Sunday, March 11, 2007

Tomales Bakery

This morning I woke up and realized that I had no milk in the house for my coffee. As much as I may try to deny it, I'm afraid I actually DO need coffee in the morning. I didn't have any yesterday, and I was wiped out and headachey by mid-afternoon. But I CAN'T drink my coffee without milk. At work, I actually water it down and then add milk. (Though, it should be said, the coffee at work is labelled "strong" and "not so strong" and I'm pretty sure that "decaf" is a four letter word around there).

Anyway, what that meant this morning was that I had to go out for either coffee or milk. I'm a solid 12 miles from the nearest grocery store, so I took the go out for coffee option, and went into the town of Tomales, which is only a few miles from my house. There's not a whole lot to Tomales: A general store, a coffee shop, a sandwich shop, a cute little hotel that usually doesn't even have anyone at the front desk (you get a key code to get in and out), and a teeny tiny park with swings and pine trees that shed cones as big as my head. That's about it, and I love it.

In any case, Tomales Bakery = AWESOME. I can't believe I've lived here for 2 months and haven't made it in till today. This may become my new Sunday ritual. It's this teeny-tiny little shop that smells like heaven. You can barely fit 3 people inside. Anyway, I got there nice and early, so it wasn't packed yet, and I had my pick of the pastries. (supposedly they sell out of almost everything by 11am most days). I had a humongous pecan roll that was absolutely delicious and perhaps the best coffee I've ever had. Just plain old coffee, but I doctored it up with a bit of organic brown sugar and some Strauss Family Creamery half and half, and it was absolutely delicious. Strauss milk is fabulous. Unfortunately, it's also VERY expensive. A half-gallon glass bottle of it costs around 5 bucks (including a dollar bottle deposit, but still). I've bought it a couple times, and even the skim tastes super-rich and fresh. But, really, I can't justify spending that kind of money on milk most of the time.

Other advantages to Tomales Bakery:

1. You get to pour your own coffee, which is good for me because I like to make mine about 1/3 caffeinated and 2/3 decaf.

2. It has these lovely wooden chairs outside where you can sit and drink your coffee and read the paper

3. If you go early in the morning, it isn't yet overrun with bikers and tourists, so you can watch the locals chat outside the post office, pet the dogs that wander around, and just breathe the lovely air and enjoy the quiet.

4. They're cheap! My coffee and cinnamon roll was only 3.50 total. And their loaves of fresh-made bread are about half the price of all the other local bakeries I've seen.

5. They'll call you to let you know when you've stupidly forgotten your wallet on their counter and not make fun of you at all when you go back to retrieve it. :-)

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