The hit coffee shop Java Bay from L’Anse has found another home in the Third Street Village but would it be able to compete in the ever expanding Marquette coffee market? Marquette Social Scene gave them a try to find out.
We went on Friday, July 3, just after the lunch rush and had the special of the day: a turkey and cheese half-sandwich and a cup of soup for $7.95.
The sandwich had a good taste with fresh ingredients and satisfying cold cuts. A while back that would be a big advantage, but not in the middle of Marquette’s farm-to-table movement where everything is marketed as fresh as can be. The marble rye was a great touch, untoasted to get a bigger grip on the huge size of the half sandwich.
Gotten with the works of lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle and mild peppers with mayo and brown mustard, this turkey and cheese was an awesome break from the half sandwiches that are flatter than a candy bar. The owner was working at the time and when I told him how pleasantly surprised I was about the size of the sandwich, he said that Java Bay “wasn’t going to give a sandwiches that didn’t have anything to them.” It’s the reasonably sized option that goes above and beyond.
The tomato Florentine soup as well was solid. I’m typically iffy on my soups but this was a pleasant combo for a hot day with the pasta, celery, greens and onions in a tomato base.
At the suggestion of the worker at the counter, I tried the Andes’ mocha. It started off with a taste of chocolate and finished with a refreshing mint flavor, like you would expect when eating the candies its named for. It was smooth, the right temperature for a dessert coffee drink and reasonably priced for a 16-ounce at $4.55.
The rusty orange and tan walls aren’t a throwback to the previous tenants but rather a rustic motif that matches the stone laminate floor, wood tables and black chairs that are becoming all too common of a style in Marquette. They put a door that leads directly outside, so you don’t have to go through the Quick Stop Bike Shop to enter, but there’s still an awkward window that lets you see into the store. The chalkboard is still up, so that is a nice place for kids to have fun and lets customers give input on the place.
When the shop opens at 7:30 a.m., breakfast is served. Omelets, sandwiches and combination platters are available. There is fountain Pepsi products available and wifi. Gluten free options are on the way and the drinks are already including soy and almond milk.
Overall, Java Bay is a great addition to the Third Street Village with their flavor, portions and value, but it is clear that this is going to have to be the last Northern-rustic, farm-fresh anything if they all want to survive in the area. Congrats and welcome to Marquette.