*Check out the alternative weekly paper a few days before arriving - search for the best restaurants, coffee houses, wine stores, galleries and museums (if they don't have such a paper, reconsider the trip).
Cafe Soleil - the casual lunch spot of the famed L'Etoile Restaurant that's been serving up "seasonal menus...inspired by the artisans and small sustainable farms of the Midwest and... rendered with a French technique" since 1976. My $20 lunch was more than memorable: a cup of roasted cauliflower soup with bits of chorizo sprinkled on top with a drizzle of garlic olive oil and the market salad: local greens, pear, fennel, red onion, blue paradise cheese, pecans and creamy lemon-garlic vinaigrette, with slices of grilled chicken on the side. Oh, and the above-mentioned macchiato!
25 N Pinckney St, (608) 251-0500, http://www.letoile-restaurant.com/
418 State Street, (608) 268-0477, http://www.fairtradecoffeehouse.com/