Coffee, or a treat, can be crucial for the trek. In Colfax you’ll find an enjoyable cup at Fonk’s Coffee House.
It’s not a drive-through but headed west it’s an easy stop on the right side of Main Street. Inside you’ll get a taste of local history. On the wall hangs a sign for Fonk’s Variety Store, a five and dime chain once found throughout Montana, Idaho and Washington. The Colfax store was a downtown anchor for 72 years until it was the last to close in 2000.
Today, instead of hair oils, matchbox cars and harmonicas you’ll find lattes, pastries and quick sandwiches. One recent morning, choices included Wood Fired Salted Caramel bars ($2.50), Cranberry Orange or Raspberry White Chocolate Scones ($2.75), coffee cake ($3) and a variety of muffins. Barista fresh-ground coffees come hot, iced or blended, ranging from an 8 ounce Americano ($1.75) to a 20 ounce Caramel Macchiato ($4.05).
White curtains dress storefront windows stretching from floor to high ceiling. A brick wall features a massive ghost sign, a weather-beaten painted ad for the Carter White Lead Co. It was the largest lead manufacturer in the U.S. from the late 1800s until dissolving in 1936. Relax at a table inside and take a break from the road or continue on your way, sustenance in hand.
Fonk’s, 112 N. Main St., Colfax, (509) 397-3784