My girlfriend Rosalie was free this morning, so I invited her to HMB Coffee for a few indulgences. I like to make a trip out to the coffee house/bakery/bistro at least once a month to get my fix on the freshly baked pumpkin bread. Today was an even bigger treat having my friend along, and I was looking forward to catching up with her while sipping a latte. Also, I can rely on her to cut me off when I’ve had one too many pumpkin bread slices.
For a weekday morning, HMB Coffee was bustling, and a line had formed almost out the door. There seemed to be an inordinate amount of teenagers with parents, and I realized that spring break had already started for some schools. Teenagers in college sweatshirts were everywhere. Never mind finding a seat, pumpkin bread was at a premium. Standing on line while eyeing the solitary pumpkin bread on the counter brought back memories of when I was an exchange student and living in Moscow for a month. I remember the long lines that would form at the government run markets, and people would shout at the workers so they could claim their black bread before it all quickly ran out. As if reading my mind, Rosalie grabbed my arm to make sure I wasn’t cutting anyone in line.
Due to my friend’s good manners, this is what greeted me when I finally reached the counter.
My stomach sank, but the friendly face behind the counter quickly steered me to another baked deliciousness. “Chocolate Cloud,” he mouthed. “Chocolate Cloud,” I ordered. “And of course, a latte and I’ll take the pumpkin cookie.” Feeling satisfied for having the grand luck of getting the last pumpkin cookie, I was no longer disappointed by the bread debacle.
Even though the place was brimming with activity, the friendly faced man(I wish I got his name) brought our order to our table. The name did it justice. Chocolate Cloud: layers of pillowy cream, chocolate mousse, denser cream(hint of mascarpone?) on top of a buttery short bread. It was hard not to eat the entire thing in a few spoonfuls. Like its name suggested, it truly was airy and decadent. Rosalie’s pumpkin cookie was wonderful too. The pumpkin cookie was just as moist and savory as its over achieving sister, the pumpkin bread. And as usual, the latte was sublime.