•Open since: June 2004
•Capacity: Northern Star seats 50 inside and 50 on the patio.
•Location: The coffee shop is located in downtown Norcross, across the street from Norcross Station Cafe.
•Hours: 6:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 6:30 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday. Northern Star is closed on Sundays.
•Atmosphere: "People come here to sit and meet and talk and get a cup of coffee," said owner Bill Luebben.
The front part of the coffee shop is furnished with comfortable chairs and sofas. Northern Star's square tables can easily be pulled together to seat large groups, Luebben said.
The exposed brick walls of the coffee shop serve as gallery space, with exhibits that rotate every two months. Near the back door, photographs documenting the renovation of the building can be found.
•The food: Northern Star offers pastries and sweets. The selection varies, but chocolate indulgence cake is available every day. "We always have to have that because people count on it," Luebben said.
Cinnamon rolls and scones are baked at the restaurant. "The pastries are all organic. They're made fresh every day," Luebben said.
•Beverages: Northern Star offers coffee drinks and other hot beverages.
"As far as drip coffee goes, interestingly enough, we serve more dark roast than anything else," Luebben said.
All of the coffee at Northern Star is certified organic and certified fair trade.
The Turtle Mocha, made with chocolate, hazelnut, espresso and steamed milk, is a popular drink. Customers also like the chai tea lattes.
The Hot Angels, which are steamed milk and either vanilla or honey, are often ordered. "The Hot Angels are pretty popular year round," Luebben said.
Northern Star also serves wine. "We try to select wines that are moderately priced that you will not find in the grocery store," Luebben said.
•Entertainment: "Each night of the week, we try to have something different going on," Luebben said.
Northern Star hosts a poetry night on Monday and an open mic night for musicians on Tuesday. Activities on Wednesday vary. On Thursday, an open mic night for aspiring comedians is held. On Fridays, musicians perform at the coffee shop.
The coffee shop hosts wine tastings on the second Wednesday of every month. The next wine tasting will take place at 7 p.m. Dec. 14. Admission is $25.
•Things you might not know: "Instead of just serving coffee, we try to be community oriented," Luebben said.
To assist with Hurricane Katrina relief, the coffee shop auctioned off artwork by kids from Norcross Elementary School. The event, which included a wine tasting, raised $1,200.
Local students are also invited to enter the coffee shop's annual T-shirt design competition. The winning drawing is used for the Northern Star T-shirt.
On the menu
•Cinnamon roll ($1.90)
•Almond bar ($2)
•Piece of chocolate indulgence cake ($4.25)
•Cup of hot chocolate (small: $1.65, medium: $1.98, large: $2.31)
•Chai Tea Latte (small: $2.86, medium: $3.30, large: $3.63)
•Shooting Star: Coffee with espresso (small: $1.98, medium: $2.20, large: $2.48)
•Chocolate Raspberry Truffle drink: Chocolate, raspberry, espresso and steamed milk (small: $3.14, medium: $3.69, large: $4.02)