Food & Drink » Food Review

Rembrandts Coffee House

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As this section is aptly named "Food," you, dear readers, should expect that the words contained herein provide adequate discourse regarding the edible fare at Rembrandts. However, to opine solely on Rembrandts food would be far too myopic a representation of an establishment that strives to create something beyond a quintessential coffeehouse. In fact, though coffee and food may be the headlining attractions at Rembrandts, neither are the most notable aspects of the business. With Drop Leaf Gallery, a modest selection of family oriented books and extensive involvement with the Landing Community Center, Rembrandts substantiates its commitment to the community and to artistic endeavors, one cup a joe at a time.

Since its opening in late 2004, many a Boise Weekly story has been composed beneath my byline from the shade of the patio's sprawling umbrellas. For many months, I biked to Rembrandts six days a week to sip early morning coffee, and before moving back into the '02, I often patronized Rembrandts more than once a day. In fact, my accolades of Rembrandts garnered it a humble editorial Best of Boise award in 2005's edition.

Hardly the unbiased and hard-nosed journalist concerning my opinion of the coffee house, I thought it best to counterweigh my praise with a more critical eye. Several months ago—after having been attacked by a very hot cup of tea that fell out of its holder while she was sipping—my mother began a personal boycott of what was once her favorite afternoon haunt. For the sake of fair and balanced reporting, she returned with me.

Already familiar with Rembrandts breakfast and lunch, my mother and I ventured in for an early dinner. The evening's menu offered lasagna, beef and barley soup, and chicken noodle soup. Because it's not often that one can ask for one of everything on the menu, we took the opportunity to do so and added a salad, an iced tea and a hot pressed tea to our list of requests.

After enjoying two cups of homemade soup, a fresh salad so big it really needed to be on a larger plate and a portion of single-layer lasagna, the most negative observation we could make was that the soups were a bit salty and only lukewarm. Like the menu, dinner was simple and straightforward. As we lingered for some time over our dirty dishes, I was disappointed by the staff's aloofness that evening. Dishes cluttered every empty table in the dining room and while mulling over dessert options, I remembered days when the empty display case was a veritable trove of sinful delights. Food aside, it's clear that Rembrandts has wedged itself into a unique community niche and is achieving something more aesthetic and sincere than simply providing a caffeine fix.

—Rachael Daigle can provide a brief justification for the illogical necessity of modern man's existential dilemma.

93 S. Eagle Rd., 938-1372, Mon-Thu: 6 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri-Sat: 6 a.m.-11 p.m.