BY VINCE REMBULAT
Earlier this year, Tiffany Saucedo opened Chit Chat Café and Bakery in the Orchard Supply Hardware shopping center in Manteca.
It was an idea borne out of her not-too-long-ago days of doing private tea parties – she was the owner of Tiffany’s Royal Tea Party – that, much to her surprise, quickly found a clientele.
Thanks to social media and word of mouth, Chit Chat had become a hidden gem.
Don B. on Yelp went so far as to call the business at 273 W. Louise Ave. as a great “hole in the wall” in his review posted shortly after the January opening.
“The selection of pastries is a great variety,” he said, referencing the scones, bagels, and banana bread, to name a few.
But it’s the cinnamon rolls that’s been all the rave.
“Our pizzas and cinnamon rolls are No. 1,” said Saucedo of the two top sellers thus far.
Chit Chat makes personal-sized pizzas, offering an all-meat, Margherita, vegetable, pepperoni, cheese, and barbecue chicken while cooked up in an imported Italian stone oven.
Coffee is a big part of Chit Chat. The quaint setting here is the ideal for folks to sit back, relax, and chit chat; hence the name, according to Saucedo.
“I was also known to chit chat a lot in school,” she jokingly added.
The decor has plenty of personal touches. For example, the wood panels behind the Chit Chat counter were that of the old Saucedo family backyard fence but with some special treatment.
Tiffany’s father did plenty of the interior work including building the benches.
Her mother, Patty Benbrook, works in the kitchen as does daughter Dominque, who is the barista, and Adrian Jr., who helps make crepes on Saturdays, from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.
He and Adrian Sr., Tiffany’s husband, whip up savory and sweet crepes on that one day of the week.
Chit Chat has been a family endeavor and about seven years in the making.
“Her heart is still in doing tea parties,” said Tiffany’s mother Patty.
Saucedo does have plans to do just that again, using her business as the setting while teaching proper etiquette of the tea scene.
Back to the food scene, Chit Chat currently makes one sandwich, a chicken breast sandwich served up with a roasted Ortega chili and pepper jack cheese, and on bakery-fresh ciabatta bread.
There’s also one salad. But this one could be had with chicken and a choice of blueberry or raspberry balsamic vinaigrette dressing from Manteca’s own Olive Oil Pantry.
“We’re still a work in progress,” Saucedo said.
Her hope is to make Chit Chat a comfortable place for people to relax and just talk sans cell phones and other hi-tech devices.
“Our No. 1 goal is for people to feel better when they leave here,” said Saucedo.
For more information, call 239-5724.