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Birdie’s Bistro

3860 River Road N

Keizer, OR

Traveled down to Salem to experience hordes of tubas, sousaphones, French horns, euphoniums, and other pontificating or grunting—smooth as molasses—brass instruments. Time for a coffee shop afterwards! Because the theater had been so old and regal, built with balconies and staircases, art deco and gold gilding, columns and fancy sconces, we decided an “old-fashioned” coffee house was in order. Hence, Steam Heat was selected. This turned out to be non-existent, sold and renamed without telling Google, and had become Birdie’s Bistro. Not a quaint old place but a new glassy one, despite its original name suggesting clunky radiators. It was Birdie’s Bistro for us anyway, at least here in Keizer (just N of Salem proper).

The shop’s fireplace still radiated heat even though the gas was shut off, and couches for relaxing were adjacent to it, placed nicely upon a hooked rug. Plain tables filled the rest of the room, but the walls were brightened with bird drawings: line and silhouette-style. As in “Put a bird on it”. Talk about Portlandia creep! At least two pretend birdcages, with fake birdies inside, decorated the walls. A large patio outside with  metal tables (easily seen because of all the windows) might have been quite nice had it not been snarly December weather.

Fare: Good, but expensive.  Possibility of day-olds, but not this time. Although they were within minutes of closing before a major holiday, they had no intention of reducing the price of the baked-goods, not even of one delicious-looking, tempting, mouth-watering pecan roll, priced at nearly $4. Not even for Christmas!  Alas, my mission is to review coffee shops, not go broke patronizing them. Hence, I had no pastry. What I sometimes need is some kind of sponsor, or sugar-daddy.  My companion had a tasty hot chocolate for $2, I believe.

Service and clientele:  We were the sole clientele. Two workers were busily shutting down and chatting. Service was average. They needed to get home, and so did we.

Rating:  2.5-3.0 coffee beans (of 5 possible)

2 coffee beans

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