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Monday, October 17, 2011

A perfect hour

A good book, espresso and cake at Octane
I followed Besha to the new Octane in Grant Park Sunday. The coffee shop/bar is within walking distance of our house.

The shop was doing quite a brisk business Sunday afternoon, even though it remains in "soft opening" mode. That means, essentially, limited hours and incomplete food options. At 5 p.m. daily, Octane offers table service and a menu of small plates, such as deviled eggs, a fried egg sandwich and some special pastries from Little Tart Bakery, which shares the space with Octane. Sunday, it was offering a lavender and blackberry-honey panna cotta. I was too early to get it.

But Little Tart offered plenty of goodies from its amply stocked area of the shop. I ordered their almond cake to accompany my doppio macchiato. Just like the espresso at the Westside location, it was perfect — slippery, a touch sweet and a touch bitter. The cake, made with ground almonds, was delicious too. I passed a very pleasant hour with a good book in the large, sunlit space.

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