Since its opening earlier this year, Beautiful Day Cafe at Central and Grove has made a name for itself serving wholesome fare with an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients.
The locavore movement has been embraced by a growing number of restaurants in town, but Beautiful Day, which Echo Landscapes owner Charolett Knapic opened in May, is taking it to the next level. In the spring, Knapic will turn the vacant lot next to the restaurant into a large garden that will supply it with fruits and vegetables. That’s about as local as you can get.
The interior is cozy and eclectic. It appears most of the furnishings, plates, cups and utensils are a hodgepodge of garage sale deals, which add to the ambience. Art and photography from local artists adorn the walls, and there is seating for about 50 people.
The cafe offers a succinct menu of healthier breakfasts and lunches that include vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free selections. There is an attempt to source as many of the ingredients as possible locally, but given the climate of Kansas, that is not always the case. The breakfast choices include buckwheat pancakes, biscuits and gravy, and a breakfast burrito. For lunch, there are salads, sandwiches, and soups of the day. Sides of sauerkraut, kimchi, guacamole and hummus were available on our visit as well. There are also a few desserts offered on a rotating basis.
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On our visit, we opted for the breakfast burrito with sausage, the Ruby Sue panini, and a bowl of the soup of the day, which was tomato basil. The large burrito was filled with eggs, black beans, sauteed onions, peppers, kale, mushrooms and sausage and was topped with a generous amount of red chili sauce. The vegetable-heavy burrito was well-seasoned and much lighter than most egg-and-cheese dominated versions you find around town. The best part of the burrito was the delicious homemade chili sauce that had just enough spice to complement the vegetables without overpowering them.
The vegan tomato basil soup was another well-made dish that left us not missing the absent dairy product. The charred tomatoes added a deep smoky flavor to the light and pleasing soup.
The Ruby Sue panini came with turkey, house-made sauerkraut, cheese and mayo. The tangy sauerkraut helped to set it apart from other turkey sandwiches, but it needed more turkey and sauerkraut.
Our service was friendly and fast despite an early lunchtime rush.
Review: Beautiful Day Cafe
Where: 2516 E. Central, 316-977-9333
Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays
Prices range: $3 to $10