Scarlet’s Bakery, a study in doing good

For those few of you counting on me to tip you off when a restaurant is safe for vegetarians, let me hasten to say that Scarlet’s has both vegan and ovo-lacto offerings.

This grilled egg sandwich kept me going until 4 PM.

The Waldorf salad looks vegan safe. My egg sandwich was filling.

The food is a little uninspired, but the coffee is decent. Prices are comparable to Panera. And, at the end of the day, the service is about as enthusiastic.

The important difference between Panera and Scarlet’s is that, when you patronize Panera, you are throwing your money at a heartless, money grubbing corporation. When you spend money at Scarlet’s, you are supporting a mission.

Scarlet’s provides job training and opportunities to women for whom the range of options has narrowed.

The interior is gorgeous.

I’ve come to believe that every woman carries some baggage. Regardless of race, sexuality, education, wealth, etc., many of us are an inch or less away from having to throw ourselves on the mercy of a women’s charity.

So if my server wanders off to do something unrelated to making my sandwich when I’m the only customer, I try to remember that empowering women is a slow endeavor, with lots of false starts and real setbacks.

And I try to remember that, if I’m not yet desperate, it’s thanks to a working husband and Medicare.

Medicare, because it pays the bulk of the $50,000 a year pharmacy bill for meds that keep me alive.

And I’m a little emotional about Scarlet’s because they moved into my Shelby Park neighborhood just as other nearby businesses were throwing in the towel.

And at a time when city budget cuts probably mean my neighborhood will be getting less police protection than neighborhoods with a higher tax base.

So, please buy some coffee at Scarlet’s.

Shelby and Oak

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