At first, Tin Drum Asia Café's rapid service and bright decor evoke the aromatic street stands of Hong Kong, where founder Steven Chan ate throughout his childhood. The traditional ambiance is no accident—the franchise's name also harks back to a bygone era, when a tin drummer would awaken citizens and regale them with current events as they ate the day’s first meal. The electronic kiosks dotting the café, however, plunk this traditional scene in the middle of a cyberpunk setting. They allow patrons to customize their orders based on taste preferences and nutritional content, accommodating dietary endeavors such as vegetarianism and weight-loss goals.
This merger of technology and urban convention reflects a penchant for edgy ideas that also affects the menu. Items inspired by the culinary techniques of Japan, China, Vietnam, and Thailand share space in the savory catalog, taking the form of street tacos, soups, and mango chicken, a take on the general tso's staple that's sweeter than a syrup-soaked army helmet. Music is the final ingredient that charges the atmosphere. Nation's Restaurant News reports that it typically plays at an energizing 120 beats per minute and was a factor in attracting the café's initial college crowds.
Seventy-five percent of Urbanspooners recommend Fountain City Coffee. Four [Yelpers] give the coffee shop an average of five stars, and four [Insider Pagers] give it an average of four stars. More than 1,500 Facebooekrs like Fountain City Coffee.
Originally opened as the Top Hat Drive-In in 1953, Sonic has grown into a burger-franchise mecca that today operates out of 3,500 locations across the country, making it the nation’s largest chain of drive-in restaurants. Sonic specializes in made-to-order American classics—including burgers, hot dogs, milk shakes, and marshmallow Ford Thunderbolts—which customers order and receive without ever having to leave their cars. Unique menu items include toaster sandwiches stacked on thick slices of texas toast, as well as the brand’s signature tots and fresh limeades.
Sonic’s numerous awards include a 2011 Zagat survey ranking it among the top-five fast-food restaurants in three categories: Best Value Menu, Best Milkshake, and Best Drivethru. The benevolent eatery has also donated more than $2 million to public schools throughout the country through its program Limeades for Learning, which helps to fund educational projects and retirement plans for classroom guinea pigs.
Blockader Homebrew Supply supplies homebrew masters of all strengths and mouthfeels with its premium selection of ingredients and trustworthy brew equipment. House-bound brewers can concoct their own hoppy elixirs with a homebrew kit, a treasure trove of everything brewers need to craft 5 gallons of their own fermented finery. The equipment package (an $85 value) includes a primary fermenter, airlock, bottling bucket and wand, capper, auto siphon, adhesive thermometer, hydrometer, cleansing solution, bottle brush, and a True Brew homebrewing guide book, which helps chart the way to better-tasting beer.
Sporting a moniker inspired by the owners' daughter, Mia's Cafe (formerly Shelly's Corner Cafe) offers tasty renditions of traditional lunch café favorites. A menu of midday dishes kicks off with portions of lush greenery such as the chicken salad, a half garden salad topped with tomatoes, cheese, croutons, and a heap of tender chicken ($6.50). Kindergarten food critics give rave reviews to the namesake Mia's PB&J ($2.34), while dual-acting parental agents tag along for an assortment of toasted options, including a freshly made chicken salad sandwich ($4.45) or a rye-flanked corn beef Reuben topped with an alliterative array of swiss, sauerkraut, and dressing ($5.50)—all offered on a variety of breads. Carb-evading diners may choose to bundle disorderly toppings of the roasted turkey and swiss, club, or chicken salad into a neatly packed wrap optimized for on-the-go eating ($5.50).