There’s a new place in town!

Those of you who don’t live in small towns may not completely understand the excitement that prevails when a new eatery opens its doors around here. I still remember when the Thai place opened in Williamstown, the next town over from here; for weeks, any time one ran into a friend or acquaintance, the question was not “how are you?” but “have you been to the new Thai place yet?” We take our restaurants seriously here in northern Berkshire.

So believe me when I say I almost jumped for joy when I saw that Cup and Saucer had finally opened, right across the street from Inkberry central.

The place that now houses Cup and Saucer used to be the Appalachian Bean. We held a reading there last March, which was great fun. They weren’t the best joint in town, but they were convenient, and friendly, and everybody liked having them there.

Until they went out of business last summer. Brown paper immediately went up, covering the windows, along with a “Coming soon: cup and saucer!” sign. First it said “Coming soon: October,” then that was scratched out and it said “Coming soon: November,” and by December I had more-or-less given up hope that we would ever see a coffee shop in the old Bean space again.

But lo and behold, the place is open! So Jill and I took our two new interns, Elizabeth and Ann-Louise, there for a celebratory lunch.

The space is as wide-open and echo-y as ever. They spiffed up the paint, and put blue oilcloth on the tables. On the back wall, they’ve painted their logo above a small stage which currently sports several tall stools. (Could folk music and improv comedy be in our future?) And, best of all, the food is good. I had a cup of “Fire and Rice with Chicken” soup, a southwestern delight filled with sundried tomatoes, roasted peppers, chicken and rice. (I wouldn’t call it “fire,” myself, but it had good flavor to it — and hey, I come from Texas, so I may have unorthodox notions about what constitutes spicy food.) Jill and I shared a roast beef sandwich, which turned out to be grilled, and quite delightful.

I’m a big fan of Brewhaha, around the corner on Marshall Street, and I intend to keep going there. I love their food, their coffee, their décor, and the people who run the place. But Brewhaha isn’t open on Wednesdays, and that’s one of my two North Adams days each week. Something tells me I’ve found my new Wednesday lunch joint.

Sitting in the Inkberry classroom, stickering calendars with address labels, I can gaze across the street into the windows of the Cup and Saucer. One of these days I might have to head over for a cup of hazelnut coffee and a slice of that chocolate lava cake. Huzzah.

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