The Cafe Metropole is one of Savannah's quirkiest and yummiest restaurants. Located in a refurbished Greyhound bus station on MLK Boulevard in downtown Savannah, the Metropole's high ceilings, low table-to-surface area ratio, and constantly rotating, unpretentious art gallery make it an awesome place to lunch in.

The bus station used to be in the 'hood (well, on the edge, anyway), but now we Savannians call it "the City Market district," meaning "not really in City Market, but sort of near enough to make you think you won't get killed when you go there."

The Metropole's staff make it a fun place to be: picture unshaven and tousle-headed Tom, who can quote John Hersey at you; the pragmatic, no-nonsense Clara, whose outstandingly obsessive and beautiful handwriting illuminates the menu; their completely spoiled baby Cal; or Clara's mom, grown-up hippie Marilyn, who has Seen Life and can offer sage counsel if you need it. Everyone there is sincerely warm and friendly and (I think) unassuming.

My favorite part about the Metropole is that they'll do stuff like give street kids a glass of water and chat while they're restocking the bar. That's the kind of place it is.

They seem to try to do business with locals, usually eschewing megalithic corporations. I like that, too, though they are not naive enough to think that they can bypass all commerce with soulless global entities.

Besides, the food rocks. They love to eat, and it shows. It's what I would describe as Mediterranean cuisine -- you know, olive oil, garlic, tomatoes, eggplant, fresh basil, and of course, amazing bread, baked every morning at 5am. (I know this because I cross their parking lot to go to my early-shift job; and sometimes I see Tom on break and we talk about the morning's baking).

You know how some people say, "it's not a great restaurant without great bread?" The Metropole is a great restaurant, and the bread is great too.

I'm not in any way, shape or form related to any of the owners (other than as a satisfied patron), but as someone who loves to eat, I offer it to you, who may also love to eat, as a wonderful place to eat when you visit Savannah, GA.

Oh yeah, look me up. We'll do lunch. :)

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