Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Downtown Monroe Holiday Shopping Guide

If you are wondering about where to shop in Monroe this year, here are some ideas for the Downtown area. There are so many great businesses that I will be breaking this up into a series of posts.

If a chocolate lover is on your list, stop in at Chocolate Temptation on the east side of the Square, but do it early! They sell out every year as the end of December nears, so place your order as soon as possible. If you are too late for the chocolates and truffles, consider the array of coffee beans and syrups for the home coffee enthusiast. Gift certificates are also available.

Speaking of gift cards, consider one for any of the eating establishments in the Downtown area! On the west side of the Square, you will find Chopsticks, featuring Chinese American cuisine. Historic Baumgartners Bar and Grill is also on the west side, and their front cheese store is always a hit. You can pick up some classic candies there for stuffing the stockings too.

Visit the south side of the Square for Garden Deli. The sandwiches, soups and baked potatoes are a great lunch or light dinner. They will deliver to the Downtown area, a bonus for busy professionals on your list. Walk a little father south for Corner Cafe, which is open early for breakfast and lunch. A little off the south of the Square is also where you will find Suisse Haus with their great burgers and popular pizza or Bullet's & Bonnie's, a favorite combination of casual or elegant dining depending on your recipient's preference. Turner Hall is also in that area. Treat someone to a fantastic dinner in their Rathskeller or a casual pizza eaten while playing a game in the bowling alley side of things.

Stop on the east side for Fox's Feathercreek Bakery. Who would not love to pick up a loaf of their fresh bread, their pies or fabulous cakes? Cafe Claudeen is also on the east side, and your lucky recipient can enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner there or stop in anytime for a coffee and pastry. I am enjoying one of their cherry muffins as I type this, actually. I highly recommend them! They also feature a selection of teas that you can wrap up with the gift certificate.

New to Downtown is Barrett's. Located just one block east of the Square, Barrett's features American cuisine enjoyed in a refined, relaxed environment. Be sure to stop in and give them a try if you have not already done so!

So many wonderful dining options exist in our Downtown area. Surely the people on your gift lift would enjoy the gift of enjoying any or all of them.

Please consider shopping our locally owned, independent businesses for your holiday shopping this year. Each dollar spent at a locally owned business recirculates in the community approximately six times more than each dollar spent at a non-locally owned companies. The muffin I buy at the cafe allows the cafe owner to purchase something at the dress shop next door, allowing the dress shop owner to shop at the pharmacy and so on.

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