Little Jo Berry’s @ 1305 Wellington St West, Ottawa, ON
Now that I’ve mentioned SBB, I must introduce Little Jo Berry’s, too; otherwise, my heart will break, because this newly opened local vegan cafe/bakery is my all-time favourite go-to spot for an afternoon coffee and treat, and I think it deserves all the love in the world.
Inviting and cute-as-a-button, this charming shop looks, feels, and tastes like home sweet home. With classic comfort treats like pop tarts and twinkies (even the names are music to my ears) baked with a vegan twist, I mean, how stinkin’ magical. Whenever I come here, I always feel as if I’m coming home to Grandma’s for baked goodies and hugs.
(Psst, SBB and Little Jo Berry’s are only a two-minute walk from each other, and they’re pals!)
The first time I visited Little Jo Berry’s, I encountered my twin flame. No, it wasn’t a karmic or a soulmate connection; it was a twin flame connection. Not with a human being either, but with a food item. Friends, I met the oh-so-sweet, divine love of mine: the matcha green tea scone.
I’m weak in the knees for scones and green tea desserts, and when the two dance the bachata together, golly gee, do I ever feel the electric current sizzling down my spine. Suffice it to say, that matcha scone was the best scone I’d ever had in my twenty-five years of je ne sais quoi existence — and it was vegan, too. Matcha or not, whatever the flavour, their scones are ace.
And the owner, Jo? Besides the fact that she’s a versatile and talented baker, a gift from the gods of glutton, she’s supah awesome and darn adorable. Picture a little lady with dorky glasses, snazzy blue hair, a museum of funky tattoos, and a cheerful and expressive nature that could magically transform your insipid ol’ day into a sweet lullaby. I really think there ought to be a cartoon character of her, because if you’ve met her, you’d know what I mean. Her cute game is real.
I wasn’t craving anything sweet today, but I decided to return to my happy place anyway, and finally try Jo’s infamous pop tart and twinkie (these call for three thumbs up). Of course being here solidified that communal and homey feeling; besides sharing some exciting news with Jo, I also engaged in a brief exchange with a fellow customer about, of all things, PB. Who would’ve known it was PB day?
“Eat PB today,” she reminded me and smiled as I walked out the door.
And so I knew.