Saturday, March 9, 2013

Black Walnut Cafe

Originally posted August 24, 2012

I am presently at their new location on Memorial.  I guess the outside decor is the latest fashion.  Greeting you as you walk up to the entrance are three large vegetables: red bell pepper, asparagus top and, what I would almost bet is a black walnut.

This is a restaurant.  So, the aim of the decor is different, I guess.  It's not homey. It's not hip.  It's maybe modern, I guess, but not avant guard. There's lots of large wood paneling, high ceilings with mechanically driven wood two-blade fans.  I don't know if you've ever seen these fans, but there is a central motor and set of pulleys and belts distributes out to spin the fans.

Smooth Jazz music plays constantly.  No indy bands.

There's a coffee bar (but not like an Italian coffee bar) and next to it is a gelato freezer next to a dessert cooler.

I'm handed a buzzer like those used at Cafe Express or Chuy's.  But I just ordered a croissant and cup of coffee.  How long should that take?

Although, I was never asked "would you like that heated?" was heated.  No fresh croissant here.  I'm sorry, a croissant is not toast.

As usual, with few exceptions, the coffee is good.  But I'm easy to please when it comes to coffee.  Having lived off of gas station coffee for most of my life, I'm probably not a good judge of the stuff.

They hand me a cup and point down the way to where the insulated hand-pump carafes are located.  These things are a modern convenience...but for a classy place like this... c'mon, there's a COFFEE BAR HERE! Can't you guys whip me up a cup from that?  I guess I have to physically sit... at the coffee bar to get THAT cup of coffee.

I've never been to any of the other Black Walnut locations.  But this place here seems...institutional.  Like Starbucks now is.

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