We’re all familiar with the half hour lunch break. We’re also familiar with how frantic it can be to search the maze of downtown Minneapolis skyways for a meal that’s healthy, tasty, and local for lunch. Luckily, there are a few gems hidden among the skyways– the latest being SIMPLS, a grab-and-go restaurant catering to all you skyway localvores.

 

Nestled on S. Marquette Ave and S. 6th St. across from the Wells Fargo Tower, SIMPLS embodies everything we at Tiny love about small, local businesses– a friendly staff, a fun atmosphere, and organic Minnesota-grown foods. That’s why we’re delighted to partner with SIMPLS and serve our organic coffee at their busy downtown location.

 

SIMPLS came to be thanks to friends Ryan Rosenthal and Michael von Fange, after they realized the options for quick and healthy lunches downtown were sparse. Taking matters into their own hands, the two co-founded SIMPLS in September 2014.

 

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“We knew people had a short amount of time for a healthy meal,” Ryan said. “Most people don’t want to spend their whole break looking for lunch, especially a healthy one. We wanted to have a simple experience with simple ingredients here.”

 

The concept for SIMPLS is, as Ryan said, simple. The easy-going restaurant offers a variety of healthy foods in a convenience-store format. SIMPLS isn’t a place to sit down, but rather a place to pick up a tasty salad or healthy snack to enjoy outside, or perhaps back at the office with colleagues. Offering plenty of breakfast options such as granola bars and fruit, SIMPLS also offers more substantial options for lunch, such as housemade soups, salads and sandwiches.

 

simpls_04Among SIMPLS’ local offerings, you can find Sweet Science Ice Cream and St. Pops Popsicles from St. Paul, along with Minneapolis favorites Thumbs Cookies and popcorn from Maddy & Maize. With so many options, SIMPLS always lets you know if the product is local, organic, grass-fed or free-range.

 

To find such fresh and local products, Ryan said he frequently visits the farmers markets and keeps an ear open to what people are talking about most. When SIMPLS hears about a company or product they want to offer to customers, they’ll seek them out, just as they did with us at Tiny Footprint Coffee.

 

“We were looking for an organic, fair trade, local coffee company,” Ryan said. “An employee mentioned Tiny Footprint Coffee to us, and once Michael and I tried it we instantly fell in love. We support the same mission to be organic, locally owned, and sustainable,” he added.

 

This summer SIMPLS has been serving up Tiny Footprint Cold Press Coffee with the option to add homemade vanilla syrup– along with other hot coffee options, of course. On average, SIMPLS sells about 50 cups of coffee a day, but it’s a number that’s always growing.simpls_03

 

While SIMPLS offers many of Tiny’s roasts, our Ethiopian and Nicaraguan coffees have been especially popular. Ryan said that his team is constantly receiving positive feedback about Tiny Footprint Coffee, so he feels confident in the decision to serve our coffees.

 

“It means a lot to have a healthy relationship with Tiny Footprint,” Ryan said. “The customer service is great, and Alan is extremely genuine and cares about his product and clients.”

 

Just like Ryan and Michael, we at Tiny like to keep things simple too. Good coffee, good earth; You drink coffee, we plant trees. 

 

 

Who doesn’t love donuts? They’re fluffy, they’re sugary, and they pair perfectly with a cup of coffee. At Tiny Footprint Coffee we understand the allure of donuts (in fact, we wrote an entire article about them) and we’re always excited to meet people who are as passionate about donuts as we are about coffee. New, local, and passionate about their craft, Rebel Donut Bar certainly fits the bill.

Behind Rebel Donut Bar is the proclaimed “donut dream team,” partners Vince and Kiah. In true rebellious fashion, Vince explained his introduction to donuts over the phone, as he trekked up a mountain in Montana.

“I didn’t really seek out or crave donuts before this,” Vince admitted. Rather, he began eating donuts “out of Minnesota politeness” while on breaks working as a mechanic. But it was learning about the history of the donut that drew him to begin making them himself. Though it started as a hobby, Rebel has taken off in Minneapolis over the past year.

A selection of Rebel Donut Bars bite sized donuts

A selection of Rebel Donut Bars bite sized donuts

Rebel’s success started online, specifically on a vent forum for residents of NE Minneapolis. “People were complaining about not being able to find donuts on a Sunday, and I thought, we can fix that!” Vince laughed. This niche recognition is coupled with Rebel’s mouthwatering Instagram page. Photo credits go to Kiah, who works in marketing when she’s not creating Rebel’s creative donut recipes. The two create their recipes by reimaging desserts and spend time daydreaming about concocting the next unique flavor combinations.

“Unique” is almost a gentle way to describe some of Rebels offerings. With names like “Mother of Dragon Fruit” Rebel offers a full spectrum of flavors. It’s no surprise that our favorite happens to the “Coffee Three Way,” a limited release donut created with none other than Tiny Footprint Coffee. With classic flavors like Maple Pecan and Strawberry Sprinkle, to more adventurous options like Cajun Apricot Habanero, you’ll want to mix and match. Lucky for you, you can.

Unlike other donut shops, Rebel Donut Bar offers donuts in a mini-size—just larger than a quarter—so that you can pick and choose on a “Donut Flight.” That way, Vince said, “You don’t have to dedicate three bucks to something that you might not like.” These flights offer a sampling of four of Rebel’s bite-sized donuts.

Inspired by the beer flight concept, Vince and Kiah wanted to add their own twist on the concept. “I’ve always liked the idea of lots of little samples,” Vince said. And as experience shows, so does everyone else; the flights have been wildly popular in online orders and during events where Rebel is a vendor. Though small, the donut’s impact has been mighty. Rebel has expanded from personal orders to catering weddings and events around the Twin Cities.

Our personal favorite - the "Coffee Three Way" featuring our own Tiny Footprint Coffee

Our personal favorite – the “Coffee Three Way” featuring our own Tiny Footprint Coffee

So what’s next for Rebel Donut Bar?  A retail location is on top of the list. It will likely be in NE Minneapolis, where they currently operate. Envisioned as a “community based space where people can be comfortable kicking it,” coffee is essential. That’s where Tiny Footprint comes back in—the donut bar will also serve plenty of coffee and possibly espresso drinks. Both Rebel and Tiny have strong local roots as well as a shared sense of ecological consciousness, but in the end, it’s that sense of passion that brings us together. To continue feed the passion, check out Rebel Donut Bar for yourself—and don’t forget to get a cup of coffee alongside your donuts!

 

 

Known for its locally inspired interpretation of Nordic cuisine, the modern café FIKA has quickly become a favorite of the Twin Cities restaurant scene. Since it opened, FIKA has drawn customers from all over the city and garnered plenty of critical acclaim for its chef-driven fare.

With a light and airy aesthetic, FIKA fits in well at its home in the American Swedish Institute (ASI), just south of downtown Minneapolis. Synthesizing modern Scandinavian architecture with traditional Swedish construction, the space is contemporary and inviting. Both ASI and FIKA offer a glimpse (and a taste) of tradition and innovation from Minnesota’s Nordic homeland.

Despite Minnesota’s famed Scandinavian heritage, “Fika,” is not a word you hear every day. But the concept is simple: “Fika” describes a daily break, a quiet time to catch up with friends and family, usually over coffee. The atmosphere of FIKA lends easily to its namesake. With great food and ample seating, the café has become locally iconic and nationally recognized, receiving mentions in The New York Times and Vogue.

A glimpse into The American Swedish Institutes cafe FIKA

A glimpse into The American Swedish Institutes cafe FIKA

Led by chef John Krattenmaker, the menu features both traditional and modern interpretations of Swedish cuisine: house made pastries, open-faced sandwiches, and creative salads, all influenced by Swedish recipes old and new. And with a name like FIKA, coffee is essential—the café serves espresso beverages and drip coffee all day long, featuring none other than Tiny Footprint Coffee.

Salad from the award winning FIKA cafe

Lemon Spätzle, a traditional Scandinavian dish

On a recent visit to the café, we were able to try out their latest menu, reflecting more seasonally innovative dishes for summer. Finding a balance between classic Nordic dishes and creative technique and flavor pairings, the FIKA menu reflects the ASI’s unique architectural juxtaposition of the traditional and the contemporary.

 When it comes to coffee, FIKA serves our Peru Apu Cenfrocafe. The café has been carrying this smooth single origin for years—the organic Peruvian medium roast even makes an appearance in FIKA’s famous chocolate torte.

A twist on the traditional open faced sandwich

A twist on the traditional open faced sandwich featuring Juniper Fennel Sasuage

“We love the coffee so much,” says Michael Cochran, FIKA Café’s Food and Beverage Director. “Tiny Footprint has been providing it from day one.” And we’re happy to do so, praise from our customers means a lot to us— we work hard to maintain strong relationships with our partners. For us at Tiny, great relationships start and continue with a perfect cup of coffee.

 

With FIKA, our partnership feels natural. Beyond FIKA and Tiny’s shared local roots, the environmental dedication of ASI melds perfectly with Tiny Footprint’s commitment to the Earth. The ASI’s 2012 addition of the Nelson Cultural Center to it’s orginal home in the 1908 Turnblad mansion/castle, brims with environmental consciousness; the addition, which includes FIKA, is LEED Gold Certified and integrates composting, recycling and usage of postconsumer material. Carbon negative coffee seemed an obvious next step.

A stunning tribute to Scandinavian heritage, FIKA offers a chance for everyone to embrace the definition of the word—no matter your background. So next time you’re in the neighborhood, stop by to get a cup of Tiny Footprint Coffee and a taste of Swedish Culture.

If you are like most of us here at Tiny Footprint Coffee, you grew up drinking Root Beer Floats every now and again. Our nostalgia for childhood summers got us thinking…what if we added a coffee twist to this classic recipe?

 

After a little R&D (not a bad gig if you can get it), we’ve crafted a subtly sweet, but with more kick version of the summer favorite: the cold press float. Along the way with a simple change in proportions we were able to make a more accessible version of the most iconic coffee dessert: the affogato.

 

The affogato is a traditional Italian dessert. Served in chilled glasses all day long, it is revered as a sweet way to combat the unrelenting heat of Italian summers. We have reimagined it in 2 different ways, but first, we present you with a classical affogato recipe.

 

Traditional Affogato

Consisting of two ingredients, the affogato is traditionally served with a vanilla (or plain) gelato, then drenched in espresso, (affogato means drowned in Italian). It’s quite simple, scoop one (or two) dollops of gelato (or ice cream) into a dish. Then place the dish directly under the spout of your espresso machine and watch the ice cream start to melt in the face of 200-degree espresso.

Alternatively, if you enjoy your gelato (or creamy substitute) less melty, capture the espresso in a cool demitasse before pouring,.  Try it both ways, that way you get to eat two.

 

For those of you, like most of us, without the latest dual boiler PID controlled espresso machine (or some lower tech facsimile) sitting on your counter, don’t worry, we have a solution.

 

 

Cold Press Float & Chilled Affogato, the affogato reimagined

 

These two recipes are Tiny Footprint Coffee’s modern and more accessible take on the traditional Italian dessert. The differences between the two desserts are subtle, but significant. Think cappuccino versus latte.

Tiny Footprint Coffees Twist - The Cold Press Float

Tiny Footprint Coffees Twist – The Cold Press Float

The Float is similar to the classic Root Beer float recipe you loved as a kid and hopefully still enjoy from time to time. The Cold Press Float Consists of 2-3 scoops of ice cream added to 8-12oz of cold brewed Cold Press coffee. If this seems like a lot of Cold Press, just cut it with some water or cream so you can get to sleep tonight. We’ve used Nitro Cold Press in these pictures since, lets face it, we’re addicted, but traditional Cold Press works just as well.

A Traditional Affogato

A Traditional Affogato

 

 

The Chilled Affogato

 

Simply, the Chilled Affogato is a traditional Affogato made with Cold Press instead of Espresso. The ratio is the same,  1-2oz of Cold Press followed by 1-2 scoops of your favorite ice cream (or gelato).

 

 

Happy Dessert-ing!