Using Sightglass coffee, Bartavelle serves the BEST latté in Berkeley! Opened in late 2012 this unassuming café already has a local following. Small place with stand-up only zinc counters inside plus outdoor seating. The small plate menu uses local ingredients in inventive ways and often they add menu items according to what's in season. Open for breakfast and lunch. They have a relationship with Kermit Lynch Wines next door so you can pair your lunch with one of Lynch's wines. Nice staff.
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Made for a Queen
The Kouign-amann is a pastry that hails from the Brittany region of France and one that is done to perfection in Berkeley at the recently opened Bartavelle Coffee and Wine Bar at Cedar St. and San Pablo Ave.
The name derives from the Breton words for cake (kouign) and butter (amann) and it's a round, crusty pastry made with bread dough that contains layers of sugar and butter folded within. What's not to like? The cake is then baked until the butter causes the dough to rise and the sugar caramelizes. I've been told from a friend with pastry chef credentials that it's easy to mess up and that the ones we've shared at Bartavelle are the best she's had in America. I'd have to agree, I spent many a summer leading bicycle trips in the Brittany region of France and let me just say that I've done my kouign-amann homework.
Be sure to tuck in to this treasure of a coffee shop on a cold day and add your own happy steam to those windows.