Founder Jeff Ericson insists his staff only pours fairly traded Specialty Grade Arabica coffee beans. By roasting only USDA Certified organic beans, all grown in the shade to farmers' personal standards, the coffee guru and his company can promise a consistently less acidic cup of coffee. Roasts range between light to dark and espresso, and include varietals from Sumatra, Honduras, Peru, and Brazil. For anyone uninterested in lattes, mochas, or any drink crafted at the full espresso bar, the shop serves retro sodas, Frozen X-Plosion smoothies, soft-serve ice cream, and deli sandwiches prepared with Del Fox Custom Meats. Fresh bread and produce from Breadfarm and Klesick Family Farm, as well as gourmet chocolate truffles from Pirate's Chocolate, are also available. Guests can sip their drink of choice as their eyes peer out from the coffee shop windows, which showcase the landscape between Puget Sound and Livingston Bay's mountain views, beaches, and small dogs, probably.
Attic Secrets cafe & tea has lived up to its name by being a hidden gem in the Marysville area since 1991. But when current owners Rick and Happi Favro, took over in 1998, word got out about the quaint teashop, attracting not only interested tea drinkers but also the attention of_Evening Magazine_, who presented the tearoom with the Best Tea House 2010 award. And the duo continues to attract curious guests and seasoned sippers by offering more than 30 loose tea options, from decaffeinated black and fruity herbals to specialty Rooibos flavors. These cups of brewed leaves can be enjoy from within two tearooms or the Lady Haley dining room, each elegantly decorated in soft pale hues and English countryside décor.
Attic's team also instills elegance into their lunch menu, which includes a cold waldorf sandwich, a French roll layered with hot ham and melted Swiss, and a wide variety of salads. Non-tea drinkers can also quench palates with a cup of velvet coffee, Italian soda, and flavored lemonade. Along with tea, seasonal events and a monthly Craft and Chat session keep guests entertained, in addition to the year-round gift shop.
Blue Heart Art's passionate staffers hand-select every locally created treasure that they stock, which includes photo-enhancing picture frames ($5.99–$15) and fruit-themed towels, ideal for making soaps salivate and subsequently lather themselves ($6.99–$7.99). Like early morning office hours and turtle races, viewing the shop's art and home furnishings may be enhanced by the consumption of coffee. Blue Heart Art's on-site coffee lounge brews fair-trade, Seattle-roasted beans, and head barista Jordan crafts creative potables such as the smooth and sweet raspberry truffle latte ($3.95 for 16 oz.). The café's warm, lounge-like décor—replete with a couch and club chairs—encourages patrons to relax and hug throw pillows.
Following her culinary curiosity all the way to Varcaturo, Italy, Tiffany Hudson’s found herself learning dry farming and food preservation. More importantly, she discovered how a dinner can bring a community together. After coming back to the States, Tiffany teamed up with Chef Martin Woods whose resume includes serving as opening sous chef at Bastille as well as executive chef at Re:Public. Together, the two created Cassoulet Café, an eatery that serves seasonal French cuisine amid a communal table.
And the collaboration isn’t running short on admirers. Writer Sally Wolff for the Cascadia Weekly praised Cassoulet as “evok[ing] the atmosphere of a country kitchen in France” complete with “heavy plates of well-made food.” These ever-changing entrees have included bacon cinnamon rolls for brunch, ratatouille for lunch, and goat cheese pansotti pasta for dinner, accompanied by specialty cocktails and ciders. Chef Martin also serves up the restaurant’s signature French bean stew bursting with duck and house-cured pancetta.
Along with promoting conversation amongst diners, Cassoulet Café fosters green living. This includes using fresh ingredients from local farms as well as reducing their carbon footprint by 1,200 pounds of CO2 emission. That accomplishment earned the restaurant a 2012 Sustainable Practice Leader award from General Biodiesel, a company named after the first robot five-star general in U.S. history.