After a busy weekend theme park-ing with my dad and immersing myself in all things the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, I was looking forward to a change of pace with my aunt coming down.
Both tired after a busy weekend and feeling uninspired by our barren fridge, I decided to propose lunch at a cafe near downtown Orlando that I’ve been wanting to do for a while: Bikes Beans and Bordeaux. This neighborhood cafe does indeed feature bikes (the pedal-pushing kind), beans (of coffee variety), and bordeaux (no explanation required) as well as a wonderfully lengthy and diverse menu spanning breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
I was first introduced to Bikes Beans and Bordeaux (B3 Cafe) by Kathy, the masterful baker behind Heartsong Cookies. Her cookies are featured among the baked goods offered at B3. On the day I went however, I did not spot any of her gluten-free or vegan varieties.
Overwhelmed by the expansive menu, I couldn’t decide what precisely I was hungry for. I started eyeing the B3 combo which allows you to craft a dish of two of the following: a half sandwich, half salad, bowl of soup or personal sized quiche (NOT gluten-free). My aunt decided to order a bowl of their soup of the day (black bean soup which is gluten/dairy free) and a greek salad, so I decided to go with the half Tyler turkey sandwich and half Alp de Huez salad minus croutons and cheese. The sandwich came with turkey and my choice of toppings so I went with tomato, sprouts, onions, brown mustard.
I emailed the cafe before dining and was informed that they use Udi’s gluten-free bread as their sandwich base. When preparing a gluten-free sandwich, they wash hands, change gloves, use a clean knife and cutting board, and use aluminum foil to create a barrier that blocks cross contamination when using the panini press or oven. It was really reassuring to know ahead of time that B3 not only offered gluten-free fare but had the gluten-free street smarts to deliver it safely to their intolerant, allergic, and celiac customers.
When our food arrived, I was impressed with the visually beautiful presentation of the plate. Each meal came with a mini pack of Jelly Belly jelly beans which are gluten-free, dairy-free, peanut-free, gelatin-free, fat free and vegetarian friendly.
My sandwich was perfectly portioned as the Udi’s sandwich bread is larger than their grocery store variety and tasty untoasted as it was fluffy and light. The turkey was roasted and had a nice, juicy flavor and the accompanying veggies were fresh distinctly fresh.
The salad, too, was noticeably fresh and light as the assorted veggies were perfectly paired and only enhanced by the simply delicious balsamic vinaigrette dressing that came on the side. The pairing of the soup and sandwich was practically perfect and left me feeling refreshed.
The real star of the meal though was my aunt’s black bean soup that I had a few spoonfuls of. Gluten-free and vegan minus the sour cream and/or cheddar cheese topping, the soup was enhanced by diced red onions. Without a doubt, this soup was one of the best black bean renditions I’ve ever had. Equaling, and quite possibly surpassing, my favorite black bean soup in town from Black Bean Deli– and that’s setting the bar really high! I made sure to order a bowl of this soup to-go before leaving and it made for a perfect dinner that night as torrential rain left me wanting some comfort food.
Overall, I B3 proved to be a great find as they combined a great local atmosphere with great, fresh food. My aunt really appreciated and got a kick out of the cyclist-themed decor and references about the cafe. I would definitely go back for breakfast or lunch and hope to try out one of their coffee creations with almond milk as I so rarely get a coffeehouse experience.
Cuisine: Salads, sandwiches, soups, breakfast, beers (gluten-free), wines, coffee-based creations
Price: See this pdf menu for prices
Accessibility: Easily wheelchair accessible
Special Features: Delivery can be ordered through Doorstep Delivery here.
Disclaimer: Restaurant reviews are based upon the information I have at the time of the review and do not reflect changes in ingredients or availability of items. Please contact the restaurant directly for up-to-date information and feel free to to contact me with any questions or comments. I was not compensated for this review and it is a reflection of my personal opinion.