The Colectivo cafe on the corner of 68th Street and Wells is its first freestanding location. It’s a got the usual offerings: an extensive coffee, tea and cocoa menu, plenty of decadent and healthy food options, and free Wi-Fi all day long.
The 68th Street space rocks with a custom fireplace in the back room, six roll-up garage doors and – my favorite feature – an outdoor fire pit. And, yes, there were people out there by the fire in the middle of one Milwaukee’s coldest Decembers on record!
Looking for more great coffices in the Milwaukee area?
Spinach salad with strawberries and goat cheese
Pegasus Restaurant, on Greenfield Avenue in Milwaukee, is just a couple of blocks away from the Wisconsin State Fair RV Park. It has coffee and tea to go with the free Wi-Fi, but it’s not the fancy stuff. We’re talking basic beans and bags of Lipton here. But that’s not the reason for making Pegasus your coffice du jour… or de la nuit.
Pegasus is a grown-up version of the all-night college diner. It’s open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The tables are spacious; the booths are roomy. It’s casual, so there’s no pressure to dress fancy or worry about breaking out your laptop.
You get free wine or beer or dessert with your meal. Before you get too excited, though, the gratis vino is a choice been a Chablis or a rose. Did I mention it’s not fancy? If you’d rather drink outside the box, they have some cool retro cocktails to choose from. How fun would it be to mix new and old by writing a blog post while sipping a Brandy Manhattan!
Pretty in pink: a blushing Greek dressing
The menu is made up mostly of classic American dishes, but some Greek selections are sprinkled in. The Greek salad dressing is a lovely shade of pink with crumbles of feta, and I give the place props for serving their salads on chilled plates. The spinach pie is a well balanced blend of veggie and cheese with a nice flaky crust. The chicken breast is tender. Serving sizes are generous. I brought most of my entree home and enjoyed it for lunch the next day.
Athenian Style Chicken Breast & Spinach Pie with rice pilaf and Athenian sauce
So the next time a deadline means you’re working at midnight and all the usual coffices have gone dark, Pegasus might be just the place to work, drink, and get your Greek on.
It was wonderful for me to work at the Cozy Tea Cart Cafe while we were in Brookline for the week: the commute, the tea, the macaroons, the views. It got even better when I realized that our last few days in the area corresponded with NH Open Doors, which happened to be taking place at The Cozy Tea Cart!
NH Open Doors is a statewide shopping and touring event that, this year, took place on November 2nd and 3rd. It’s all about enjoying the natural beauty of New Hampshire while shopping for items made in the state and sampling food from local restaurants and vendors. The Cozy Tea Cart Cafe was one of this year’s participants.
Along with a sample Thanksgiving dinner, the event at The Cozy Tea Cart included a meet-n-greet with New Hampshire artist Melanie Chouinard from The Silver Branch. Melanie is a polymer clay fantasy sculptor, and her works are both breathtaking and adorable. The tiny, sleeping babies adorned with faery wings are magical. Her mushroom villages, with stone paths leading over the moss to petite front doors, are nestled in a variety of delicate teacups. I bought a large one for just $32. (I’m hoping a little museum putty will hold it tight as we motor down the road.)
In addition to Melanie’s pieces, the store at The Cozy Tea Cart offered plenty of gift options for tea lovers: Victorian and Japanese-style tea sets, tea towels and cozies, magazines, notecards, dessert plates, loose-leaf tea, lemon curd and oat biscuits to create the perfect tea party, and more. There was no excuse for leaving empty-handed!
All that shopping and art appreciation builds an appetite. The free Thanksgiving sampling dinner and tea pairing took care of it.
- Our Sister’s Nuts provided the appetizer.
- Chestnut soup was paired with Almond Snowflake Tea. (I used it as gravy over my turkey. Delish!)
- Herb-roasted turkey was paired with Ceylon Breakfast Tea.
- Chilled pineapple cranberry relish was paired with Ginger Pear Spice Tea. (That was the tea I drank when I was working. Yummy!)
- Brown butter and sage sweet potato ravioli was paired with Fireside Green Apple Tea. (Love the idea of serving ravioli at Thanksgiving!)
- Roasted garlic mashed potatoes were paired with Iron Buddha Oolong.
- Glazed maple vanilla carrots were paired with Hot Apple Cider Tea.
- Dessert was gluten-free gingerbread with maple buttercream frosting paired with Vanilla Indulgence Herbal Rooibos.
Candy Roux of Our Sister’s Nuts setting up her treats for NH Open Doors
I’m a Jane-come-lately to the whole wine thing. It’s only in the last year or so that I’ve developed an appreciation for the stomped grape. I still don’t understand “legs” or “bouquet”, but I enjoy a glass of red with dinner. Mike doesn’t like wine. He doesn’t even really like beer. He drinks Bud Light, which true beer aficionados scoff at. Even though Mike is not a vinophile, he’s gracious enough to accompany me to the occasional wine tasting.
After our adventure at the Rushmore Tramway, we stopped at Prairie Berry Winery for a free wine tasting. Prairie Berry is a family winery run by fifth generation winemaker Sandi Votja. The large space holds a plethora of wines from dry to dessert, and there are plenty of wine-related gifts to pick up with your bottle. Sample five wines of your choosing gratis and then head over to the deli counter for fresh-made food. (We were lucky and got a counter girl who gave us a couple of extra tastings.)
Prairie Berry’s signature wine is the Red Ass Rhubarb, a sweet-tart wine made from rhubarb and raspberries. It was my favorite of the five wines I tasted, and I bought a bottle I look forward to uncorking soon. Prairie Berry is a super fun place to visit. It was one of the few times I regretted being in the RV and not being able to hold more stuff. I saw lots of goodies I wanted to buy, particularly gifts for my friends and family.
Prairie Berry is open 7 days a week with tastings going on continuously. It’s a nice, quick (we were in and out in a half hour!) stop as you tour Rushmore and environs in South Dakota.