ate at the Citizen Cafe a couple of years back. The place was crowded so we were willing to accept less than fantastic service, especially given that the food was fabulous and the atmosphere pleasant. We revisited a few months later with our kids. We stood in the foyer for 15 minutes without ever being acknowledged. We decided they were busy and tried somewhere else. Several months after that we returned with some friends. We were seated right away but again the rest of the service was sadly lacking. Tonight we gave it one last try. The place this time was nearly empty. We were seated immediately. It then took at least 5-10 minutes for the server to return for our drink order. At that time we placed and order for an appetizer and were told the specials. She returned with our drinks we placed our order. Our food came. Our appetizer never showed. My husband asked for ketchup. Our server asked if homemade ketchup was OK but likewise it never showed. All that being said the food is REALLY good. Is the terrible service worth it.....for us, not any more.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank patricia452
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

14 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    7
    4
    1
    1
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level Contributor
60 reviews
39 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“A Good Place”
Reviewed November 3, 2012

This is one of my favorite places for breakfast. The pulled pork and roasted vegetable hashes are particular favorites. Gravlax Benedict is a weekend brunch treat. Coffee is always good. Service is top drawer. Even better, the staff is delightfully tolerant of my aging groups idiosyncratic behavior. I've never been here for dinner, but would expect much the same experience. Very worthwhile.

  • Visited November 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank alleyraven
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
30 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Great Food in Powderhorn”
Reviewed October 31, 2012

YUM! Excellent dinner at Citizen Cafe. Super fresh and homemade dishes. Interesting flavors. No nonsense atmosphere--comfortable, no pretenses. Good vibes. Great prices/value. Definitely recommend!!

  • Visited October 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Janet208
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level Contributor
39 reviews
29 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Citizen Cafe - trying to find its niche?”
Reviewed September 30, 2012

First I have to say there are some misleading things about the restaurant's name and image. It is not really a cafe, but a restaurant. You can't drop in for a cup of joe and a muffin. There were no laptops out. The tables have cloths, then a sheet of kraft paper on top to protect the tablecloth. The napkins are cloth. The whole "Citizen - a Cafe for the People" vibe is conveyed by using populist and pop art from the 1930s through the 1950s of a very pedestrian kind. (Except the menopause ad in the ladies' rest room, which is a scream.) There is no attempt at flaunting recycling or environmentally friendly food purchasing or even fair trade coffee.
I have had both breakfast (twice) and lunch here. A few things were standout. Lunch - I had a starter and a sandwich and lemonade, The lemonade is excellent. The starter was spaghetti squash with a basil cream - what an inspired combination! It was delish. The sandwich was OK.
For breakfast you are given "complimentary breakfast breads". Though better than not getting anything, I would criticize this. You get two tiny squares each of two kinds of bread, a berry loaf and some kind of flavored scone. You get with this a little cup of softened unsalted butter and another of homemade jam. While all the component parts are great quality, I am annoyed that the butter and jam are equal to or greater than the breads in volume! This is either really wasteful or you have to act like a clod and eat butter and jam with nothing on it. Both breakfasts I had were very good with one exception. I think the hashbrowns are previously frozen. The coffee is excellent. The wine list is small but perfectly formed and they sell bottles of wine for $20 on Sunday afternoons. The service is very good. There may be a short wait on Saturday and Sunday breakfast, but otherwise I would say reservations not needed unless you have a large party.

Visited May 2012
Helpful?
Thank deborama
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis
Level Contributor
22 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Delicious breakfast in a cozy atmosphere!”
Reviewed March 7, 2012

A group of eight of us, including one small child, had brunch here last weekend. Half of us ordered mimosas (pulpy orange juice - yum!) and the other half, sake and bacon bloody marys (a big hit with the men in our group). The bacon is thick cut, and while a vegetarian myself, received rave reviews from others.
Between our drinks and food, our server brought out several little plates of muffin slices, scone pieces, etc. with house-made marmalade and butter from (my favorite!) Hope Creamery, down in Steele County. Love the incorporation of local, quality businesses and the from-scratch items.
Most in our group ordered the hash - the bacon and ham hash, and the veggie hash. Both were well-received. Several of the ladies (myself included) ordered the eggs benedict. You are given a choice between ham or spinach (vegetarian score!) and I definitely enjoyed mine. Had to order hashbrowns on the side (it was that kind of day!). Otherwise, the eggs benedict are served with fruit: canteloupe, honeydew and pineapple. I treated myself here, but one option on the menu definitely caught my eye, for days when I'm health-conscious: organic egg white omlette with build-your-own ingredients. Definitely made a mental note to come back.
Speaking of from-scratch items, Citizen Cafe even makes their own ketchup. I am a ketchup afficionado, so while the house-made stuff was definitely a little bland (think more like a slightly jazzed up tomato sauce), the effort was appreciated.
This is a little gem and definitely worth checking out. I must add - all staff were engaging and pleasant - so, thank you Citizen Cafe, for a great brunch!

  • Visited March 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank ardenlily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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