The majority of the activity at Code Blue Cafe takes place outside. Under a canopy and warmed by heating lamps, guests lounge on couches and nibble on American and Middle Eastern dishes while puffing flavored smoke from elegant hookahs. Dishes include burgers loaded with onion rings or guacamole, beef kebab sandwiches, and gigantic ice-cream cookies. Fifteen flavors of Al Fakher hookah and 44 of Exotic Starbuzz hookah range from the straightforward such as spearmint, mango, and royal grape, to the more mysterious such as Pirates Cave, Passion Kiss, and Pink.
There are no mystery ingredients in the smoothies and juices at The Smoothie Stop. Instead, customers can watch as the staff pops only the fruits, vegetables, and yogurts they desire into blenders to create a range of healthy drinks. For those looking for a nutrient-rich treat, the staff can squeeze the juices from complementary fruits and veggies, such as apples, celery, and carrots. But for those who desire a bit more indulgence in their drinks without having to use three straws, the staff can whir together creamier options. These include drinks such as pi?a-colada smoothies and honey-milk tea or green tea served with a layer of chewy tapioca pearls. The staff also creates bowls of snow fluff ice, which can be customized with a range of fresh fruit and candy morsels at the toppings bar.
The Coffee Gallery Backstage is the intimate, 49-seat performance space attached to The Coffee Gallery, a locally owned caffeinery. Genre-spanning acts grace the Gallery stage almost nightly, and other than an admission charge (usually between $15 and $20) there is no food or drink minimum. Performances include everything from vaudeville to country, and the open-minded staff welcomes talented, undiscovered niche acts that combine disparate styles, such as jazz-rock, salsa-pop, rock-rock, and pop-pop. Upcoming events include Druha Trava—an acclaimed Czech bluegrass band that will bring its tradition-melding sounds to the Gallery on September 29—and Border Radio, an acoustic band featuring the intricate fiddle work of Mark Indicator and scheduled to perform on October 2. Spectator spots fill up fast, so reservations are strongly encouraged.
Open around the clock, The Saugus Cafe harks back to a simpler time, when a slice of pie and a hot cup of coffee was all the happiness a person could ask for. Outside, the glowing neon of an ancient sign spells out "The Saugus" in looping letters, beckoning visitors inside for cocktails or pancakes at any time of day. If they take the bait, they'll find comfy booths that are great for cozying up on a first or thirty-fourth date. There's also a long line of swiveling stools at the counter, where regulars hunker down every morning to eat breakfast and read the latest news about President Eisenhower.
What is the most delicious color in the world? Ask the team at Ninong's Pastries & Cafe, and they'll give you a definitive answer to that question: purple. A violet hue is the signature to the cafe's pancakes, coffee cakes, shakes, and many other creations. Though not all of them, of course. The full menu represents an eclectic sampling of Filipino-American cuisine, from all-day breakfast dishes to savory entr?es including Mom's Loco Moco. The cooks here also make baguette sandwiches to order?right down to the bread, which they bake fresh for each and every corned beef or marinated pork sandwich. In addition to imported bites, Ninong's Pastries & Cafe also serves imported teas and coffees, including Barako Coffee imported from the Philippines brewed with water imported from the clouds.
Leafy palm fronds filter sunlight as it trickles in through House of Brews' expansive windows to land gingerly upon cups of freshly brewed coffee forged from Gaviña Gourmet Coffee beans. Visitors lounge by the fireplace with steaming cups of specialty espresso and tea drinks, the vibrations of free wireless Internet infusing the beverages with up-to-the-minute stock prices. Neatly manicured shrubs and trees shelter customers on the shaded courtyard patio, the café's wide variety of sandwiches, salads, and breakfast items lavish palates with all-day nourishment.