...enough with The Happy Gnome and Nina's. Honest to goodness, I cannot go on another first date to either of those places...
Looking for a quality short list of places--coffee, pastries, drinks/nosh, even light/not particularly spendy meal--to save myself from fortysomething-dude-suggested-place-ubiquity.
Bonus points for: parking lots, good people watching, fun or interesting atmosphere, a feeling of accessibility (i.e. food is not too sophisticated or challenging), Saint Paul or Minneapolis North Loop...also, maybe you have had a good first date experience somewhere.
I was married (but no longer) to a fan of chains, so don't have recon for a lot of suitable date places under my belt yet. Thanks in advance!