by Rebecca M. Alvin
Something has changed at The Purple Feather Café & Treatery this year. It happened late in the summer and it may have escaped your notice, but the Purple Feather has undergone a shift. While it still offers an incredible array of decadent chocolate desserts, great coffee, and delicious gelato, the recent addition of wine, beer, and liqueurs to their offerings has expanded their menu beyond a dessert café and into a casual eatery with unique chocolate and wine pairings and other sophisticated, yet fun menu items, alongside lunchtime favorites.
It’s not easy to go from a popular coffee spot to a place for sit-down lunches and casual dinners, but owners Ann and Peter Okun have managed to make the shift without losing any of the appeal their café has always had. As Peter Okun puts it, it’s all about “making people happy.”
For some time now they have offered warm panini sandwiches and soups to warm the soul on chilly autumn afternoons. The special soup when we visited was a comforting Hungarian mushroom, but New England clam chowder is always on the menu as well. Sandwiches range from Peter’s Pastrami to a tuna salad option called Fisherman’s Wharf and the vegan Bike Path, featuring lettuce, tomato, onion, sweet hot peppers, and guacamole.
Recently, Peter Okun, says, the Café has introduced some dishes inspired by their Jamaican cooking staff, such as the Pulled Chicken Barbecue, featuring meaty chicken marinated in an earthy jerk barbecue sauce with no added sugars. And Ann Okun’s own homemade baked mac & cheese (available with or without lobster) is also a real treat, featuring a blend of four cheeses and a crunchy baked topping. It has a buttery flavor that will satisfy your craving for comfort food without being drenched in decadence. It’s a really nice balance.
The addition of the alcohol license gave the Purple Feather the ability not only to offer beer and wine with your meal, but also to experiment with liqueurs, wine, and cordials that complement their rich dessert offerings, and to make martinis. The Ginger Martini is a great option for a before-dinner cocktail. The scent of ginger meets you as you life the glass. It features Domain de Canton ginger liqueur, Sky Citrus vodka, and a hint of cranberry, garnished with ginger and dried cranberries,
Another option is their playful twist on the popular Sex on the Beach drink. This martini is made with Grand Marnier, Chambord, peach Schnapps, and Sky Citrus vodka, garnished with the Feather’s famous Sex on the Beach truffle, and served in a glass rimmed with white chocolate.
If you’re looking for something a bit more decadent after dinner, try the Ultimate Caramel Latte featuring a robust two-shot latte with Godiva caramel liqueur and topped with whipped cream. The inner child in you will love the Nitro Milk Stout Float, which Peter Okun describes as “a root beer float except it’s with a real beer.”
But one of the most interesting aspects of the new menu is its selection of chocolate, dessert, and wine pairings. The Dark Side pairs Dow’s 10-year-old Tawny port wine from Portugal with a Double Decadence truffle (70% cacao), and a pomegranate dark chocolate truffle, making a truly intense flavor profile. The flavor of the port is complex, with warm, spicy notes that combine very well with dark chocolate.
Another delicious choice is the Chambord & Panna Cotta featuring a rich, creamy panna cotta served in a Belgian-chocolate cup, served with raspberry liqueur. While their menu of selections are sure to please, the more adventurous chocolate lover can create their own pairings, so let your experimental side go wild.
The Purple Feather Café and Treatery is located at 334 Commercial St., Provincetown. For more information about their menu call 508.487.9100 or visit ThePurpleFeather.com.