The Village Inn Cafe is not your pretentious, trendy, foodie hangout.
We serve great, recognizable food for breakfast and lunch. We serve generous portions at a good price. We don’t do lattes or espresso; we serve good coffee in a bottomless cup.
We are located an easy 2 minutes from Highway 24 and have plenty of free parking in front. We believe that a good coffee shop opens early to serve the community:
- Commuters who need to beat the traffic.
- Contractors & construction workers who need to be on the job site.
- Have your breakfast meeting at a convenient place.
- Making a pre-dawn airport drop-off? Stop for breakfast on the way home and then go back to bed.
- Before school birthday “kidnap” parties. Please call a day ahead to be sure a table will be waiting.
- On the weekends get in early and beat the crowd
- Sorry, we do not take reservations, however we will accommodate larger parties on weekday mornings. Please call a day or two ahead to arrange.
The Village Inn Cafe, located then in a narrow space in the Village Square Shopping Center was purchased by Kurt & Kathy Bellows in December of 1985. They cleaned it thoroughly, installed some new equipment, changed the menu and opened on January 6th 1986.
The restaurant was immediately successful, and business grew steadily. After eight years, Kurt & Kathy had an opportunity to relocate St. Helena. They sold the restaurant in August of 1994. St. Helena was not a good fit for them, and fortunately the Village Inn Café was not a good fit for the new owner. Kurt and Kathy were able to buy back the restaurant and returned in February of 1995. This hiatus turned out to be a very costly six month vacation.
Kurt made improvements to the restaurant over the next many years, always trying to improve efficiency and quality. This was a difficult task, given that the space was originally built in the mid 1960’s. Kurt always felt that the facility could never measure up to the food that he served.
In 2007 a larger space in the center became available and Kurt and Kathy embarked on a project to build an entirely new restaurant from scratch. The space formerly occupied by Kamien’s Pharmacy, and more recently Seifert’s Floral Company, was gutted to the studs and completely rebuilt.
The move was completed on October 29th 2007. The Village Inn Café is now located in a completely modern space with great ventilation (you won’t leave smelling like bacon), excellent air conditioning (even on the hottest days we maintain a perfect 75 degrees in the dining room), and two large, clean, well stocked, accessible restrooms.
After more than 31 years the restaurant is still a work in progress, Kurt and Kathy are always looking for ways to improve the diner’s experience.
Kurt and Kathy met while working at Denny’s in Walnut Creek. They married and were expecting their first child when Kurt realized that waiting tables would not support his family in the long term. So, instead of doing something sensible like furthering his education, he chose to open a restaurant.
They acquired the Village Inn Cafe in January of 1986, and the first of three children was born in February. Kurt, in spite of having no cooking experience, became the chef and perfected his craft behind the grill. Kurt and Kathy have been providing Orinda with excellent food and service for over 31 years.
Old timers will remember Kathy waitressing in her father’s restaurant, the Moraga Coffee Shop during her high school years at Campolindo.
Kurt is a Walnut Creek native, beginning his foodservice career at the Valley View Lodge retirement apartments, serving and washing dishes.