Sunday, November 8, 2015

Caffé del Sole

Richmond (District) Coffeehouses ~
Lucky 13

(Nessun sito ufficiale.)

Place: Caffé [ sic ] del Sole[1]
Location: 4342 California Street (between 5th and 6th Avenues); phonicular contact: (415) 386-1800
Hours: open at 7:00am every day (welllll... despite what the sign in the front door states: "We Are Open Everyday [ sic ] 7AM to 7PM", I suspect it may be more like 8AM-ish on the weekends, as they looked like they had just opened and were still setting up when I arrived at 8:20am this morning)
Meal: Breakfast Bagel ~ egg (uovo), ham (prosciutto), cheese (formaggio), tomato (pomodoro); un cannolu[2] (to start); and a medium cuppa LAVAZZA Premium House Blend

(I suppose that I could have gone with the classic 
Richie Havens cover of the Beatles song, "Here Comes the Sun", but I am pretty sure that I have used that at least once here already.)

Continuing along (as systematically as possible) with the Richmond (District) Coffeehouses series, I had to backtrack a bit to Caffé del Sole on California Street. This was supposed to have been my destination last Saturday, but they hadn't opened yet when I was there last. I am assuming (from the likes of the counter-guy person/owner-guy person[?]) that this is an Italian (or possibly Sicilian, as the counter-guy person/owner-guy person[?] said he was from Sicily) -owned and -run coffeehouse (o Caffè).

I have stopped in here a few times in the past, but never for una colazione reale. It's a standard (read: smallish) neighborhood coffeehouse. There are just five tables for two, one window/front seating booth for two-to-three, and two sidewalk tables for two (for use on days unlike this morning when il Sole is actually shining).

There really are just other bagel selections per una scelta prima colazione. There was a Veggie Bagel (which was explained to me by the counter-guy person/owner-guy person[?] to include tomato, onion [cipolla], and possibly lettuce [lattuga] or such). There were also the usual suspects for bagel toppings: butter, cream cheese, and hummus (hummus); as well as a few suspect non-usuals: butter & Parmesan (I have no idea what that might be, but I like the sound of it) or nutella®, both plain or with bananas (banane) (that combination might be worth trying on my own at home). They also have a Vegetariano (Panino) ~ fresh tomato, marinated artichokes (carciofi), and hummus; and while not really a breakfastary choice, I am sure I could have ordered that one and would have liked it, too.

This was a very good way to start the morning. It was Chocolate coated (inside) the cannoli tube (and, yes, I am well aware that saying "cannoli tube" is akin to saying "shiitake mushroom", but I am using it here specifically to distinguish the pastry shell from the entire finished product). Plus, they have added candied orange peels/rinds on the ends: Cioccolato, arancione, e Caffè ~ una combinazione molto buona! The counter-guy person/owner-guy person(?) told me that they get their pastries from un panificio locale italiano.

Once again, as with many coffeehouses without a full (actual) kitchen area, the scrambled eggs were cooked in one of those new-fangled microwave oven things. All in all, this was a nice enough bagel-sandwich. Of course, I got this senza la carne di maiale morto e in decomposizione. I was glad to see that it wasn't made with any of that falso formaggio 'mericano; it was made with Cheddar cheese, but I would have expected either Mozzarella, Provolone, or Fontina (or one of the other hundreds of autentico formaggio italiano). I am sure it would be even better made with either Roma tomatoes or sundried tomatoes, too.

The Coffee (Caffè) was a decent Italian brand. 
LAVAZZA is not as well-known in the States as illy® might be. I am not sure which is the more popular Coffee (Caffè) in Italy, though.

Also, once again, I didn't bother to find out what Caffé del Sole might offer for condimentary supplements. I did use a little of my own Fat Cat Strawberry Serrano Hot Sauce (Thanks, Cindy & Greg!) on the scrambled eggs in the bagel-sandwich.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Breakfast Bagel ~ 6.0; Cannolu ~ 6.6; LAVAZZA Premium House Blend ~ 6.5


1. Stupid, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day:

The name of the Caffè (and please take note that this is the correct Italian spelling) simply means "Coffeehouse (or Coffee) of the Sun".

I questioned the counter-guy person/owner-guy person(?) why they have "Caffè" mispelt con accento acuto e non con accento grave. He stated that when they had originally contracted to have the signs made, the sign-maker/artist-guy (who also happened to be Italian) decided to just go with the ubiquitously incorrect spelling (taking its cue from the Frenchy "Café" spelling).

And, luckily, unlike yesterday, Google Translate does actually offer an Italian-English or English-Italian service. I suppose there are more than 20-30 million native Italian speakers in the world.

2. Hey, Brian, why are you spelling "cannolo" (which is the singular form of "cannoli") like that? Well, this pastry dessert is originally from Sicily and the correct sicilianu word is spelled "cannolu" (singular) or "cannula" (plural). And I, for one, would never go against the family's way of spelling these.

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