The Nautical Bean
The Nautical Bean Coffee House and Bistro is one of my regular haunts while I anticipate picking up my grandson from school. He and I made a deal; I will take him to school, play smashing word games on the way in the car, then I will go and write for four hours while he molds playdough, learns to count and climb trees. It is an excellent partnership. I have tried every coffee and breakfast place in the San Luis Obispo area and have consistently landed where the food and the coffee were only out done by the wonderful vibe. The Nautical Bean Coffee House is the definition of what a morning vestige respite should be. With a wonderful ambiance, fantastic coffee, virtuous food and free Wi-Fi; this is a writers dream.
Lines out the door of a local coffee shop make me smile. For this is a place with homegrown charisma with worldview pictures done by resident talent, skateboard and unflappable coffee sack art. The hip music adds to ambiance, but it is the food here that is the star. That and the best darn coffee anywhere. I am crazy about the Nutty Bean, but for extra caffeinated days I try the one with the cross bones, heady stuff. The staff is friendly and the cafe is a great place to write. Owner Brett Jones is down to earth and amazingly kind.
The Eggel is my favorite; a sesame bagel, toasted with scrambled egg, crème cheese, three strips of bacon (which I take to-go for my grandson’s after school snack that he calls “the gift he can eat”) onion and tomato slices. When I am feeling the need for a traditional bagel, I go for The Rabi Special that is a open faced bagel with a smear of cream cheese, tomato, onion, delicious lox (which is the Yiddish word for salmon) and capers. This sandwich is fulfilling and authentic.
Sweet muffins adorn the showcase, so on sugar inspired days, I nibble on an overflowing blueberry muffin. If you're after a not too sweet pastry, try the monkey bread, a pull-apart muffin with a bit of apple cinnamon deliciousness. When it is a sandwich I desire to fill my bites between sentences, I go for the Pesto Turkey which is a fresh ciabatta roll with turkey, onion, melted mozzarella, cucumber, tomato, avocado (I hold the lettuce) with a nutty pesto sauce. My other favorite is the Albacore Tuna Melt with an above average tuna salad with a hint of horseradish, served on thick, toasted sourdough with melted cheddar and tomatoes. I find all the food here top notch and delicious.
For a quick cup, studying or a meeting, this is a perfect spot. Nautical Bean Coffee House and Bistro is a family owned gourmet café located in the Laguna Shopping Center at 11560 Los Osos Valley Road in San Luis Obispo, or call them at (805) 543-3559. They are open Monday thru Friday from 6:00am to 9:00pm and Saturday and Sunday from 7:00am to 9:00 pm. It's rare to find kind, unpretentious coffee places where your work can soar.