Ever Been to Il Fornaio Carmel?
Many coffee enthusiasts have perfected the art of preparing their cup of coffee from home, whether you like drip, french press, espresso, or percolator (my favorite camping coffee), there’s something for everyone! It’s great to have a consistent routine, but what about the days when you don’t want to lift a finger? Maybe it’s Monday morning and you never really had your “weekend,” thanks to housework and running errands. You’re so behind you didn’t have a chance to make your coffee, but a latte sounds like the only cure to whatever inconveniences you’re experiencing. We know the feeling, so here’s a local’s tip for quite possibly the best latte in town and the small size happens to come with a very appealing price tag under three dollars. Welcome to Il Fornaio in Carmel, CA.
Il Fornaio Carmel is my favorite place for coffee because I can order a top notch latte for $2.89. This is the smallest size, but even the largest (triple shot) is under $4. There’s something very peaceful about Ocean Avenue in downtown Carmel-by-the-Sea around 6:45am. I like to bring my iPad into Il Fornaio around this time to start my workday with emails. It’s also a great place for a coffee date. Il Fornaio is actually a restaurant chain that offers delectable Italian food, here’s a link to their Carmel menu. One of my clients introduced me to their coffee a few months ago, and we started meeting there for a pick me up before touring homes. Since then, I’ve been in an exclusive relationship with their latte!
Il Fornaio Carmel uses the best ingredients including Ghirardelli chocolate! When I asked what their secret might be (referring to coffee of course) their answer came as a surprise – their delicious pastries! There’s a bakery behind the building where they make their own bread. I was intrigued, so I added a bacon and egg croissant to my order, which came with two eggs and three large slabs of bacon cooked to perfection. I enjoyed this with my latte, and had a great start to a productive Sunday morning.
My Return to Il Fornaio Carmel – Needed Seconds!
I returned the following week and ordered my usual latte, but this time I tried the frittata for breakfast! It was simple, and exactly what I was craving – something light and healthy. While it wasn’t as filling as the croissant, it certainly gave me energy for the duration of my morning, and I felt a little lighter on my feet than when I attacked the bacon croissant!
After I learned about the quality of their ingredients, I began to wonder how they are able to offer a premium product for a low price. High sales volume made the most sense because new customers were steadily coming in, but the room never felt claustrophobic. They have a steady clientele, and while many visitors enjoy relaxing around the circular coffee house, many enjoyed their espresso drinks to-go while they walk to Carmel Beach or stroll San Carlos and Dolores Ave waiting for the shops to open. Whatever their business model, the Il Fornaio Carmel coffee shop is clearly doing something right! Next time you’re on Ocean Ave, check it out!