The heart of Lincoln’s restaurant scene is in the Haymarket District and the blocks around the brand-new arena nearby. But for one of Lincoln’s top coffee shops (actually, the best in many locals’ opinions), head a couple of blocks south of downtown to Cultiva, in a single-story storefront near the state capitol. The shop keeps things spare, as a good coffee shop usually does, with a picnic table among the regular tables, concrete floors and vinyl records playing on a stereo that’s probably turned up a notch or two too loud for the Starbucks/Caribou crowd.
Cultiva roasts its excellent coffees on-site and serves a menu featuring johnnycakes (cornmeal pancakes), sweet and savory crepes, soups and sandwiches. Be sure to check out the Barcelona iced toddy topped with whipped cream and sea salt. It leaves the tastiest whipped cream moustache you’ll ever have.