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Eating My Way Through University City: Kayak’s Coffee

University City Patch's resident foodie Natalie McLaury shares the scoop on her latest dining experience at Kayak's Coffee.

While Kayak's Coffee, at the corner of Skinker and Forest Park Parkway is not in University City, it's still a go-to for many residents and a major hot-spot for Washington University students.

Step inside Kayak’s Coffee (270 N. Skinker) and you might think you’ve stepped inside a lodge in the mountains of Colorado. With homey decorating and a dark wood interior, you almost forget that you’re inside a building located on a crowded corner.

Having stopped in several times early in the day for breakfast, my husband Ryan and I were eager to try out their lunch and dinner menu. Kayak’s offers quite a variety, including many dishes with ingredients that aren’t found at your typical locale. I was intrigued by a number of their sandwiches, but in the end we ordered the Cyprus salad and the Greek pizza. The Cyprus salad was ordered primarily because I was impressed by a few of its toppings, namely the grilled Halloumi cheese and dried figs. Like I said, more exotic ingredients than I expected, and likely the reason for the $12 price tag. Though I find that price a little steep for this type of place, the large size and unique combination justified the price.

The Greek pizza was similarly impressive. Using hummus instead of sauce, we liked the way it melted into the crust. With the exception of the feta, the toppings were added in abundance and every bite featured a salty combination of olives, peppers, capers, and artichokes. This is one dish I would certainly return for, and already have plans to attempt at home! Nearly a foot in diameter, this pizza could easily serve two, especially if you start with a salad or have plans to finish with dessert (they have make-your-own s’mores and chocolate pizza on the dessert menu, two things I’m definitely saving room for next time!).

If you live within walking or biking distance, I recommend arriving without a car. Parking is at a premium in the area and police are known to give tickets in the metered back lot for overstaying your welcome. Parking issues aside, Kayak’s is worth a visit! Now serving Kaldi’s Coffee (previously they served Alterra coffee and more recently switched to local Kaldi’s), Kayak's is a great place to stop in for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. They’re open daily 6:30 am to 10:00 pm (kitchen closes at 9) and their breakfast menu is just as robust as the lunch and dinner menu (I recommend the French toast or cowboy omelette sandwich!)

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