As soon as you walk through the doors of the Pennyroyal Café, you are instantly enveloped by the eclectic ambience that wafts like a whimsical bohemian vapor beneath the high ceilings. Antique couches, crystal chandeliers, artwork-filled walls and an Old Hollywood-style red carpet running from the doors to the counter make for the perfect place to unwind after a busy day. The owners of this joint, Nathan Robbins and Annali Kingston, opened the Pennyroyal in November 2008 with the vision of creating “a place to feel at home and relaxed.” After a lot of hard work and a lot more remodeling, they have done just that.
The space where the café is located used to be home to the now relocated Hookah Collection. When Nathan and Annali purchased this space back in June 2008, they knew they had a lot of hard work ahead of them. Acoustic ceilings, purple cut-out walls, and a heap of junk were soon greeted by a volunteer demolition team with a purpose.
After a comment made by Nathan’s father about “not knowing what they were getting themselves into,” Nathan replied with an eager, “You just don’t see the potential that we see. You just don’t see it.” With a lot of help from volunteers and friends, they were able to transform the place into a stylish bistro, art gallery and community center.
The ingenious name comes from the vision of mixing upper and lower class styles together to form the feeling of being rich in pennies. “I mean, most of these couches are from DI, but then you’ve got those chandeliers too,” explained Nathan. The most obvious tribute to the café’s name is the giant tree mural made of pennies covering the south wall as you enter.
While Nathan focuses more on the events that take place at the café, like musical performances and gallery stroll, Annali, a culinary student here at UVU, is the mastermind behind the food. “It was the day before we were set to open and we still didn’t have a side dish. On the spot, Annali just created the idea of the peach side salad,” Nathan said, “She’s really gifted like that.” The menu is chock full of delicious and unique sandwiches, including the popular “Pennyroyal Classic”, and inventive salads with adorable names like “Flower Power” and “The Goshfather.” The menu also offers vegetarian/vegan dishes as well as festively presented hot chocolate for those seemingly interminable snowy days.
If you haven’t already done so, check out The Pennyroyal Café for some delicious food and live entertainment. Once you stop in, you’ll be feeling right at home.
The Pennyroyal Café
155 N University Ave
Provo, UT 84601
www.pennyroyalcafe.com for upcoming events!