Laura and I are aiming for more frequent lunches together this year, and we started off the year with lunch at the Frasca Caffe. I did my research and it looked like they had lots of yummy options, but I was worried about the “small space” description on the website. I thought maybe it was a tiny coffee shop with some food behind glass and 2 tables. Sometimes on my lunch break, when I used to leave the house on a semi-daily basis, I would think it was a good idea to go to a coffee shop for lunch and 100% of the time I would look at pre-made sandwiches and salads behind a glass case and get really sad and indecisive. Then I would end up getting coffee and a pastry and still eating whatever lame lunch I had brought and then needing a nap. I was pretty sure that wouldn’t happen with Laura because she would either be able to talk me into something, or we would just leave and sensibly pick some other place. But everything worked out beautifully, because although I could stand in the middle of the Frasca Caffe and touch all the walls if I had, like, 5 to 7 foot long arms, there were three tables not 2. AND the food behind the glass looked really really good, and they made our sandwiches to order so it was not in any way sad.
I thought it was a little odd that there were three people working behind the counter, when it wasn’t really very busy, but maybe we were there early. They were all very friendly and helpful and we appreciated the full disclosure, “Would you like a pickle with that for 30 cents extra?” No one wants to be caught by surprise by a pickle surcharge.
So – what did we get? I ordered the Toast Panini Caldi, which was basically a hot cheese and tomato sandwich. The bread was delicious, and the cheese was delicious, but I kind of wished it was 100% melted. The tomato was for texture, because it’s January. I liked it. Laura had the Verdure, which was mozzarella and grilled vegetables. I didn’t order that because I had no idea how to pronounce it. I think she liked it, I may have forgotten to ask. I know there was one type of vegetable in there (we think eggplant) that was un-bite-through-able. That’s not a good quality in a sandwich vegetable in my opinion.
But it was a very cute interior, and I do want to go back to try some of the breakfasty stuff and the pastries. In an alternate universe, I’d bike there for a pastry and coffee before doing some shopping on Pearl Street or working on my latest volume of poetry. This alternate universe may exist in the Spring, but it snowed here this week and it’s cold and I’m in one of those, I may never leave the house again moods. Although, I do have plans for lunch with Laura again soon.
The excellent company made the stringiest $9 sandwich transcend its rank. You forgot to mention it was a super lucky day for parking. See you and Jack Friday!