An enterprising husband-and-wife duo is launching a new cafe concept that will allow customers to enjoy a cup of espresso in a tropical, plant-filled retreat — without having to leave Rochester.
Michelle and Shawn Fagan plan to open Cafe Aqui in May in an enlarged greenhouse at Sargent’s Garden Center, 1811 2nd Street SW.
“There are so many drive-through cafes in Rochester and we wanted to create the opposite,” Shawn said. “There is no urgency here. We want people to sit down, walk around, relax, let their shoulders drop.
The drinks menu will include ‘top notch espresso drinks’, such as cortados, lattes, cappuccinos, americanos, mochas and Shawn’s personal favorite, a cortadito, which they experienced on a trip in Cuba.
On the food side, there will be several tasty options, including empanadas served with tangy chimichurri and other sauces. Thanks to their relationships with local football clubs over the years, a number of South American flavors will also find their way onto the menu.
“One year we had a football coach from Brazil who was coaching with our local youth club, MN Rush (RYSA at the time),” Shawn said. “He and his family have become very dear friends of our family and during his stay with us he taught us how to make Pão de queijo, a common and favorite Brazilian snack, which we too now love and which we will include in our menu.”
Oh, and the last scoop: there will also be ice cream made in Wisconsin.
IN SEARCH OF CLUES
More than a year after announcing plans to add a physical presence in Rochester, Google’s office on the second floor of the Conley-Maass-Downs building remains mostly quiet, but for how much longer?
This issue was raised this week in a report of the Post-Bulletin, “No results found? An overview of Google’s Rochester office. He noted that although Google requires its Bay Area employees to return to a hybrid model on April 4the status of his Rochester office is somewhat mysterious.
Reached on Wednesday, a Google spokesperson confirmed that the company would reopen with a staggered approach and that Rochester, like many of its other offices, would remain open to workers on a voluntary basis.
The spokesperson, however, pushed back on the idea that it had shifted gears in its plans for the Rochester office – saying the company continues to be “fully committed” to the original vision for the space.
“We are full steam ahead. We’re really excited to have people in the office, both with lots of people based locally, but also bringing in experts from around the world [to work with Mayo Clinic]”said the spokesperson.
Google doesn’t reveal how many people are currently showing up at the Rochester office, and hasn’t provided an estimate of the number of employees it plans to hire for the site, its first in Minnesota.
(In its initial announcement in February 2021, a company representative said it planned to start with at least “a handful of Googlers” working in the space, with plans to add more staff over time. .)
The office occupied by Google is part of Coworking Collider, although he remains the sole tenant of the space. All other members (including this writer) have moved to the second floor of the BioBusiness Center.
Meanwhile, as the future of office space remains in limbo, Google continues to collaborate with Mayo on a 10-year data partnership to improve healthcare delivery through cloud computing, data analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence.
CONNECT TO TV
Finally, some local businesses will be honored on Sunday.
This weekend, Rochester will be the featured community of “The Main Streets of John McGivern” TV show. Some of the companies featured will include ThaiPop, Pasquale’s Pizzeria and Café Steam.
The episode is scheduled to air locally Sunday, March 27 at 9:30 a.m. on FOX 47 in Rochester and other Midwest stations.
Sean Baker is a Rochester journalist and the founder of Med City Beat.