As you can tell from our last post, we simply adore Asbury Park. A year ago, in the midst of unemployment I reserved my grandmother's beach house in Destin, Florida, Averitt's Favorite, for a week in July. By hell or high-water I knew we would have jobs and celebrate at the beach a year later. But when we thought of taking the trip there, planes, trains, and automobiles, it just didn't sound all that relaxing. While scrolling "The Book" one night I saw this post on Cafe Volan's FaceBook page. I looked up and said, "Babe, let's go to Asbury Park and skip Destin." Sounds crazy, but it was by far the best decision. E. just hugged me and sighed with great relief. I knew right away we had to contact the B&B.
We have mad barista love for Paul and Doug who own this fabulous coffee shop just blocks from the B&B and are thankful for that FB post that triggered the memories we had a few years prior. After re-reading my post from our trip, I recalled that we were there just one week after the guys opened. Paul said we were their first big fans after their immediate family. We have kept up via Instagram...which is weird but wonderful in its own way. I share. I share a lot. But I do think of taking photos as "paying attention" and that it's a form of an extension of church. Paul is a great photographer. Follow him at @cafevolan.
Someone put these photos of Paul up on the wall. But the end of the week there was only one left. I don't think we are his only fans.
E. is the one that
drags brings me to coffee shops all over this great land. Our coffee pilgrimages are legendary. I have grown such an appreciation for latte art, nice baristas and light and airy spaces walking by My Charlie's side. Cafe Volan is truly the perfect combination of all of the above. I've said it before but the AP feels like a mini Hampden on the beach. The space felt smaller to me this time. More storage units have been added and the cork board warmed up the front door area. Their surf boards are still parked at the ready to shred at a moments swell. They sell cold brew coffee in bottles in the shop and on the boardwalk. On Sunday morning, E went to the train station to pick up our pals who came to visit from Harlem. As he was leaving there were two guys with writers note pads and one with a nice camera. I told E before he left that I bet they were from either the Rolling Stone magazine or the New York Times. Ding, ding, ding! New York Times baby. David Carr was writing a travel piece on the shore after the storm and stopped in for coffee. This isn't the first NYT piece. Check this link for more fun Asbury Park love.
This precious child was the ambassador of the cafe, saying hi to everyone as he cruised in on his trike. I'm pretty sure the pastries are from Balthazar in New York. The city is a very cheap $12.00 train ride away.
I finally caught up with Doug on our last day. He asked what we did last summer for vacation. I said, freaked out due to joblessness. It is crazy what can happen in a year and again, we couldn't be happier that we were able to travel.
I loved getting an iced latte during the heat wave that fit so lovely in my bike cup holder. I'm spoiled fresh by My Charlie.
It was so nice to be back at the cafe guys! Thanks so much for the barista love. Paul, it was great meeting your mom, sister and brother in the shop. You all really have created such a great space for people to relax and enjoy great, great coffee. It was encouraging to see so many new shops and restaurants in town. We are sending our best wishes to you and all the shops on Bangs for continued success.