A new cafe will be arriving at Village Books this summer, adding a bit of sweetness to the book-buying experience.
Evolve Chocolate owners Christy Fox and Shannon Fox have reached an agreement to take over the former Book Fare Cafe space on the third floor of the Village Books building, overlooking the Village Green and Bellingham Bay.
They plan to have Evolve Chocolate + Cafe open this summer, possibly as soon as June, said Christy Fox. The goal is to maintain some of the things Book Fare offered like pastries and light lunch items, but add to it. The menu will have an array of sweets, sips and savories, she said, adding that it will be open the same hours as the bookstore at 1200 11th St.
It turned out to be a situation of perfect timely for Evolve. The chocolate company has done well as a Bellingham Farmers Market vendor and a pop-up store. The owners were ready for a permanent brick-and-mortar location and in their research liked the business model of Village Books. Christy Fox said they especially liked the free-flow option the bookstore had with nearby businesses, including Paper Dreams and Drizzle. They wanted to find something like that for their cafe.
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"We were humbled to have Village Books approach us (with taking over the Book Fare space)," Christy Fox said. "We're super-excited to be bringing this to Bellingham."
They plan to continue at the Bellingham Farmers Market and will rely on it when shopping for ingredients for their menu. Christy Fox said the Farmer's Market was instrumental in their business success and they want to continue supporting it.
As for the menu, expect to see items like sandwiches and soups. Christy Fox said they are working on a Dungeness crab macaroni and cheese dish they hope will be popular. They are also applying for a state liquor license to make cocktails. Coffee will come from Bellingham Coffee Roasters. Evolve Chocolate truffles will also be available.
The owners of Village Books are on board with the idea as well.
"When we heard Shannon and Christy's plans for the space and read their proposed menu, it confirmed they are absolutely the right fit," said Village Books co-owner Kelly Evert. "They are designing an experience that will encourage community, celebrate local food and create memories."