If you open the doors to the smell of fresh coffee, look around and see yourself surrounded by handmade teapots, baseball cards, scarves and a wine bar, where are you?
In the middle of Café Earth, a local coffee house that doubles as an eclectic small town emporium in the heart of downtown Silverton, Oregon.
Silverton is perhaps most famous for Stu Rasmussen, the first transgendered mayor in the US. Stu stopped in while I was there and we had a nice conversation as he was waiting for his mocha. I must say the fire engine red platform heels, the midi skirt and the handcuff strapped purse were a stunning combo for the mayor.
But while Stu is famous, I went in for the coffee and the local character of this downtown venue. I was not disappointed and knew I was somewhere special as soon as I opened the door of this 120 year old historic building.
Too often a cup o’ joe has been reduced to a strip mall Starbucks, or perhaps in Oregon, Coffee People. But if you really want to get some local flavor, leave those behind and visit the non traditional places like Café Earth.
Here you’ll find cards, cribbage boards, games and books to occupy your time and even a small living room alcove complete with HD TV. Once you add the fresh coffee from Silver Falls Coffee Roasters, you’ll think you are in heaven.
Michelle, queen of the kitchen, makes sure her customers are happy, whether that means responding to a request from a customer for a specific lunch soup, like she did today, or putting the finishing touches on one of the daily vegetarian or gluten free offerings.
Trust me on this. In an era of big box coffee retailers, a place like Café Earth, owned and operated by locals Monte and Michelle Fenney is a welcome throwback to an earlier time. You’ll like it, you can talk to the owners, and in this case, if you visit in the afternoon, you can even taste some wine from the Pudding River Wine Cellars.
And who knows, maybe Monte will even point you to the famous murals of Silverton, Oregon.