Caffè 680

Caffè 680 may not be visible from Hawthorne Road, but it is easy to find after you make the turn by the newer brick business building just to the north of Costco's entrance. It's hard to miss the large "680" prominently and attractively displayed for easy viewing. Take the first driveway on the south side of the road and there it is--right on the building's corner.

I remember when the owners of Mill Creek Station first opened Caffè 680--Eatsalem's review is here. It was a great idea to put a casual eatery so close to all those soon-to-be-rented offices and two newer motels. Perhaps too soon? Since then, Dave & Vicki Boyles, who own Sassy Onion, added it to their somewhat recent acquisition of a couple local Cafe Todays.

N and I just happened to be in the area, finishing up a few errands. We were glad our hunger pangs hit us before 3 pm or we would've missed out on this experience. I glanced at my watch as we walked towards the door--2:40pm. To be courteous, after we entered, I asked if we were too late. "Oh no! Not at all!", those were our warm greetings from both Tina and Judy.

N had been hankering for some barbecue that afternoon, so perhaps it was kismet that their special of the day was a brisket sandwich with coleslaw. No, not barbecue, but it was close enough in a pinch. N ordered the special and I opted for the Harvest Salad, with a glass of iced tea for each of us. We took our tea over to one of the many window seats and people watched during our short wait.

It was probably because we were the only two in the cafe at that time, but we still appreciated the gesture of Tina bringing out our lunch. She was happy to answer our questions and chat awhile, even though I'm sure closing was on her mind. My salad had a base of fresh romaine with a sprinkling of carrot coins. Resting on top of the greens was a tender, juicy chicken breast, with a generous smattering of glazed walnuts and a lightly sweet vinaigrette. I was able to include chicken, nuts and romaine in each delicious bite. It featured such a nice balance of flavors and textures, I could eat it for lunch every day. :) My only suggestion/thought, is that maybe some small chunks of apple would provide a nice addition to the combination.

And then there was N. So completely wrapped up in savoring every single bite of his sandwich, if there had been sirens going off in the parking lot he wouldn't have blinked. I had to shatter his concentration to ask how it was. He carefully pulled out a wee slice of brisket, unencumbered by sauce, veg or bread. Slowly and attentively he chewed, "Not bad. It's full of flavor, tender and juicy. Exactly what I'd expect from a restaurant owned by Dave."

If your schedule allows you to dine out for breakfast or lunch Monday through Friday and you happen to be in the area, give this place a try. I hope your meal is as tasty as ours.

Monday-Friday 7:30 AM until 3 PM
680 Hawthorne
Salem, OR
for menu, click here
503 798-4126

1 comment:

Chuck Bradley said...

I had a bodaciously good Sandwich here today. I do not want to know the calorie count on this delectably decadent maxi-morsel. It's their Honey Turkey Bacon Tomato Melt with Swiss on thick Artisan Sourdough. Only try it if you're feelin' naughty, 'cause, if you eat it, you will be.