The Scene

Best bets for bakeries, coffee shops, cafes in Starved Rock Country

The inside of Jeremiah Joe Coffee in Ottawa.

When it comes to starting your day off right, there’s no more delectable way than with a steaming cup of coffee and a freshly baked treat. In Starved Rock Country, you’ll find a delightful array of coffee shops, bakeries and cafes that will kick-start your morning on the perfect note.

Jeremiah Joe Coffee

807 La Salle St., Ottawa

Jeremiah Joe Coffee

Located in the heart of downtown Ottawa, Jeremiah Joe has been providing delicious fresh-brewed beverages since 2002. With a full menu of coffee and espresso-based drinks made from five signature house blends of imported coffee beans, Jeremiah Joe Coffee has remained a favorite among locals. From simple black coffee to blended cold-brew espresso drinks, Jeremiah Joe caters to all stripes of coffee aficionado.

Steve’s Bakery

221 E. Norris Drive, Ottawa

302 E. Main St., Streator

Steve's Bakery has locations in Ottawa and Streator.

The locally beloved Steve’s Bakery is renowned for the freshly prepared assortment of classic baked goods. Indulge in the famous doughnuts, turnovers and danishes, all served with a side of nostalgia. With generations of loyal customers, it’s a local institution perfect for a morning treat alongside a steaming cup of coffee. Choose from two convenient locations in Ottawa and Streator.

Blue Eyed Rascal

121 E. Main St., Streator

Streator’s Blue Eyed Rascal offers a unique cafe experience with its vibrant decor. Sip carefully crafted lattes (made using Chicago’s iconic Intelligentsia Coffee), and explore a diverse selection of handcrafted breakfast pastries and other sweet treats. The welcoming atmosphere makes it a favorite spot for both locals and tourists, especially those exploring nearby Starved Rock State Park. For more information, visit the Facebook page.

Nonie’s Bakery

522 S. Clark St., North Utica

Nonie’s Bakery in Utica is a hidden gem with a warm, friendly atmosphere. The delightful bakery is known for its freshly baked cinnamon rolls and a selection of nostalgic treats. Conveniently located just a short drive from the gates of Starved Rock State Park, Nonie’s is a place where you can savor a slice of the past with every bite, making it a must-visit for a cozy start to a day of outdoor adventure.

Millstone Bakery

216 Marquette St., La Salle

Photo submitted by co-owner Kent Maze of Millstone Bakery featuring their pastry and bread display

In the heart of La Salle, Millstone Bakery shines with its commitment to high-quality regionally sourced ingredients. The menu features irresistible fresh-baked daily bread and pastries, including flaky croissants and hearty signature sourdoughs. Don’t leave without exploring the selection of seasonal treats for a delightful sweet start to your morning. This passion project and community hub also serves up excellent coffee, brewed fresh with beans from a favorite local roaster, Starved Rock Coffee Co.

Lock 16 Cafe and Visitors Center

754 First St., La Salle

Enjoy a locally roasted cuppa Joe at the beautiful I&M Canal Cafe and Visitors Center. It is set inside a former carriage shop originally built in the early 1910s, and you’d be hard-pressed to find a more architecturally interesting place to enjoy a latte in Starved Rock Country. The Lock 16 Cafe is run by The Coffee Hub, a local favorite cafe and roaster based out of Lacon. Savor your coffee and breakfast treats with stunning canal views and a visit to the onsite visitors center, where you can delve into the area’s rich heritage.