Things to do

Dinner for $20: Zada Jane’s Corner Cafe

The unconventional Zada Jane’s Corner Cafe is perfectly located on Central Avenue in the heart of Plaza Midwood. The best part about Zada Jane’s is the fact that you truly get the bang for your buck — I had delicious food, an adult beverage and a very full stomach, all for way under my $20 limit.

Side note: There’s shuffleboard out front, in case that’s your thing. I’ve always been tempted to start a game, but the siren call of wonderful food forces me to bypass playing.

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I went with my wife and two out-of-town friends for dinner on a Sunday night and was pleased to discover the fortuitous half-price bottle of wine special on Wednesdays and Sundays. We got a bottle of white. I never can remember what kind of wine pairs best with pancakes, but I knew I couldn’t go wrong with mixing alcohol and sugar.


My wife ordered the Green Mindmelt, which is a focaccia sandwich with portobella mushrooms, zucchini, squash, tomatoes, spinach and fresh mozzarella. It comes with their signature peppery-herb vinaigrette.

I don’t usually like vinaigrette, but their peppery version was surprisingly good. As for the focaccia, they pulled it off — it was right in the very small window of time for focaccia to be good. (When it’s getting stale, it transforms from wonderful to shoe leather.)

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I ordered the Pinckney Street pancakes with honey butter and syrup for $7.50. The syrup was so good that I considered drinking it straight from the pitcher, but I didn’t want the bottle of white wine to get jealous.

I chose turkey bacon for my side, which was pretty good.

Second side note: I like bacon only as a stand-alone product. People who throw bacon on top of a meal to add a new element of taste to their food are lazy. You just don’t t want to put in any work to actually approve the meal, guy.

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My tally was $7.50 for the pancakes and turkey bacon, and $5 for my half of the bottle of white wine, for a grand total of $12.50. Add on tax and tip, and you’re still out the door for way under $20.

Photos by Clayton Hanson.

Clayton Hanson @ClaytoninCLT