Pangea Cafe

When it comes to breakfast, I am willing to go just about anywhere.  Pangea Cafe, just off 1st street in downtown Waconia southwest of the metro, more than fits the bill. Waconia is home to the likes of Lola’s on the Lake, Waconia Brewing and Frost & Steam Coffee so when I heard several people raving about it being the best place in town, I knew I had to make the trip. I always gravitate towards the eggs Benedict and since breakfast is Pangea’s go-to; omelettes, skillets, waffles, and pancakes – you name it, they have it. C’mon, you can’t go wrong with an all-day breakfast. They also have delicious salads, sandwiches and homemade soups.  Everything is scratch made using locally-sourced ingredients, serving up huge portions and a warm and friendly atmosphere. The staff is pretty great, too. If you are in the area, stop in for a Fair Trade coffee (or a mimosa or a bloody Mary) and some french toast.

Carlson’s Llovable Llamas


Since I’m all about traditions, I have to tell you about my annual trek to visit the Llamas at Carlson’s Llovable Llamas! With +60 llamas in residence, CLL works with 4-H clubs to educate as well as do events like the State Fair and local festivals. They even have an adopt-a-llama program! They offer a summer camp and birthday parties where you can take the super mellow, very sweet, pretty-much-like-big-dogs-but-they-are-llamas for walks and give them big neck hugs. The Waconia hills were alive with the sound of children laughing and llama’s humming (they do that!). CLL also sells the llama wool as yarn, roving or bats and can be found on the farm or for sale in town at Frost and Steam, one of my favorite coffee shops in the southwest metro. P.S. I’m pretty sure I’ve never touched a llama before and my limited exposure to them came from a Disney movie.

Frost and Steam

One of my favorite coffee shops in the southwest metro, Frost and Steam, is up next on the #mnbucketlist. As we are coming up on warm weather, it only makes sense to tell you about my not-so-secret hidden-gem for sweet treats. Dani and I stopped in for coffee on our way through town and instantly fell in love. From the sweet baristas who were ridiculously helpful, to the smell of Belgian waffles and popovers, to the case filled to the brim with in-house made baked goods – it’s not a surprise that it would be a hit with me.  They also have a variety of ice cream flavors and bistro-like sustenance. Heavily community focused, Frost also takes part in all the local festivities like Waconia’s Nickle Dickle Day. Fun fact; you can get Llama wool from Carlson’s Llovable Llamas (who I wrote about this past summer) there!

Egg-Cetera Cafe

Heading over to Waconia for todays #mnbucketlist stop. With no website, Facebook or any other connection to the digital world, Egg-Cetera is as close to small town friendly meets no frills as it gets. More hidden than you would expect, they aren’t meant to impress. Local faces, homemade but inexpensive menu, simple is the expectation. Egg-Cetera is a bit of a greasy spoon as it is older and more rundown but do offer a great middle-of-nowhere Saturday morning breakfast. My tip? Its a big open room so try not to sit by the door.

Carlson’s Llovable Llamas

Carlson's Llovable LlamasThis past weekend, my friend Ashley, from Carlson’s Llovable Llamas invited me to their open house.  Dani and I trekked over to Waconia to hang out with the Llama’s and get a firsthand look at what Carlson’s is all about. With +60 llamas in residence, CLL works with 4-H clubs to educate as well as do events like the State Fair and local festivals. They even have an adopt-a-llama program! They offer a summer camp and birthday parties where you can take the super mellow, very sweet, pretty-much-like-big-dogs-but-they-are-llamas for walks and give them big neck hugs. The Waconia hills were alive with the sound of children laughing and llama’s humming (they do that!). CLL also sells the llama wool as yarn, roving or bats and can be found on the farm or for sale in town at Frost and Steam, one of my favorite coffee shops in the southwest metro. P.S. I’m pretty sure I’ve never touched a llama before and my limited exposure to them came from a Disney movie.

Taste of Minnesota

Terra

TerraIf you have never heard of Terra in Waconia, that wouldn’t be surprising. {currently closed} Terra has a deceiving house-like exterior and inside you’ll find a farm to table, tea-room sized #restaurant. I initially decided to go after seeing their beautiful website boasting local sources. Reading the reviews, I had really high expectations. Sadly, Terra didn’t live up to its billing for me. The atmosphere is sort of charming and the follow through fell short. Way overpriced and pieces of it didn’t fit together (the waitstaff was in jeans and tennis shoes, which is great if it were cheaper). Also, it was so uncomfortably quiet, almost unnerving. But, hey, when they re-open, give it a try and see if your experience is different.

Taste of Minnesota

Taste of MinnesotaSpending this scorching hot day at the Taste of Minnesota festival in Waconia, Minnesota. This year, it’s at the Carver County Fair Grounds, complete with a petting zoo, the iconic titanic slide, multiple music stages and state fair food staples. It’s going on through tomorrow, so stop by. smile emoticon July 4th 2014 weekend.