A little family run spot, Saigon Bistro Express pours a heap of passion into every Vietnamese banh mi sandwich, noodle soup, and grilled sate skewer. Lemongrass tofu stars in vegetarian entrees, while fresh fruit shakes cool off palates still smarting from flavorful bites of spicy beef or chicken rice bowls. The cafe atmosphere is welcoming and casual, with orders taken at the counter and delivered to your table by restaurant staff. Throughout the day, customers breeze through the friendly, family-owned dining space, stopping in for a full meal or a quick bite.
Mocha Magic has served up locally roasted coffee and homemade café fare in a sun-bathed modern space since 1994. Behind the café counter, sandwich makers layer sourdough and croissant with honey baked ham, smoked turkey, and fresh produce accompaniments. At breakfast, patrons can jumpstart the day with freshly baked scones and muffins, but are discouraged from jumpstarting a car by pouring espresso drinks directly into the gas tank.
Having lived in Ripon for two decades, Jake Parks had a good idea of what his hometown lacked: a warm, welcoming café where friends could sit and converse and commuters could stop in for lunch on the go. He took it upon himself to fill this empty niche, founding his eponymous café and basing its menu around premium drinks and gourmet sandwiches. Today, the first thing one notices when entering Jake’s Coffee, Tea and Sandwiches is the aroma of coffee, which starts brewing at 6 a.m. Jake and his team pride themselves on crafting a wide range of caffeinated drinks, from mochas flavored with Monin syrups to red-eye blends that keep customers awake as they attempt to set the world record for most dictionaries read in one sitting. The shop’s many blends of tea, available hot or iced, pair nicely with freshly baked pastries and a selection of savory wraps and paninis that incorporate the shop’s signature cream-cheese pesto spread.
Raised in Germany, La Lune Sucr?e founder Bettina Pope further cultivated her passion for carefully crafted baked goods while living abroad in Paris and Sussex. So when Ms. Pope moved to America, she ached for the crusty baguettes and puff-pastry quiches she had savored in European patisseries. She began gathering family recipes and seeking out apprenticeships with pastry chefs such as Olivier Grimaud of Aux Delices de Pierre in France. Now, as head chef at La Lune Sucr?e, she fills plates with her favorite French and German cafe fare, from flaky, light croissant sandwiches to crisp salads and homemade soups. Additionally, Ms. Pope enfolds European cheeses and cream sauces into crepe batter she makes from scratch and doles out fresh-baked French baguettes to picnickers and arcade-goers short a mallet for Whack-A-Mole.
Steaming bowls of soup rest atop the tables at Lunch with Tony, inviting diners to dunk corners of sandwiches into their seasoned depths. It’s a perfect illustration of what the eponymous chef calls "approachable" gourmet food. These made-from-scratch soups teem with tempting ingredients, such as the morsels of corn and chicken in the southwest chowder, or the certified Angus beef and genuine sass in the chili. Bowlfuls find flavorful soulmates in hot and cold sandwiches, laden with Italian meats or pan-fried eggplant pressed between focaccia. The eatery also serves breakfast sandwiches and provides catering, recognizing that hunger can strike in any location at any time.