Why: Scott Flury drove by the 110-year-old house for sale on busy 39th Street in his Vancouver neighborhood every day.
A vision began forming in his mind. He imagined a homey spot where people could gather for coffee in the morning, wine in the evening and light fare all day long. In June, he realized that dream and opened Latte Da Coffee House and Wine Bar in the spot he had eyed for so long.
Atmosphere: A walk-up counter sits at one end of the house and a cozy fireplace on the other. Flury took care to honor the charm of the vintage house when he updated it to accommodate the café.
Customers can choose a meeting room, one of the small tables, or a couch. Those in a hurry can walk up to a window outside to place their order and then be on their way. In nice weather, customers can linger outside on a patio appointed with teak furniture.
What I tried: Latte Da prepares sandwiches on site, but rounds out its menu with baked goods from the Village Pearl Bake Shop in downtown Vancouver.
We began our lunch with two chicken skewers — all breast meat, tender and moist — bathed in a spicy peanut sauce.
My husband gobbled down a roast beef sandwich on sourdough bread. (Flury said he has tried to stock his café with items from local vendors, among them Sunrise Bagels, which provides the sourdough bread. The meat he purchases wholesale.) The lettuce and tomato on the sandwich were fresh, and the beef tender, resulting in a satisfying if typical deli sandwich.
I tried the ham-and-cheese quiche, baked at the Village Pearl and warmed at Latte Da. It arrived golden brown, with no distinguishable crust, and loaded with sharp white cheese.
Given the name of the café, we couldn’t leave without trying a latte or another of the espresso drinks, which are made with Bridgetown Coffee. The pumpkin spice latte tasted sweet and snappy.
Highlights beyond what I tried: Latte Da offers happy hour discounts from 4 to 6 p.m. daily, when $5 will get you a glass of wine or The Mediterranean Experience, which includes two stuffed grape leaves, stuffed olives, roasted red peppers, hummus and feta.
Cost: Items ring up at less than $8.
Hours: 5:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturdays, and 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays.
Where: 205 E. 39th St., Vancouver.
Health score: Latte Da Coffee House and Wine Bar received a perfect score of zero on Sept. 20. Clark County Public Health closes restaurants that score 100 or higher. For information, call 360-397-8428.