Restaurant: Main Street Cafe & Bakery | Twitter: @mainstcafeiowa | 2510 White Birch Dr STE 1 & 2, Ankeny, IA | 1/9/16


Grace: 4 Stars

Josh: 1 Billion Stars better than Panera

Why Main Street Cafe?

Main Street Cafe & Bakery, Ankeny, Iowa, Breakfast, Lunch, Coffee, Paninis

Josh: I live right across the street from Main Street Cafe. I moved into my apartment on May 2nd, 2015. Main Street Cafe opened up on May 11th, 2015. Even though it is in walking distance from my apartment, I have never visited. Until now…

Grace: Josh had to get an oil change, and we figured this would be a good place to hang out and have lunch while we waited. We kept saying we needed to go and never followed through, so this was the perfect time!

The Meal

Josh: After looking over the menu, I decided to get the “Main Street Chicken and Chipotle” I was so excited to try their version of this wonderful panini….dammit…

I’m sorry…I have to vent about something here that’s important to me…

Screw Panera. Screw them in the face for what they did. One September afternoon, Grace and I went to Panera for a nice little lunch. Instead, my fellow readers, this lunch did not have a happy ending. I went up to order my usual meal: A “You-Pick-Two” with a cup of Broccoli Cheddar Soup and half of a Chipotle Chicken Panini. Like usual, I was so excited to have my favorite meal there.

But screw Panera. You know what they did?

As part of a decision to get rid of artificial additives, they took their Chipotle Chicken Panini off the menu. Forever. For f—ing ever.

Screw Panera.

I wanted to leave right there and I didn’t know what to do. Grace suggested we stay and I get something else. They recommended this avocado turkey sandwich thing. I’m not even going to research what it was actually call because it doesn’t matter. It was crap. Right then and there I vowed to Grace that I wouldn’t go back to Panera and I haven’t been since. Panera got rid of their best sandwich on the menu and I won’t stand for this.

There is a petition on that you all need to sign. I did my duty and as an American….no…as a decent human being, you should sign it too. Please sign here. It will save a life. Only you can bring change to this unjust society.

Main Street Cafe & Bakery, Ankeny, Iowa, Breakfast, Lunch, Coffee, Paninis

How was my panini at Main Street?

It was good. I have always said quantity > quality and Main Street did both justice. Panera only gave you a cup of soup and half a panini/sandwich. Main Street gave me a cup of soup and a whole panini. HA!

Main Street Cafe & Bakery, Ankeny, Iowa, Breakfast, Lunch, Coffee, Paninis

The broccoli cheddar soup was tasty and had little chunks of broccoli in the soup (which I enjoy). As for the panini…it tasted extremely similar to Panera’s panini. The only difference was that Panera added more chipotle sauce to their product and I like it saucy. Other than that, it was a bomb panini and soup combo. I was sad that they don’t offer a baguette on the side but I guess you can’t win them all.

Main Street Cafe & Bakery, Ankeny, Iowa, Breakfast, Lunch, Coffee, Paninis

If you didn’t know…I love Frappés. After our meal, Grace and I got coffee beverages. I hate actual coffee and get Frappés at any coffee shop I go to. So I had to try theirs!

It was delicious! It was their Chocolate Frappe* (*It was like a double chocolate or something? Couldn’t find it on their online menu and I forgot the actual name). It was extremely good and easily one of the better ones I’ve ever had (Hello Smokey Row!)

Main Street Cafe & Bakery, Ankeny, Iowa, Breakfast, Lunch, Coffee, Paninis

The best part…it had a normal straw. If you’ve had a Frappé or smoothie from Panera, you know they use these stupid, giant, gimmicky straws. Eww. At least Main Street uses regular straws like a well-established business.

Grace: I’m glad we all made it through that. Josh has been burned. He’s still processing his feelings. Poor guy…

I personally think it’s awesome that Panera is getting rid of artificial ingredients/preservatives/whatever. Sometimes sacrifices have to be made for the greater good. However, due to the above RANT, I am without a Panera date, so if anyone wants to go ever, hit me up.

Now, let’s talk about what really matters.

Main Street Cafe & Bakery, Ankeny, Iowa, Breakfast, Lunch, Coffee, Paninis

This is a Pesto Chicken Panini, and it is delicious. Chicken, Pesto, tomato, mozzarella cheese, and greens. This is a dream sandwich, and it was delicious. It came with a side salad that was meh. Just plain old romaine with onion and tomato and balsamic. But whatever! It was still a nice, light lunch and I enjoyed it.

Main Street Cafe & Bakery, Ankeny, Iowa, Breakfast, Lunch, Coffee, Paninis

Not a super exciting photo, but this is a soy mocha and it was delicious! Almost too chocolatey (I like coffee drinks to taste like majority coffee), but still very yummy. I don’t have any particular complaints about the drink delivery vehicle, and I personally love the big straws at Panera.

I don’t disagree with Josh at all 😉

Atmosphere, Service, Price

Grace: It was very cute inside the Main Street Cafe! They played old standards, which was nice, and it was warm and cozy. I like that you order at the counter and get a number instead of having to wait and listen for your name to be called (that’s such a First World problem, but it can be difficult to hear sometimes). Everyone was so friendly, and the price was comparable to Panera, Palmer’s, etc. Please go! I want to go back and try their breakfast sometime.


Josh: This place is really cool inside! You order at the counter, they give you a number, and they bring your food to you. It’s easy, fast and well organized.

Unlike Panera where everyone stands near the front to wait for their name to be called. Savages. At least Main Street thinks and cares about the customer.

Main Street Cafe & Bakery, Ankeny, Iowa, Breakfast, Lunch, Coffee, Paninis

Before I go, please read an ENTIRE WEBSITE dedicated to bringing back the Chipotle Panini. Or one of the many reviews left online. I’m not the only one who wants change. The question is…do you?


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