I fell in love with the Lazy Bay café and bakery when I first went there about ten years ago although, at that time, I was living in Vancouver. On the strength of the Lazy Bay alone, I decided that I could easily live in Deep Cove. The café had its own chef, who among other things made bread, the world’s best muffins (the Low Fat Plumberry transcended its name) and the world’s best chocolate ganache torte (definitely not low fat and every mouthful caused me to have to suppress undignified moans of pleasure).
I enjoyed countless cups of coffee and took the torte to many a birthday celebration over the next several years. The pasta salads were irresistible, and I often took home a container. The ginger tea, served hot in winter and iced in summer, was delicious. Sitting outside on a sunny day was a delight. You could even sit outside under cover when it was raining and that was a West Coast sort of pleasure of its own.
I think it was a couple of years ago that the neighbouring Safeway added a Starbucks outlet. At that point, it became only a matter of how long the Lazy Bay would survive. Then in late 2007 the local Bean Around the World was looking for a new location, as the building they were in was about to fall victim to the creeping condo madness that is making so many neighbourhoods mediocre. Soon, the Lazy Bay had departed and the Bean moved into the vacated premises.
On Sunday, I proposed to my friend Q that we go to Citroën on lower Lonsdale. I was looking forward to introducing it to her. Citroën had been there for a few years. They had good coffee (Saltspring organic) and delicious food. Since I am a coffee and muffin person, my favourite was the Morning Glory muffins baked in miniature flowerpots. But what made it special was that the interior was done with great flair. The colours were warm and rich. The owner, Dene Croft, is a superb painter and his original works adorned the walls. There were art deco figurines. And I particularly loved the typeface chosen for the name.
We drove past and I was surprised to see that it looked dark. I got out to check and confirmed that it was closed and all the fixtures had been removed.
Alas: another great coffee shop gone. Let us observe a few minutes’ silence as we sip our coffee this morning.