A pleasant drive from the city, Edwardsville is a picturesque college town that just happens to be home to one of the area's best restaurants. Erato (126 N. Main St.; 618-307-3203; www.eratoonmain.com) features the cooking of Kevin Willmann: inventive in design, beautiful on the plate and outright delicious from first bite through dessert. Erato alone is worth a trip, but a few blocks up Main Street is this year's Best Bakery, 222 Artisan Bakery (222 N. Main St.; 618-659-1122; www.222bakery.com). Besides turning out delicious breads and pastries, 222 roasts Goshen Coffee, a previous year's deserving winner for Best Coffee. And if you visit Edwardsville on a Saturday morning from late spring to early fall, you can shop the Land of Goshen Community Market, a farmers' market to rival any other in the region.
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