Shawn’s Cafe & Bakery

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Baked goods at Shawn’s Cafe & Bakery on left; outdoor seating on right

Perhaps being the smallest eatery on the island isn’t necessarily a sought-after distinction. But for this tiny corner of a bakery, it works perfectly. The bakery-cafe provides just enough room for people to come in, order a sandwich and an espresso, sit for a second at one of the two tables, and then head out. In nice weather, a small patio outside more than doubles the seating area, though the office-building corner location isn’t fancy.

What is worth noting, is the food. The tiny one-man shop manages to turn out a menu full of tasty sandwiches, soups, and baked goods while making exceptional coffee and hot chocolate. The most celebrated of the shop’s baked goods is the pretzel roll – a moist, delightfully chewy roll covered in a sprinkling of salt. With a pat of butter or an order of the mustard dipping sauce, it becomes pretty much the quintessential mid-afternoon snack.

But if you’re looking for a more full meal, the menu holds a pile of panini that goes beyond the standard. Sure, there’s ham or turkey with swiss (a steal at just $5.99) and a sausage, egg, and cheese for the breakfast crowd, but there’s also fig jam with goat cheese and prosciutto, and a Reuben with corned beef, swiss, sauerkraut, and thousand island dressing. Warm soups, like the lentil with bacon work well in the winter, and the chocolate chip cookie is the star of a summer afternoon.

Shawn’s Cafe & Bakery is located at 7420 SE 24th St. Learn more at

Written by Naomi Tomky