Bernie Sanders Takes A Coffee Break In Limerick

Ever wondered what it's like when a presidential candidate drops in on your favorite coffee shop?


Photo courtesy Julie Barretta

Bernie Sanders had a busy day yesterday. He came out against Mayor Kenney’s soda tax as a regressive burden on poor people. He rallied the troops in Oaks at a rally. And when he was done with that, he dropped in on my favorite suburban coffee shop for a cup of coffee and a snack.

Apparently, someone on the local campaign staff is a fan of Java’s Brewin’ in Limerick, because once the speech was done and the candidate had a chance to take a breath, he decided he wanted a cup of coffee and wanted it to come from a local business. So his team brought him straight to the little shop owned and run by the Barretta family.

I talked to Julie Barretta (that’s her in the snap up top), and she told me that they were just getting ready to close the place down for the night when two guys in suits walked in and told one of the employees that Bernie Sanders was in the car and he wanted a cup of coffee.

“And she asked them, ‘Is this some kind of joke?'” Because, of course, that’s going to be anyone’s first response when someone calls to say there’s a presidential candidate in the parking lot.

But it was no joke. The secret service really was there with Bernie in tow. “And then she called me and said, ‘Bernie Sanders is here’ and just hung up.”

So Julie (who lives about five minutes away, but was already off work for the night) jumped in the car and came back to Java’s, finding the place crowded with people when she arrived–with Sanders’s campaign staff, the secret service, the police, and people who had already seen the news go out on Facebook.

“He wasn’t here campaigning,” Julie told me. “I kind of expected him to be like shaking hands and kissing babies, handing out pens and pins. But no, he was just hanging out in the back, chilling. He was just a guy hanging out in a coffee shop.”

The candidate didn’t get all fancy (I would’ve been kind of disappointed if he’d gone for some kind of half-caf whipped caramel frappucino or something), but just went with a cup of dark roast and a biscotti, kicked back for a little bit, and then went for a walk around the neighborhood. Julie didn’t get a chance to talk to him too much, but she did introduce herself.

“I told him, I’m so honored that you chose my business. I just wanted to let him know that I admired him for choosing a local business. And he was so cool, because he said no, I’m honored to be in your establishment. The things that small business owners do, that’s not easy. So he’s running for president and it was like he was admiring us.”

So yeah, Bernie really is just as cool as you’ve always suspected he is. And for what it’s worth, he made a good choice with Java’s. If you’re in the neighborhood, stop by. Even without a secret service escort, I’m sure the Barrettas would be happy to see you.

Oh, and hey, if you’ve ever wondered what it looks like when a presidential candidate descends on your favorite coffee shop, it looks a little like this:


Photo courtesy Jennifer Speer Mondillo via the Java’s Brewin’ Facebook page

Java’s Brewin’ [Facebook]