The Freshest Eats on Union Street in Traverse City

There’s something of a culinary block-party happening on Union Street. Three new bakery-cafés have opened within the last 12 months along the Old Town avenue, and MyNorth’s Evan Perry devised a few questions to get the details about the new guys in town: Pleasanton Café, the Blue Heron, and Elixir.

Elixir

  • With a list of smoothies and juice blends that’ll make your whole body smile, Elixir—the newest addition on Union—serves up breakfast and lunch for the health-conscious consumer.

When did you open?

Jena from Elixir: March 7th, 2014.

What niche do you fill (or seek to fill) in the TC food scene?

Everything served at Elixir is good for your body. We offer no gluten, no artificial sweeteners/ colors/ additives, no tap water, no white sugar and our dairy and meat products are clean. We find clean produce and/or organic. Anyone can come in here and guaranteed not be poisoned with chemicals..not even a little.  After all, it’s about making food your medicine!

What’s the best part about being on Union Street?

Being a part of the community.  We are located more or less in a neighborhood, so it’s nice to see familiar faces everyday.

What do people keep coming back for?

Our exceptional food and service. The Foxy Detox juice is very popular, and the coffee from Stumptown is a huge hit.  The Braised Grass-Fed Beef has a little bit of fan-club/cult following, too.

If your cafe were an item on your menu, what would it be and why? 

The Bowl of Goodness Chicken Soup: it tastes amazing, it’s good for you, and it makes you feel good—you can feel it deep in you!

Union Street in Traverse CityBlue Heron

  • After opening their first Blue Heron café in Cadillac, Brian and Julie Williams brought their recipe for success to Traverse City.  Soups, sandwiches and more to sit down and enjoy.

When did you open?

Julie Williams: We opened around Labor Day in 2013

What niche do you fill (or seek to fill) in the TC food scene?

We provide healthful, wholesome breakfast and lunch fare which features our homemade sourdough breads, and we have a bakery case filled with homemade donuts, cookies, muffins and gluten-free selections.

What’s the best part about being on Union Street?

It’s easy for locals to visit our restaurant. This is a walkable community for both downtown employees and residents alike.

What do people keep coming back for?

Repeat business has been great! It is hard to categorize what specifically they are coming back into our establishment for as we offer a wide variety of items and they are selling great.

If your cafe were an item on your menu, what would it be and why?

Maybe the Michigan ham and cheese sandwich: It is served on our homemade sourdough bread and we use a Michigan ham, mustard and jelly from local providers and we create an ordinary type of sandwich with a creative twist/flair that keeps you coming back for more.

Pleasanton Café

  • The not-so-evil twin to the brick-oven Pleasanton Bakery in the Grand Traverse Commons.  Pastries, sandwiches, coffee and more.

When did you open?

Vanessa from Pleasanton Café: We opened 6 weeks ago.

What do people keep coming back for?

People keep coming back for our fantastic coffee from MadCap, and for our amazing array of pastries and breads.

What niche do you fill (or seek to fill) in the TC food scene?

We seek to provide ready made, to-go sandwiches so you can continue shopping or go back to work without having to wait for your meal. Off to the beach? Our sandwiches are perfect for that, too!

What’s the best part about being on Union Street?

Meeting all of the people who live and work downtown.

 

If your cafe were an item on your menu, what would it be and why?

It would have to be one of our sandwiches: they’re ready to go, quick, and affordable—and delicious!

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