“With monthly SCCA meetings we have been able to address many concerns and interests of the local businesses in a timely way.”
SCCA Member: Suzanne Weinstein, Coastal Seafoods

SCCA Businesses Bring Home Four Twin Cities’ “Best Of” Awards

For the past 14 years, City Pages has released its yearly “Best Of” awards, which gives tribute to all of our favorite places, people and events in the Twin Cities. This year, City Pages handed out 240 awards in categories that ranged from Best Chinese Restaurant and Best Bike Shop to Best Place for a First Date and unfortunately (or fortunately depending on your situation) Best Break-Up Spot.

This year, four SCCA businesses had the distinction of winning a “Best Of” award. The Birchwood Café won Best Farm-to-Table Restaurant. Zipp’s Liquors won Best Liquor Store. The Seward Co-op won Best Natural Foods Grocery, and the Seward Café won Best Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurant.

Best Farm-to-Table Restaurant – 2012

Birchwood Café

3311 E 25th St
(612) 722-4474

Back in 1995, the Birchwood Café transformed itself from a neighborhood grocery store into one of the area’s favorite restaurants while making it a priority to preserve the ideals of fresh food and community. This is the fourth time the Birchwood Café has won a City Pages’ “Best Of” award, and the people at City Pages had nothing shy to say about the accomplishments of the restaurant.

The Birchwood Café “serves delicious food that will please the most ethical of eaters. Whether looking for a vegan, gluten-free, or omnivorous meal, expect to find delicious selections inside this community rallying point. Their commitment to making this world a tastier, better place is an inspirational example of how a business can be both virtuous and delicious.”

Best Liquor Store – 2012

Zipp’s Liquors

2618 East Franklin Avenue
(612) 333-8686

Zipp’s Liquors, a family owned and operated store, has been part of the Seward community for well over 50 years. With a well-trained staff and wide-ranging selection, the store prides itself on meeting every customer’s need. This has been the second time in the past eight years that Zipp’s has had the distinction of being named the Twin Cities’ best liquor store.

The people at City Pages state that Zipp’s is a place where “you can find a healthy selection of craft beers, domestic and international wines, and all manner of hard liquor, all at prices that are more reasonable… What’s more, the staff can actually help you decide whether you should take that $10 pinot noir or the $15 cabernet that’s on sale — and they won’t make you feel stupid or get surly about it.”

Best Natural Foods Grocery – 2012

Seward Co-op Grocery and Deli

2823 East Franklin Avenue
(612) 338-2465

The Seward Co-op has been a staple of the Seward Community ever since it opened its doors in 1972. While the Co-op has expanded into one of Minnesota’s largest food cooperatives, they haven’t lost their community feel and commitment to serving the needs of its patrons. The Seward Co-op has had a stranglehold on the City Pages’ “Best Of’ award for Best Natural Foods Grocery. Since the Seward Co-op moved into their new store location at 29th and Franklin they have won the award in 2009, 2010 and 2012. Overall, this is their fourth “Best of” award.

According to the staff at City Pages, “the new green facilities have an open, farmer’s market feel, offering organic and earth-friendly options. The 8,000-member co-op stocks culturally specific foods that represent the neighborhood, such as the Ethiopian bread injera, and features diverse live music performances in the sunny dining area every Sunday. You can even learn a few new things at Seward, with educational resources such as film screenings and hands-on workshops, such as ‘Build a Personal Solar Station’ and ‘Sausage-Making Basics’.”


Best Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurant – 2012

Seward Café

2129 E Franklin Ave
(612) 332-1011

The Seward Café has been collectively owned in the Seward neighborhood since 1974. With principles that promote social and environmental responsibility, and owners that create a work environment that fosters respect, equality and mutual support, it is easy to see why the food at the Seward Café is so highly regarded. This is the first City Pages’ “Best Of’ award for the Seward Café!

“Unabashed in its embrace of the granola ethos, the Seward Café, nestled in a colorful, vine-covered building on Franklin Avenue, offers abundant vegetarian and vegan menu items lovingly crafted by the collectively owned restaurant’s employees/members. [They] make fresh, nutritious breakfasts and lunches that guests can enjoy on the spacious, inviting patio. In the colder months, hunker down indoors, where there’s enough plant life to rival the Como Conservatory. The house-made vegan walnut pesto is scrumptious in omelets and on sandwiches, and the myriad “earth” breakfasts are hearty satisfaction served with a side of virtue.”


The SCCA would like to send out congratulations to these four businesses. If at any time, your business wins an award, let us know about it. We love hearing about how well businesses have been doing in the Seward neighborhood­­­!

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