The Oracle

Are you tired of studying in Starbucks

For the first in a series of reviews on off-campus study spots, we look at the Hamline classic, Ginkgo Coffeehouse.

Kristina Remus, reporter

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Since 1993, Ginkgo Coffeehouse on Snelling Avenue has served the community with a cozy atmosphere and tasty menu at reasonable prices. Whether you plan on burying your nose in homework or sipping on an Americano as you visit with a friend, the space welcomes you with charming wood floors and natural lighting. Just outside, the bustling Snelling Avenue brings excitement and life to the windows of the coffeeshop while keeping the noise level to a minimum.

The atmosphere of Ginkgos Coffeehouse is enough to get customers in the doors alone. Intricate metal tiles decorate the ceiling while brightly colored walls compliment the space perfectly. A wide variety of furniture gives the cafe a casual feel, with everything from a big velvet couch to dainty wooden chairs. The aroma of fresh baked goods and coffee beans fills the spacious room while people come and go. A stage used for Friday live music nights remains a highlight of the space, capturing the vibrant local music scene of the St. Paul community. Musicians of all ages and levels of expertise are welcome to perform and showcase their passion. Mismatched dishware makes you feel right at home, no matter what you decide to drink.

Along with a comfortable environment, Ginkgos offers a menu chock-full of delicious fares. The spread ranges from traditional favorites like mac and cheese, as well as Vegetarian, Vegan and healthier options like veggie lasagna. If you have a sweet tooth, baked goods made daily are displayed near the register to entice you. Although our temperatures are dropping rapidly as we approach winter, this quirky coffee house also serves ice cream! All of these options are served at an affordable price that won’t break the bank.

You can enjoy virtually any classic coffeehouse beverage, from lattes to daily brews, in any size for under $5. If you’re a frequent coffeehouse patron in the twin cities, then you know a price this cheap can be hard to come by.

Earl Schwartz, a longtime Professor of Religion at Hamline University, has been meeting his students at Ginkgos Coffeehouse for years. Located just down the street in walking distance from the University, Ginkgos is a great hangout spot for college students and Hamline community members alike.

“I appreciate its straightforward homeyness, and the management’s longstanding commitment to bringing music, art, a little wackiness and a welcoming shared space to the neighborhood. I like meeting in shared spaces.” Professor Schwartz said.

Although it is in the heart of the fast paced midway, this quaint cafe has the perfect amount of white noise with faint conversations, the hum of espresso machines and the creaky wood floor. The atmosphere is perfect for concentrating, whether you are writing a research paper or reading the latest edition of the Oracle. The menu offers reasonably priced drinks and tasty home-cooked fare, while still remaining inclusive to dietary needs. Ginkgos creates a shared space that anyone can enjoy for artistic expression, and a sense of community togetherness in the Hamline-Midway neighborhood.

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Are you tired of studying in Starbucks