We were in Olympia for the weekend because we love to explore and I had never been to our state's capitol. Also, we had read about a Taco Truck and to be perfectly honest that was the primary motivator of the trip. There are a lot of malls and chain stores in Olympia; at every turn I saw another Starbucks. Mud Bay Coffee is in a small strip mall but as soon as I walked in I felt more calm.
The walls are a nice green and there is a lovely little case of delicious looking pastries beckoning you to the counter. There are signs directing proper refuse disposal for compostables and recyclables. I peered into the pastry case trying to determine if the pastries were as good as they looked. I order a latte, a frosted cookie, a chocolate chip cookie and a bag of beans. The man helping me looked like a throwback to the grunge era of the 90s and was friendly without being overly so. He is a barista after all, those perky Starbucks Baristas should give you the first clue that you are not about to get a good cup of espresso.
I asked where the pastries came from and was told Main Street Cookie Company and San Francisco Street Bakery. They are both names that I recognized from looking online at the local eateries. I knew they had good reputations and the reviews were right, the cookies were great. Soft and thick and chewy with still firm but slightly softened chocolate chips. Their lattes are creamy steamed milk infiltrated with wonderful tasting espresso. It stood up to my ridiculously high coffee standards. I have thrown full lattes and drip coffees into the trash because they have that burnt or bitter coffee taste. I hate bad espresso. Since it was almost Valentine's Day the barista took an extra moment trying to add a few hearts to the top of my latte but they were a little abstract. The other barista came over and peered in and they both commented on the failed art but the latte was not a failed attempt; it was a really great latte. And the beans we brought home have been giving us great drip all week.