Sweet Magnolia Cafe, a new restaurant in Seven Points in Florence, Alabama, has quickly become the place everybody’s going to. Owners Doug Johnson and Ken Shepski have created a stylish eatery that offers fresh and creative food (I could just dive into that salmon salad right now) combined with friendly and attentive service — always a winning approach no matter how scary the economic scene. The small inside space is somehow both cozy and chic and nobody seems to mind the literal lack of elbow room — this is not the place to gossip unless you want all of Florence to hear about your cousin’s neighbor’s sister-in-law’s affair. You can also dine outside, on one of Seven Points’ actual seven points — one of the best sidewalk-cafe spots around, especially when you’re sipping an espresso and nibbling on Italian Creme Cake and thinking that next time you’re really going to have to try the Red Velvet Cake, too. And of course you know I can’t go into a restaurant without checking the bathroom — and Sweet Magnolia gets extra credit for extending its theme of efficient yet upscale design even into this all-important room. In fact, I would recreate the whole bathroom in our own house, although my husband, for some reason I still don’t understand, detests the sink-bowl trend and prefers the good ol’-fashioned white enamel sink with three-fixture chrome faucets. Oh, well. I think Sweet Magnolia’s stylish version might change even his mind. Seven Points in Florence — a formerly bustling retail center with tons of history and ambiance — is one of those areas that people shake their heads about and say, “It’s such an interesting spot with so much potential. Somebody should go in and open up someplace really cool.” Well, now somebody has. Let’s hope for the best. Visit the Sweet Magnolia Cafe’s Web site at http://www.thesweetmagnoliacafe.com/.
Published by Coffee with Cathy
I'm a media coordinator, an editor & an adjunct journalism instructor who also writes about style, history, food and the arts in Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee. My husband is a newspaper sports editor, and he and I are from middle Tennessee. Older Daughter and her husband, an artist and high-school art teacher, live nearby with our three grandsons. Younger Daughter works in grants proposals & also lives nearby. View all posts by Coffee with Cathy