ALLEY CAT CAFÉ

hand painted light blue sign with silhouette of a cat on an arrow with a cocked head in black. the sign is placed before a door that seems to only be half above the sidewalk, half below

31 N Saginaw

Pontiac, Mi 48342

The place is reminiscent of a café out of the 90’s, more a place to hang, socialize, and caffeinate than admiring pour overs and siphon brews. Rustic old floors and wooden tables, coloring pages taped to the wall, chalkboard menus spread around. Old paint a little worse for the wear. Serving up a simple menu of sandwiches and standard beverages. Most of the baked goods appear to be purchased from a restaurant supply store.

When I asked what was good, I received the response “depends on what you like” followed by silence.  

I was impressed with the barista’s ability to multi-task. They also seemed to have a pleasant camaraderie with the locals that spend time on computers, here. I was extra impressed with the breakfast sandwich on which I decided. Just a basic toasted croissant with an egg, bacon, and avocado. A skimping of avocado didn’t diminish how surprisingly delicious this really was.  For $5.50, it was worth it.

toasty croissant with soft cooked egg, avocado, cheese, and bacon

The double espresso was pulled with decent skill using Cadillac coffee, Caffé  Venezia , on a  machine that seemed older than me, but to function properly.  With heightened bitter accentuated by cocoa notes, lacking acidity, but with a nice sweetness,this is the type of espresso that is probably designed to make a sweet, milky beverage and not to be consumed alone. The barista did follow-up with me and I let her know my experience. She asked that I try again, in the future, as she believes the beans may have been a different coffee placed, accidentally, in the hopper.While there, another customer also stopped by and mentioned her espresso had more bitter than usual. I wonder why not just empty the hopper and put the appropriate beans in?

I smile and take a selfie with the cafe behind me, A long row of tables for four on my right with light streaming in the windows. The bakery case and counter behind me left.

If I visit this area again, or live there, I would definitely make a habit of starting my work day here for a couple hours, with the sandwich and maybe some drip coffee or a latte.

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