Mother/Son momentum propels Spanish Fort Cafe to expansion

mitchmurphyCheryl’s Cafe has been part of the Spanish Fort scene since December of 1998. When Cheryl Barnes first started her business the menu consisted of soups, salads, sandwiches complimented by one hot daily lunch special. As the cozy cafe gained momentum in the community, customers began to request more of the warm, comfort-type foods.

Their chalkboard menu now is host to at least four daily entrees with a large selection of veggies and side items from which to choose in addition to a soup or two and a couple of feature salads. They also have a menu of specialty sandwiches that include a Monte Cristo, Rueben, Turkey Avocado and their signature Chicken Salad – just to name a few.  And don’t forget dessert! All are homemade and the Banana pudding and Dream pie are always available in addition to a few others that rotate.

Cheryl’s son, Mitch Murphy, joined the operation on a full time basis in 2009. Since then, he has taken over the daily kitchen responsibilities allowing Cheryl to concentrate efforts on catering. Mitch prides himself on the prompt expedition of product and friendly customer service. They also take the extra time and effort to procure all the meats, produce and other ingredients that are used in their kitchen. “I run myself ragged, but I’m not going to serve anything that I would not eat” says Barnes. Needless to say, it has paid off. They start serving at 11am and stay busy until they close at 2:30pm. The menu is posted daily on their Facebook page. They added outside seating to better accommodate all of their patrons and before years end an expansion will be underway. An additional 600 square feet will be added to the existing structure to give them a little more room to grow their business and allow for more seating and kitchen space.  Stop by Monday through Friday and experience some spectacular Southern goodness from Cheryl’s Cafe.

Cheryl’s Cafe, 6580 Spanish Fort Blvd, Spanish Fort • (251) 626-2602 • Facebook “Cheryl’s Cafe”

Fairhope’s Bean & Bistro celebrates two years

TeriDaysTerri Days is happy to celebrating her second year as the sole proprietor of The Bean & Bistro. Her counseling career combined with years of sales experience and service in the food and beverage industry equipped her with just the right skills to serve with the public. After procuring all that training she finally decided that if she was going to work as hard as she had been working for other people in past years, she was determined to work that hard for herself. Terri happened to find her opportunity and for the past two years has dedicated herself to her business, The Bean & Bistro. This coffee shop in Fairhope is located behind Pizza Hut, nestled between Fairhope Music and Southern Edge Dance Studio. It’s a little off the main road but well worth the venture. You can relax in this cozy environment, complete with free wi-fi or even make use of the back room for meetings, parties, luncheons, etc.
She serves organic Costa Rican coffee freshly brewed in various roasts. Iced coffee, espresso and coffee alternative are also available along with smoothies, flavored iced teas, lemonade and even protein shakes. Breakfast items and bagels are available. And sandwiches can be made as a panini, wrap, croissant or bagel. Your choice of turkey, ham or cajun roast beef with swiss cheddar or bleu cheese with spinach, tomato and red onion. Other options include a muffaletta or veggie wrap. Try your sandwich with Terri’s soup of the day or some homemade salsa anch chips or the house hummus. Terri touts that the menu is merely a suggestion and she loves a challenge. Within the last year Terri – by customer request – has been preparing weekly specials that can be pre-ordered for take home meals. She will be more than happy to email you the weekly list of what’s available. Just email her at to be added to the list. Terri has also been busy catering off site and special events – which is also an option to keep in mind!
You can also find eats & treats from the Bean & Bistro during Wednesday Trivia Night at The Fairhope Brewery and when the brewery hosts live music. Hours for The Bean & Bistro are Monday through Thursday from 7:15am until 5:30pm and Friday from 7:15am until 2pm. Although the establishment is closed on Saturdays and Sundays, The Bean & Bistro is available for private events and catering.  The Bean & Bistro, 249 Greeno Road South, Fairhope (251) 929-1400 • Facebook “The Bean & Bistro”

Kathy Buckson has been “Catering To You” for 20 years

Kathy BA favor for a friend sparked Kathy Buckson’s entrance into the catering industry roughly 20 years ago. Kathy was catering a friend’s wedding at the Lake Forest Yacht Club when the manager asked her if she would be interested in catering other weddings and private events. She gave it some consideration and shortly after that became the exclusive caterer for the club. In 1993, she rented the front portion of her present location and set up a catering kitchen. While she was busy prepping for jobs, quite often people would pop in and ask if she was open to the public. That was inspiration enough for Kathy’s husband to present her with a meat slicer and the suggestion that she entertain the idea of offering lunch. The very next week she opened her kitchen to the public and started doing just that! Kathy’s small business, CATERING TO YOU, soon grew and when more space in the building became available, she expanded and added tables and chairs to provide her customers with a larger dining area. Kathy gives credit to her mother for instilling her love for cooking. “She made everything fun – nothing was a chore. She was a wonderful entertainer and everything she prepared always looked nice.” remembers Buckson. Kathy’s signature chicken salad is her mother’s recipe. Catering To You presents a menu of sixteen specialty sandwiches that include a club, reuben, turkey & cranberry, muffaletta, tuna melt. You can also design your own deli sandwich from a list of meats and cheeses served on your choice of bread – white, wheat, rye, pumpernickle or croissant. Meal size salads featured are the Greek Salad, Chef’s Salad or a Triple Salad Plate with your choice of chicken or tuna salad and two sides. A fresh soup, a hot lunch special and tempting desserts are also daily options. Catering To You is open Monday through Friday from 11am until 2pm. If you are in a rush, just phone your order in the staff will have it ready for you at your convenience. The facility is also available by reservation for private functions on weekends, afternoons or evenings. Catering To You, 28623 North Main Street, Daphne (251) 626-1744 • Facebook “Catering To You”