I was wandering Fourth Avenue just after sunrise when a coffee craving hit, so I ducked into Revolutionary Grounds, a small, leftist coffee shop and bookstore in the old Rainbow Planet spot at 606 N. Fourth Ave. The coffee was strong; the books on everything from Leon Trotsky to self-made clothing were worth a browse; and the outdoor area peppered with spice plants will be lovely when the heat abates. The place serves food, too. Hours: 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Thursday; 8 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday; and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sunday. 620-1770; revolutionarygroundsonline.com.
Watermelons, squash, corn, beans and many other foods have been cultivated along the Santa Cruz River for more than 4,000 years, but it'll only take you an hour or so to learn about it at the Fields to Tables exhibit, opening Saturday, Aug. 1, at the Joel D. Valdez Main Library (101 N. Stone Ave.). The show—which closes Monday, Aug. 31—celebrates local agricultural history through photographs by Josh Schachter and writings by Anita Fonte and Steven Harvath, and it's free. Call 791-4010 for more information.
All tortillas are not created equal. If they're still warm when purchased, you're in for a treat—but the cold, prepackaged ones can leave you feeling as flat as the food itself. A recent meal called for quality, so I headed over to the grand opening of La Mesa Tortillas' newest location (2112 W. Grant Road; 623-9703) for some of their jalapeño-flavored tortillas. They were undeniably fresh, but could've benefited from more flavor and kick. La Mesa—which also has storefronts at 7823 E. Broadway Blvd. and 3929 E. Pima St.—sells unflavored corn and wheat tortillas, too, and serves lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday through Saturday. Visit www.lamesatortillas.com for more information.
El Güero Canelo (5201 S. 12th Ave., 295-9005; 2480 N. Oracle Road, 882-8977) was named one of the "Top 10 Best New Places for Hot Dogs" in the August edition of Bon Appetit magazine. "Of America's many regional hot dog styles, the Sonoran is one of the least known," the article reads. Our beloved Sonoran dogs may be a rarity elsewhere, but El Güero Canelo—a frequent Best of Tucson® winner—has dished them up since 1993.