"Too much of a good thing can be wonderful." Mae West uttered those words decades ago, but it's also the motto at Sweet Lady Jane (1631 Montana), one of the newest cafes in town. Sweet Lady Jane (otherwise known as Jane Lockhart) might be new to Santa Monica but she's been providing Hollywood's elite with mouth-watering goodies for years out of her original location on Melrose Ave. The menu in both locations is pretty similar: Cakes (28 flavors ranging from Almond Roca to Triple Berry Shortcake); Specialties (such as Chocolate Tacos); Pies (chock-full of fruit); Cheesecakes (including Hazelnut and Chocolate Vanilla Swirl) and Tarts (including Bananas and Cream and Apple). Given that I made the scene extra early this morning, I played it safe by ordering an Oatmeal Date Bar ($2.00) and a small coffee ($1.50). The Date Bar is a perfect way to start the day. It's thick, with a generous layer of moist, date filling and a semi-sweet crust. The oatmeal topping gives the whole thing a healthy appearance. As for the cakes, well, no one ever accused Mae West of being too thin. Here are a few of my favorites:
Old Fashion Chocolate;
Seven Layer Chocolate;
And Red Velvet. But what really took the cake this morning was a Sweet Little Old Lady who sat at the table next to mine with her Poodle, Rex, a pampered pooch if there ever was one. Rex, a registered "service animal," ran circles around the woman's legs and sniffed continuously at the base of the table until the woman finally got the message. "Goodness," she said, "It looks like Rex needs to take a walk. Would you mind watching my purse?" She disappeared for about five minutes, leaving her purse in full view. I guess when you're in a place called Sweet Lady Jane, it's hard to imagine anything bad happening ...!