As a teacher, Cathe Pearson is always asked to attend many social functions, from schoolwide potlucks to team-building outings. Instead of bringing the usual potato salad, veggie tray, or flame-roasted book reports, she started bringing batches of her handcrafted cookies. She soon realized that as soon as she broke open her signature red tins, people were already clamoring for more. That's when she got the idea to start baking professionally.
Pearson bakes up a blend of classic and original cookies, such as oatmeal raisin, jalapeño-infused milk-chocolate Mexicali, almond-butter cranberry, and peanut butter. Customers can also design their own cookies, choosing from four basic doughs—chocolate chip, peanut butter, oatmeal, and sugar—and up to four adornments from a list that includes shredded coconut, white-chocolate chips, and locally grown nuts. To ensure that customers get the freshest batch possible, she delivers cookies in red tins the day they're baked and cooks with no preservatives or cryogenic agents.
Dedicating themselves to the unique pleasures of a cup of freshly roasted, skillfully brewed joe, Broadway Coffeehouse's baristas stay local, using beans from renowned Portland roaster Stumptown Coffee and stacking the display case with pastries from Salem's Great Harvest Bread Co.
The Oregonian aromas of the specialty brews and warm desserts fill the spacious café, whose expansive windows and crackling fireplace bathe the cushy couches and armchairs in natural light. A second-floor skyway overlooks the main seating area, and youngsters frolic in a family area while older people talk business in private conference rooms. In the warmer months, guests sit outdoors under the shade of patio umbrellas, safe from the sun's periodic spills of scalding-hot coffee.
Coffee in Motion?s baristas brew cups of Millars organic, wood-roasted, fair-trade coffee beans to create gourmet drive-thru coffees and espressos. At the Mission Street location, a cherry-hued bus with upstairs seating serves caffeine-seeking patrons around the clock, as the caf?'s extended schedule allows patrons to flout legally mandated naptimes. Along with coffee, the staff serves up a full menu of real fruit smoothies, fresh pastries, and toasted bagel sandwiches with a choice of toppings. For tea drinkers, locally brewed My Chai teas awaken sleepy patrons and incite their heart rates to soar like Amelia Earhart's pet falcon.
IKE Box inhabits the ground floor of a 120-year-old downtown building whose spacious ballroom now serves as the main seating area of the café. Baristas serve Sisters Coffee Company coffee and espresso alongside locally produced pastries, fresh hummus, and organic cookies. For added color, an onsite art gallery swaps in fresh works from community artists each month. IKE Box also has multiple large spaces for meetings and other get-togethers.
Committed to helping not just coffee drinkers and artists but the community as well, IKE Box is run by Isaac’s Room, a nonprofit youth organization that seeks to provide valuable life skills and training to divested youth.
A stripe of bright green skirts each LimeBerry's ceiling, leading patrons' eyes to a bank of stainless-steel dispensers framed in petite tiles. There, patrons fill paper cups with swirled ribbons of fro-yo flavors, such as rich chocolate truffle, tart wildberry, and creamy cake batter?up to 15 varieties in all. Confectionery caravans then move on to a toppings bar where they load on up to 80 choices of edible provisions, including warm fudge, fresh fruit, nuts, and marshmallow cream. Bright-green chairs host noshers beneath framed action shots of blueberries sticking triple backflips off a Yurchenko vault.
Each of Salem's three locations have been owned by the Scheel family since 1989. At each of these locations, chefs combine Great Harvest's venerated, additive-free recipes with their own to craft a heart-healthy assortment of whole-grain breads and baked goods using freshly ground flour and local honey. Each location designs their own menu that employs the season's freshest ingredients and harvests the warmest loaves from bread-bearing trees.