By Kelly Vaughn Kramer | Photo by John Wagner
There's plenty about Bisbee to make your heart spin: winding roads, historic charm and just enough quirk to jump-start your creative juices. Then, there's the cherry-almond bread pudding you'll find at High Desert Market and Café.
It's the type of dessert you'd love to call your own — a culinary invention so fine, you might be tempted to trade your firstborn or a minor body part for the recipe. Or just buy it in bulk and serve it on pretty plates with fancy doilies and a bon appétit à la Julia Child. Layered with almond slivers and semi-tart cherries, the brick-sized treat should be eaten in phases or with a handful of friends, and it's just one of the amazing menu items at High Desert.
Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, the market keeps its offerings simple, sticking to simple sandwiches and a slew of creative salads. A selection of savories rounds out the menu, along with nightly dinner specials and a variety of fresh, homemade pastries. But the market's allure also is its ambience.
Nuzzled against the hillside along Tombstone Canyon Road, the market serves as a community gathering space. It's the place local vicars can go to counsel congregants on a random Thursday afternoon, and it's the place where an artist lingers with his sketchpad. Patrons gather in the airy, goldpoppy-colored sunroom or on the market's spacious patio and talk across tables with friendly small-town familiarity.
Maybe it's that ease that keeps the management so cool. You're allowed to linger over your meal, rather than paying at the counter as soon as you order. No receipts. No order slips. No demands to hand over your Visa. Just visit the register when you've finished eating and tell the cashier what you had. The system affords you the opportunity to peruse the market's selection of local and imported treats, from honey-based soaps to European cheeses, and soak in a bit of the local flavor.
High Desert Market and Café does it right. The proof is in the pudding.
High Desert Market and Café is located at 203 Tombstone Canyon Road in Bisbee. For more information, call 502-432-6775 or visit www.highdesertmarket.net.