When I first went looking for the Seaside Cafe and Bakery, I nearly missed the tucked-away eatery in Shell Beach.
Its storefront is tiny, and there are few signs to direct you to the quirky cafe and coffee shop.
But now that I’ve dined there, I’ll know I’ll never miss this beachside gem again.
Owners Tim Begovich and Liz Lynch opened the cafe nearly two years ago and have slowly gained a following of loyal java-lovers who enjoy freshly made delectable breakfasts and lunches.
Is this heaven?
Each morning at 7 o’clock, the aromas of bread baking, pancakes and freshly brewed coffee welcomes groggy diners. There are a few cozy tables and a nice patio that is perfect to hang out on in warm weather.
The owners prepare everything from scratch, which guarantees that most menu items will be a sure bet.
During a recent visit—after the breakfast rush was over—I had my choice of blueberry pancakes, savory quiches, a variety of sandwiches, homemade enchiladas and two kinds of lasagna.
Although the variety of menu items seems a little random, all are prepared by cafe co-owner Lynch, who seems to be able to make anything taste good.
Breakfast items are enticing with oversized fruit scones, various muffins and homemade cinnamon rolls. The cinnamon roll, deliciously soft and gooey, was drizzled with a cream cheese frosting.
For lunch, the green chili chicken enchiladas are a standout. Ample chunks of white chicken are smothered in sour cream and tangy tomatillo sauce, then wrapped in a flour tortilla. The enchilada was the ideal blend of melted cheese and spices, making it one of the best enchiladas I’ve tasted in the area.
The daily quiche was a large wedge of fluffy eggs and cheese packed with Canadian bacon, green beans, spinach and tomatoes. The quiche is served with breakfast potatoes, an ultimate hash of sautéed potatoes, peppers and onions.
Add a little hot sauce and this makes for a tasty late breakfast or lunch that will keep you full throughout the day.
The sandwiches at Seaside Cafe are a pleasant surprise. Figuring that my turkey and avocado sandwich would be served on a croissant or French roll, I was delighted when it was placed in front of me on freshly baked wheat bread.
The thick slices of bread are toasted so they’re crispy on the outside and still warm and soft on the inside. The sandwich was filled with thick slices of turkey, cheese, lettuce and tomatoes. The sandwich was so ample that I saved half for my next day’s lunch.
A cup of java
Seaside’s coffee and tea selections will satisfy any enthusiast. The cafe offers at least three varieties of illy coffee, a rich Italian brew that is popular with coffee connoisseurs.
With so many coffee shops selling Costco-made products or prepackaged lunches, Seaside Cafe’s menu of freshly made dishes is a welcome return to the way coffee shops used to be.
Reach Dawn White at 781-7946.