Turn-of-the-16th century theologian and scholar Desiderius Erasmus is regularly quoted as saying "When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes." Which is just one more reason that I am not more generally known as "Prince of the Humanists," because I went to the place where the books are and bought food instead.
Actually, to be perfectly frank, I went near the place where the books are and bought food by proxy, since though the 1st Edition Cafe and Espresso Bar is conveniently located on the first floor of the Downtown Library and easy to get to from the street, downtown OKC is still to' up to a significant degree – so rather than compounding the problem by attempting to park, Mia leapt out and negotiated the actual purchase of food while I cruised to the Skirvin and back a couple of times and then picked her back up. Teamwork!
That arrangement means I can't speak to the cafe's interior decor or how well the food is presented for dine-in customers. On the other hand, my to-go panini was still warm and slightly crisp after the ~5 minutes wending our way back to the Slice House, so they're clearly doing something right. I got the "Vonnegut": turkey, bacon and cheddar with avocado and garlic aioli, and while there wasn't much punch to the latter ingredient, that's arguably a good thing for office workers. (Plus, I put garlic powder in my fried eggs, so I'm probably not the most reliable judge of how much is enough.) All the textures were good, especially the flatbread that contained it, the avocado was fresh, the bacon actually cooked… and with a bag of nondescript chips it constituted a perfect portion – I could have eaten a few bites more from momentum but there was no need. It was just enough to sate without feeling glutted.
I'll admit that when Mia floated the idea, I half expected the sandwich place appended to the library to be a novelty that wouldn't warrant a trip by itself. Now I'm thinking about what to get next time, and idly pondering where to park so I can go in and test the espresso bar too.
STEVE GILL is unusually tall, has a B.A. in Letters and a minor in Classics from OU, drinks a great deal of coffee and openly delights in writing, editing and catching the occasional typo for Slice – especially since his dream career (millionaire layabout in a P.G. Wodehouse novel) is notoriously difficult to break into. He's probably trying to think of a joke about pirates right now.