Roasted Cafe on Second Street is still a secret to some, and now they have something new to lure you to try it: a dinner menu.
The space itself is a bit of a dive, with desks as tables and a ceiling you can nearly touch, but the food is fresh and the service is genuine. You should have their signature spicy feta spread in some form every time you come — in a jalapeño wrap, with their homemade hummus or just on its own with cucumbers and pita bread.
After our starters, we shared several entrees. Our favorite was the pastrami sandwich with a side for $9. Shredded 100 percent beef pastrami is topped with grilled onions, mustard, pickles, and mayonnaise on a French roll and is pure perfection. Our second favorite was the lamb kebab for $13, flavored with Mediterranean spices and served on a bed of rice with seasonal veggies. The lamb burger, also $13, was tasty but much too small for the price. The menu does state that it is only five ounces, but it was still overwhelmed by its Kaiser bun.
We were disappointed in our chicken dishes. The Mean Machine sandwich for $10 combines a chicken breast with smoked ham, bacon, romaine, red onion and pesto aioli, but the chicken was dry and without its own flavor. The rosemary honey mustard chicken had a lovely taste, but the chicken itself was tough and chewy. The same was true for the Greek Heat, with chicken and the spicy feta spread on a pita. The chicken shawarma for $8 was oddly chopped. Sides include grilled seasonal vegetables, fries, saffron rice and some interesting balsamic-dressed tomatoes.
Stick with the feta spread, lamb and that rocking pastrami and you'll be pleased with everything you try. Roasted is a great hangout, and Second Street is becoming a happening place.
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Roasted Cafe and Lounge
Address: 442 Second St.
Hours: Monday-Tuesday, 7 a.m.-6 p.m.; Wednesday-Saturday, 7 a.m.-9:30 p.m.
Payment: Cash, credit
Kids menu: No
Noise level: Low
Wheelchair accessible: Yes
Health rating: 96
Price range: $8-$13