“Mix a little foolishness with your serious plans. It is lovely to be foolish at the right moment.”
One sip of Foolish Things oak aged cold brew coffee tells everything about the craft of coffee– and much about the art of building community.
Yet this is only one handcrafted drink for which Foolish Things is known. Add to this distinctive drinks like the Raspberry Vanilla Shrub, with its splash of housemade raspberry vanilla drinking vinegar and sparkling water, and a visit to this downtown coffee house is an oh-so-smart thing to do.
Owners Justin and Katie Carpenter are intent on the distinctive alchemy they want to achieve with Foolish Things Coffee House. “We want the conversation to be about crafting gourmet quality flavors grounded in outstanding hospitality.”
“We want to create a place where all ages and interests can find a place to meet and be comfortable.” Justin said. This focus on creating community is not a wacky side venture. It is a definite intention of the owners and works well for the various local organizations that regularly meet here.
On my visit, a chess game was in full tilt alongside couples out for Saturday brunch. Tablets and laptops dotted the landscape, sharing room with guests along the dark wood community tables. And tucked away behind a curtain wall, partygoers enjoyed a baby-shower.
“Our hope is that visitors feel at home here,” said Justin. Whether working or with friends, there’s a place for you at Foolish Things’ tables.
Thoughtful components, such as the community tables, are purposefully chosen to encourage dialogue, community and discussion. For this diner, it was a nice distinction to an old world custom of meeting people in common areas, fostering friendship and discovering new ideas.
I like the idea of having lunch with my adult children while settling alongside area artists, writers, and entrepreneurs.
Yet the most thoughtfully appointed restaurant will succeed when its food does, and Foolish Things takes their products very seriously. Housemade, gluten-free granola with local Lomah dairy yogurt, sweetened with a touch of Gold Standard Honey make even a snack memorable.
Whenever possible, syrups and breads are made in house, and local ingredients are used. “We want our offerings to be the best we can offer,” said Justin, “and we never compromise taste for trends.”
Breakfast sandwiches, such as the #2 (Egg, tomato, spinach and mozzarella) are served on housemade English muffins. Crazy-good! Foolish Things hopes to broaden their menu to include more breakfast and brunch items.
I enjoyed the exuberant offerings of their Signature Drinking Guide most of all. My personal favorite was the Dusty Rose, made from housemade rosewater lemonade and espresso. This taste is like a grown-up summer drink, and comes tastefully served barware style. The Saint Frank, tonic water and espresso, just might be my next summer crush.