Things I Love in Bellingham This Week

Jessica Tholmer loves Bellingham. She also loves writing (and is damn good at it). We now present her column about what she loves in Bellingham, aptly titled “Things I Love in Bellingham This Week.”

Bellingham is the kind of town that has so much and so little going on, basically 100% of the time. Sure, we get the naysayers that say there isn’t “that much to do” in Bellingham, which can be semi-accurate. In my opinion, even when there is “not that much to do,” you can always decide to grab a book and explore any number of big or small coffee shops. Or go eat at a number of fine dining establishments. Or, you know what? You can go see a movie either at the wonderful little Pickford Theater, or dare I say it, you can venture all the way out to the mall and see the blockbuster everyone else in the country has been talking about. There is always something going on. And I am going to tell you who, what and where I am enjoying in this column.

  1. Clover® brewed coffee
    Perhaps I should not start off talking about Starbucks because I know the stigma that many Bellingham residents (and America residents) have toward the mega coffee company. Here’s the thing: Starbucks isn’t all that bad. I don’t mind if you prefer the coffee at the Black Drop or wherever you choose to spend too much money on steamed milk and espresso shots, but Starbucks has to have some credit for the exposure of coffee culture in our country. And yes, Bellingham is close enough to Seattle to have a caffeinated reputation like the big city. That all being said, if you have never tried Clover® brewed coffee, it is worth a trip to your local downtown Starbucks to try it out. The Clover® machine is an original, new-ish way of brewing coffee combining vacuum-press technology (like, in coffee, not how you clean your house) and French pressin’. Your cup is brewed per region, which makes it an extra thoughtful (and caffeinated) cup of coffee. Plus, say what you will, but Starbucks has enough options in whole bean coffee that you can and definitely will find something you love.
  2. Cheese Meat(s) Beer
    I have a secret: there is a delicious and adorable and pretty close to perfect little restaurant located inside Whatcom Museum’s Lightcatcher building. The restaurant was opened by Travis Surmi and Annalou Vincent, a couple passionate about the only things worth being passionate about: food and beer. Do I need to go on? There is a killer beer selection (or wine or hard cider), a semi-rotating menu (which you can check the blog to find out what today’s options are) and fun events like live music and bike of the month. I had not consumed a cheeseburger in four and a half years, and when I finally couldn’t shake my craving anymore, a dear friend and I decided to check out this quaint little eatery. Best decision of my life. I’m no fool: I know the burger at Cheese Meat(s) Beer was exceptional. Worth the wait. Check it out, guys!
  3. Heatwave
    It’s funny that we complain about the weather as often as we do here in the PNDub–or I guess here in the World, ’cause I have a feeling that everyone complains about everything all of the time. I’ll play both sides of the argument: it has been hot in Bellingham the last week, even if the weather reports are like, “nah, only 60 degrees out,” the humidity has been high and my apartment has like, direct sunlight through all the windows. We are lucky to have some summer lovin’ though, guys, because soon it will be rainy everyday and we’ll be popping multiple vitamin D pills to stay happy.  That diplomacy being said, however, I hate this heat and I happily rip little rings off of my “soon to be fall” chain I made (kidding, kinda) because I don’t like being hot. I like scarves and peacoats and rain boots. Enjoy it, though. We live in a lovely place, hot or cold, sweaty or drenched. Love the skin you’re in or whatever.
  4.  Foam parties
    You know what sounds disgusting? Dancing waist deep in a bunch of thick, soapy bubbles with scantily clad drunk people. Wait, does that sound disgusting?  People love it there! Last summer, I accidentally went (it was too late by the time we committed to dancing that night! No turning back!) and it was mostly disgusting, but pretty fun. My girlfriends had a blast, and a lifelong story. Someone literally stole the shirt off of my boyfriend’s back and I think I ruined my shoes. I cannot wait to tell my children about this one day, and for that reason alone, you should check it out. Keep up to date on the Rumors Cabaret calendar!
  5. HomeSkillet
    Everyone in Bellingham has (or should have) their breakfast loyalties. I won’t tell you mine just yet (though if you know me IRL, you totally know what it is), but I allow myself some exploration when newer breakfast places come to town. 521 Kentucky Street is not exactly the place you would expect to find delicious food, but guys! You can find delicious food there. I promise. The restaurant claims to serve “comfort food,” and to be honest, I felt quite comforted there. In fact, the whole time I was inside, I kept thinking, this place could be in Seattle! And as a Seattleite, I appreciate the little-but-big-but-really-little hometown feel. The décor is fun, the people are great and most importantly, the mimosas are strong. Do you really need another excuse to check it out? Don’t forget—breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Or second breakfast. Go for both.