I continue to scour this area, and beyond, for destinations that motivates my senses and act as a template for better business practices. These are a few downtown options that I have always been impressed with and hope that you can make time to enjoy a meal within their walls.
Lecosho: Matt Janke won me over years ago at his gourmet counter in the market known as Matt’s in the Market. Today, Lecosho is always among my favorites to visit. It’s convenient and semi-hidden location on Harbor Steps makes this a great destination downtown for lunch, happy hour, and dinner.
Beloved Dish: Tie between the anchovy salad or the roasted chicken
Special detail: Great happy hour & late night menu!
Farestart: Their tagline is “the most socially responsible crouton you’ll ever eat.” This is a comprehensive 16 week training program combining hands on food service training with classroom instruction, individual case management and job placement services. This program prepares homeless and disadvantaged men and women for jobs in the restaurant and hospitality industry and helps them to keep those jobs.
Each Thursday evening they host Guest Chef Night where a different local area restaurant brings their culinary team to work with the students in preparing a 3 course meal for only $29.95, with a 100% of those proceeds going back into the program.
Beloved Chef: Paratti Café (His business partner is a former graduate of this program)
Special Detail: Farestart offers catering options too!
Favorite Server: Timothy