This is going to be long, because we are just that impressed......
We stumbled on Eat! shortly after moving to town from down south. We were eating almost every meal out for a period of 3-4 weeks due to a recent relocation for work and a lack of facilities in which to cook our own food. I've never been big on sandwiches, so we passed Eat! several times and never gave it much thought until my wife finally talked me into dropping in one day. That was all it took. We don't eat out now as much as we were, but when we do, the only time we are willing to go anywhere else is if Eat! is closed. Seriously, it is just about the only place we'll go now.
The good: For starters, eating out for weeks got old. Really old. We had hit almost every restaurant in White Bear numerous times and were feeling the financial and physical effects. And then, there was the light at the end of the tunnel on the corner of Banning and 5th.
A really, really interesting menu, very original, and is mostly healthy while amply filling. Vegetarian? They've got it. Meaty and cheesy? That, too. Homemade treats that make you want to buy everything in the case? Yup. Everything is made right there, and their pride in their work is evident. There are also regular specials that Mr. Smith makes up as he goes along. I miss the pot roast sandwich on pretzel bread like a lost limb.
The menu is much more reasonable than the other places downtown, and serves up better quality food in just the right quantity.
One thing that really impressed us, as we have a small army of children, is the reasonably priced kid's meals, and the fact that they are actually really, really good (no corndogs or fried processed chicken product here). It was nice to find a restaurant in the area that doesn't jump in on the kid's meal racket and attempt to charge near adult prices to serve your little ones insulting (for the price) quantities of overly processed slop. Like on the regular menu, there are some healthy options on the kids menu as well (salads with every ingredient you could think of, roll-ups, etc), and the folks there have been more than willing to modify the kid's meals to our request.
The service is excellent and they treat you like family/friends, and obviously truly appreciate our/your patronage. They have been exceedingly kind and friendly to our family during our numerous visits, and we always look forward to visiting with the owner and his wife and daughter just as much as chowing down.
The restaurant is cozy and is always impeccably clean.
I could go on more, but y'all get the point.
Between the options, the quality, and the very, very sincere service, we find it really hard to justify going anywhere else, and we really never have the desire to.