Tim and Michelle Wunderlich, owners of Seaside Coffee Roasters, outside their downtown location.
Credit to coastweekend.com, Matt Love author, June 2016, The Daily Astorian
I walked into Seaside Coffee House on a gray Thursday afternoon and Michelle Wunderlich, the owner, didn’t waste any time greeting me warmly like the semi-regular I am.
My order was the same: the angst-ridden writer special — black coffee in a white mug.
After handing me my mug, Michelle launched into a wonderful story about her teenage daughter, an obsessive reader, who recently exhibited signs of impressive writing ability by cranking out a dystopian tale that caught the attention of her teacher. Perhaps that teacher’s attention will light a fire in Michelle’s daughter to become a writer. It can happen that way. It did for me at 16 when one of my teachers noticed.
What a lucky kid! She can hang out in her mom’s café all day and write her dystopian novel series and coffee is eternally free! My advice: set the series in Seaside after global warming has caused sea levels to rise and all the tourists have disappeared. Maybe have the surfers running everything. No zombies please.
The Seaside Coffee House boasts one of the most delightfully eclectic interiors of any coffee joint I’ve ever patronized. It acts as a de facto art gallery for local artists, a quasi museum of vintage bicycles and toy wagons, a library with books, magazines and old Seaside High School yearbooks, and a groovy time warp back into the 1970s when potted and hanging plants were the decorative rage.
What I particularly enjoy about this place is that a customer has an astonishing array of choices of how they want to sit: couch, stool at window counter, student desk, plush chairs or plain old wooden chair at a table. My preference is typically wood seating at a table where I can look out the window and watch people come and go.
On my most recent visit, I saw an elderly bald man wearing camouflage shorts. His head was covered in a green and orange tattoo of the most intricate design. He seemed very much like a possible character in a dystopian novel set in Seaside. I bet Michelle’s daughter is already on it.
Matt Love is the author/editor of 14 books, including “A Nice Piece of Astoria.” His books are available at coastal bookstores or through his website, nestuccaspitpress.com