I was tired of standing in line at Starbucks when a friend suggested we head over to the Espresso Bar at Nordstrom for our coffee. That was 4 years ago at Perimeter Mall, and my favorite coffee spot is still the same. Now that Nordstrom, one of my favorite shopping destinations has landed at Phipps I can indulge my craving for a nonfat latte without the drive. I love the “E bar.” It’s a great little place for a quick break during a day of shopping, or a super rendezvous spot. Easy parking at Phipps makes meeting a friend easy. Instead of a trying to find a place to perch in a packed tiny store, you can grab your coffee and enjoy a delicious quiet moment alone or a real conversation on a cushy sofa with your friend. Not only will the Ebar handle your hankering for an Americano, since it is part of the Nordstrom family of restaurants, it has a clean, healthy approach to the menu items, most of which are delivered from the bistro upstairs. Try a salad with the dark cherry balsamic vinaigrette or one of my favorite lunches: the veggies with hummus. Both are great light choices that are better for you and lower in price than most options in the mall. Enough about the light options. There are times in life when an indulgence is required – for instance when you have to recover after your breathtaking bill for shoes at Jeffrey. The Ebar comes to the rescue here, too. The Mexican Mocha (semi-dark chocolate with cinnamon) is a treat that immediately springs to mind. The largest size is called the Enormo. Need I say more? Similar to most of my passions, my love for coffee has eventually led to the kitchen. Like me, maybe you’ve discovered that coffee can be used for cooking as well as drinking. I always add a tablespoon or two of instant espresso to my brownies and deep dark chocolate cake. The intensity and smokiness enhances the richness and flavor of the luxurious chocolate. If you haven’t experimented with coffee in a savory way, here’s a recipe that will make your grilled chicken the envy of the neighborhood! Chipotle-Coffee Rubbed Chicken 1 Tsp Ground Cumin 1 Tsp Turmeric 2 Tsp Instant Coffee1 Tsp Chipotle Chile Powder 2 TB Smoked Paprika3 TB Dark Brown Sugar1 Tsp Sea Salt ½ Tsp Freshly Cracked Black Pepper12 Large Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs2 TB of Canola Oil 1 Large Red Onion Cut in HalfLemon WedgesStir the first 8 ingredients together to create the rub. Place the thighs in a plastic bag or bowl and massage the mixture into the meat. Set aside while you preheat the grill. Once the grill is hot, pour the oil into a bowl, and using a fork to stab the onion, dip it into the bowl and wipe the grill well with the oiled onion. Remove the chicken from the bag and place on the oiled grill. Turn once and grill until desired doneness. Serve with the lemon wedges.

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