Sunday, June 6, 2010

Cali Fresh and BYOB: Four Cafe, Eagle Rock

My friend Shelley, an Eagle Rock local, introduced me to one of the new joints in her neck of the woods: Four Cafe, a seasonal, California-esque, BYOB cafe owned and operated by husband and wife duo Corey and Michelle Wiltons. Four Cafe takes a slow food method approach and uses produce from Farmers Markets. The atmosphere is very relaxing and unpretentious. It was actually owner Corey who took our order at the front (while Michelle cooks in back), giving us an old time laminated postcard as the order ticket and some equipment to open our bottle of pinot noir. Hurray for BYOB!

Lucky #7

The decor is new age Oregonian with lots of deep stained 2 x 4s used throughout the establishment.

Since we had just consumed a block of cheese from Trader Joe's washed down with a bottle of riesling before coming to Four Cafe, we decided to split a few lighter dishes, starting off with a large bowl of Fresh English Pea Soup ($6).  It was the perfect example of spring in a bowl, with shallots helping to round out the sweetness of the peas and spring potato adding to the creamy vegan goodness. The drizzling of olive oil gets a plus 1 from me :)

Fresh pea soup in all its vegan glory

Also arriving with our soup was a complimentary bowl of roasted chickpeas. I really enjoyed the crunch and heartiness of this snack.

TMJ sufferers beware: Crackly chickpeas

We shared the Smoked Albacore Salad ($11.50), which Shelley was slightly hesitant about being adverse to intense smokey flavors, but I persisted. Fortunately, our salad was pleasantly, as opposed to unbearably, smokey, tying in well with the other components of the salad: watercress, grapefruit, avocado and lemon vinaigrette.

Smokey & Citrus-ey Yum

Our Oven Roasted Tomato Panini ($8.95) came oozing with warmed burrata and soft, rich tomatoes held together on crusty fresh bread. The tuscan kale bedded underneath gave just a hint of bitterness, not distracting from the other flavors. I really enjoyed the simplicity and execution of this panini!

Panini Burrata Goodness

The Brown Butter Lavender Cookie ($2) was the perfect way to end our meal. Each bite of the fresh baked cookie melted in my mouth warranting signs of a cookie made with lots of delicious butter :) while the bits of lavender provided a refreshing and herbal component.

Brown butter lavender cookies: the new after dinner mint

While ordering, we couldn't decide between the cookie and the Salted Caramel Chocolate Cupcake ($2) so owner Corey brought us out both. I am not the biggest fan of caramel, having developed some kind of fear of overly sweet stickiness while working at a chocolate shop one summer but appreciate the sweet-savory things in life so I was curious. The rich caramel frosting with a hint of salt  on top of ultra fresh, moist cake would probably send most people to confession but it was too sweet for my tastes.

Salty Caramel Chocolate Cupcake

I can't wait to go back to Four Cafe again. They're new summer menu comes out in a few weeks so enjoy the spring goodies while you can! They're also open for breakfast.

Four Cafe
2122 1/2 Colorado Blvd
Eagle Rock, CA 90041
(323) 550-1988


weezermonkey said...

This looks adorable!

Diana said...

Sign me up for that salted caramel cupcake! And the soup too. And I suppose the panini while you're at it.

Nice work on the Eagle Rock eating, TALF. I was actually supposed to do din there on Friday, but the two hours of freeway traffic scared me away. Next time. Next time.

Kung Food Panda said...

Those 2 desserts looks absolutely delicious!

Gastronomer said...

D takes a B totally bailed on our Four Cafe date last week. Wah wah. Must get a meal here soon. Looks so good!

Banana Wonder said...

weezermonkey - yes! can't wait to go back this week with my mom!

Diana - I will sign you up for all of the above. You would approve of this place! Summer menu comes out in a few weeks - maybe i will crash your lady D + Gastro party? :)

Kung Food - yes yes, well you can have the salty caramel cupcake :)

Gastronomer - I'm coming back with you ladies ;0

H. C. said...

Glad to see your post on it; been curious about FOUR for some time now but haven't had a chance to actually check out. Sounds like something to piggyback onto my next tasting excursion at nearby Colorado Wine Company.

Banana Wonder said...

H.C. Going again on Friday if you care to meet up! But then I will have to go again when the summer menu comes out :) and yea, good thinking with the Colorado Wine combo

CaliforniaKat said...

I'm intrigued by the salted caramel cupcake and brown butter cookie. Just Googled to see if I can find a recipe.

Banana Wonder said...

CaliKat - Any luck finding the recipe? Those lavender cookies were scrumptious. I went back again and there was nothing left but a stem of lavender :( wah wah wah

lynn said...

i know i'm a year late on this post, but i'm going to four square tonight and stumbled upon this wonderful review! can't wait!