In Culinary News

Reading goes hand-in-hand with a good cup of coffee, glass of wine, or cocktail. Maybe a nibble or two. A thought-provoking book can be savored alone, shared with a friend, or discussed with a group. The latest venue to open on the westernmost edge of the River Market at 304 Delaware St. can fulfill all of these needs. Our Daily Nada (an Ernest Hemingway reference in case you were wondering) is a wonderfully curated collection of books, bites, and beverages for a sophisticated, contemplative experience. Every book you pick up is guaranteed to delight, even those in the kids’ nook. And with menu selections like avocado toast, charcuterie, and chili lime cashews, both body and mind will be sated.

Fans of “build your own dish,” like lovers of Chipotle and Pizzeria Locale, are going to rave over Freestyle Poké, located at 509 Delaware St. Virtually unheard of a few years ago, Poke is a traditional Hawaiian dish of diced raw fish, typically tuna or octopus, served with any number of other ingredients. Pick from a signature bowl or assemble your own freestyle bowl from a selection of healthful and delicious base (like quinoa, zucchini noodles, or forbidden rice), a protein (Ahi tuna, salmon, chicken, or tofu), plus additions of vegetables, marinades, toppings, and sauces. It’s as if you have your own personal chef to prep and assemble your meal. And they’re really friendly!

Feeling an urge to visit the Outback but don’t have 20 hours to fly there for lunch? Banksia Bakehouse & Cafe can take you to the land down under in a flash. Located in the historic Cosby Hotel Building (just west of the corner of 9th and Baltimore), this Australian-infused outpost boasts an in-house bakery and a diverse internationally influenced menu. Open for breakfast, brunch, and lunch, they also offer outdoor seating, an event space and catering. More reasons to visit: delicious Aussi-style coffee (there is a difference), a huge selection of pastries, and you can tell your coworkers you had kangaroo sausage for breakfast.

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