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Acadia Cafe

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BA SCORE
91
outstanding

34 Reviews
PLACE INFO

Type: Bar, Eatery

329 Cedar Ave S
Minneapolis, Minnesota, 55454-1030
United States

(612) 874-8702 | map
acadiacafe.com

Notes:
No notes at this time.

Added by feloniousmonk

PLACE STATS
Score:
91
Reviews:
34
Ratings:
46
Avg:
4.08
pDev:
8.33%
 
 
Taps:
29
Bottles/Cans:
42
Cask:
Y
Beer-to-Go:
N
View: Place Reviews | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 34 | Ratings: 46
Photo of spoots
3.85/5  rDev -5.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

[Update--Acadia has really cleaned up its act, so I am revising my rating. During my last visit the staff couldn't have been more pleasant, and the dust has been dusted--good job!]

Acadia is a good place to grab a beer and a bite (and a coffee afterward). There's a pleasant, relaxed atmosphere here, and, as a working-class guy, I feel very comfortable among the working-class crowd that hangs out here.

The design of the place is logical, and the semi-rummage sale furniture works OK for the space. I'd guess this cafe seats about 40, but when it's busy--as it was on both occasions when I stopped in--it feels a pretty cramped. However, the high ceiling absorbs noise and it is one of the quietest busy spaces I've seen. Thank goodness for that. I didn't get a chance to enjoy a musical performance, but there is a separate room for it and it looks pretty similar to what Bryant Lake Bowl has going on for performance space.

The service was great on my first visit, but disappointing during the follow up. Maybe it was a result of the crowd, but I got the impression the folks behind the counter (there is no table service) on my most recent visit had had a long day. I didn't get a dose of attitude as much as ambivilence--sort of a "...next...yeah, whaddya want...next..." sort of vibe. I almost felt bad for troubling them with my order.

On both occasions I ordered a Surly beer and some food. The on-tap selection is good--and frankly, surprising--but for every Delirium Tremens there is a Leinie's Honey Weiss taking up valuable real estate. I suppose that's the nature of the beast; there are still a lot of mainstream beer drinkers out there, and this place has to meet them halfway in order to survice. Of course, if you don't find something on tap to your liking, the bottled selection is excellent--Kozlak, Acadia, Rogue, Bells, Victory, and Grain Belt to name a few. Considering that this is essentially a coffee shop with food, it's a hell of a selection. Well done, folks!

The food was good, but my cheese plate on visit 1 was pretty skimpy--maybe they were running low on the Irish cheddar. On the other hand, the veggie burger I ordered on visit 2 was exceptional--flavorful, with guacamole, cheese, and red onions, and served with a generous side of (Frontera?) tortilla chips and a terrific salsa. A real deal for $6.40.

I like this place, and I'll be back to explore their beer selection.

[Just a side note--the folks at Acadia need to take a hard look at how clean the place is. Everything was dusty (the display wine bottles were especially noticable), there was trash on the floor, and their water urn was so dirty it was downright gross. I know it's hard for restauranteurs to stay on top of this stuff, but everybody in my group noticed that the place looks like it needs a thorough cleaning. Points off for that, but I'll bump the score back up if they've done some clean-up work next time through.]

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.31/5  rDev +5.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75

Upon walking into the Acadia Cafe the first thing that went through my mind was, damn this place is small. There is a small counter where you order, and some tables and booths on the wall opposite the counter. After a little exploring I found the stage area where everyone in the place had flocked to watch the show going on. The beer selection is great; twenty-four taps with a wide variety of styles, a nice mix of import, craft, and local, and no crap. Overall, this is more of a Tuesday night or weekend afternoon bar, but whatever the time the beer is still great.

 569 characters

Photo of edbeered
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 2 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

I'm not sure what to think about the Acadia Cafe. It is an interesting hybrid-a coffee shop with 24 beers on tap and an impressive bottle selection-but is it a bar? No, because it doesn't have one. There is a collection of formica tables on an unfinished hardwood floor, a brick wall, unfinished ceiling rafters, with a spinning fan. Like most coffee shops, there is a counter at which you place your order. Once you have ordered(and paid for your meal/beer), you then sit at one of the tables and wait for your order. When you are finished, you bus the table yourself.

The food is very good and the desserts are fantastic. The closest thing to a macro are a couple taps of Leinenkugels, otherwise there is an impressive collection of imported beers and micros, including Fullers ESB, Delerium Tremens, and Lake Superior Mesabi Red.

That said, this is not a bar(despite what the counter guy said about striving for a "pub" atmosphere). There is no common space(i.e.bar)where one can interact with other customers and staff. If all you are interested in is a beer with a few friends, or a quiet night out by yourself, this place serves admirably. If you are looking for interesting conversations with the person on the next barstool, then go somewhere that has one.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Sometimes I can be the solitary sort with little use of the hurly burly social whirl found at most noisome taverns. Sometimes all I ask is a little peace and quiet, a respite from the groan of the drunken masses or the risk of getting bumped into by some bumbler, tossing his pitcher of PBR all over my antique tome. Yeah, I'm that rare specimen that wants to go to a mellow parlor and read a book, with a fine ale in hand. And within walking distance, too, would be helpful, for many and various reasons.

The Acadia opened up in 1998 and was 6 blocks away from me then, and is the same now, from the opposite direction, now that I've moved. A nice little coffee shop with good food, nothing too fancy, just appetizers, salads, sandwiches, etcetera, nothing beyond what a simple kitchen can handle. And they started out with an impressive selection of beers and wines, Three Floyds, and Unibroue and others, though I rarely found myself there in the drinking hours, and as the years wore on, their sign went from "choice beers, classy wines" to "cold beers, classy wines", sometime due to the lack of choice, as distribution suffered, and I didn't weep too loudly, as I merely visited for the coffee and sandwiches for lunch...until an odd thing occurred, only a few months ago.

First they had one draft line, offering Bell's Oberon Ale, and then, next thing I know, I hear they have 24...24??? That's a rare number around here, but for a coffee shop? (There's no bar seating, you take your drink to your table, or chair.) Ah, I forgot something...some years ago, the Acadia added a theater, for performances of music, drama, comedy, every type of performance, etcetera...me, I had no idea how much use they had been making of it...every single night, just about, folk, rock, jazz,and everything, right here at this odd little downtown corner, and if the clientele for the music is hip enough to dig it, the beer selection is there for them, too. Very well considered, mostly craft-beer driven, Summit Oatmeal Stout, Lake Superior, Sierra Nevada Celebration, Bell's Two-Hearted Ale, and good imports, Fuller's ESB, Young's Double Chocolate Stout, Beamish, Paulaner, and top-notch Belgians, Maredsous, Delirium Tremens,... oh, and I almost forgot Aventinus! Aventinus! On-tap, at the corner of Franklin and Nicollet, of all the places in the world,...and the proper glassware, as well, for those brews that merit it.
And not a bit of macro-crap, though they get close to it, with Leinenkugel's Amber Light, but they're trying to hit all tastes here, and do it well.
I hope enough downtown workers get wind of the fact that such a sweet selection sits right on the bus line, or that the art school crowd knows that the best beer around is in their backyard, or that the young yuppies who will soon file into the new condos around will get hip to this line-up of exceptional beers.
The bottle selection has gotten smaller, as it should, since the draft line-up covers all bases (really, why Blue Moon, when they have Wittekerke?) ...service is always good, though food is rather limited, though their commitment to selection in such an unlikely locale is so commendable...did I mention Aventinus yet?

Anyhow, it's freezing cold, with snow drifts about every avenue, yet I merely have 6 or 7 blocks to travel to find a glass of an Abbey Dubbel to match my Rabelais, and relax, with only that crazy old, bald guy who talks to himself, to contend with...that's just as close to heaven as I can hope for!

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Acadia Cafe in Minneapolis, MN
4.08 out of 5 based on 46 ratings.
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