The chefs at Jake’s specialize in whipping up circular comestibles, dishing out pizzas with more than 20 toppings in addition to scrumptious specialty pies and a sizeable selection of burgers, sandwiches, and wings. Cozy up in a booth with a signature pizza ($15.25 for a small), such as the barbecue chicken, which plunders the garden for ripe pineapple and onion before wedding them to juicy marinated chicken breast on an altar of smoked provolone. The create-your-own-pizza menu rounds up the usual suspects including pepperoni, mushrooms, and anchovies and puts them in a lineup alongside their more exotic counterparts such as louisiana hot sausage, artichoke hearts, and chives ($12.05+ for a small). Burgers ($5.65), quesadillas ($4.50), and a chicken philly with fries ($8) clamor for diners' attention, and a bucket of wings ($12.75) provides a perfect opportunity to prove your kindergarten teacher wrong about your ability to share.
If you hang around downtown San Jose for long enough, you might become curious about someone called "The Brit." It seems like they host more parties than is humanly possible—"When do they sleep?" one has to wonder, hearing about the many DJs, karaoke sessions, and sports viewings they host. Follow a weekend crowd, however, and you'll learn that The Brit is not a person, but a pub where British cuisine pairs with beer, cocktails, and cheery character.
The menu at Britannia Arms Downtown covers the savory bases, from shepherd's pie to bangers and mash. And though they are British staples, the recipes are far from flippant reproductions. The fish and chips features housemade beer batter and tartar sauce over its Atlantic white cod, and the Angus beef patty on the baguette burger is hand-shaped. These and other entrees pair well with more than 20 drinks on draft, such as Boddingtons and Wyder's Pear Cider, available in pints, 120-oz "beer towers," or a 16-story hollow replica of Big Ben.
The Brit rallies its patrons for events almost every night of the week. There might be a UFC match on its many televisions, a stand-up comedian regaling the guests, or a trivia contest pitting team against team. One constant is the chatter on the heated patio, which sprawls for 3,000 square feet and has its own full-service bar.
In 1981, Britannia Arms' owner, an English expat, opened up a portal to the sceptered isle in Cupertino by establishing his British pub. Since then, the family-owned bar has been churning out authentic Anglo-centric eats, such as grilled pork sausages or corned beef and cabbage. To show Michael Collins there aren’t any hard feelings, the pub serves traditional Irish breakfasts on the weekends. The bar pipes in British soccer and rugby games on its collection of high-def TVs while out on the heated outdoor patio, guests stay warm as they impersonate John Cleese with those fun fake English accents that everyone loves.
In between savory bites, diners can cleanse their palates with a staggering array of 20 beers and two hard ciders on tap at the fully-stocked bar. And when not watching the latest sports game, including NFL games, the friendly neighborhood pub keeps guests entertained with regular DJ and karaoke nights as well as dartboards and complimentary pool tables.
During the challenge, teams of two or more individuals will run helter-skelter around the city in a frantic race for cash prizes and personal pride, with a first-place award of $200. Not only will participants have to solve strands of interconnected clues that would test the deductive powers of even the most seasoned consulting detective, they'll need to plot spatiotemporal stratagems while exploring undiscovered corners of the city. Although being physically fit is a plus, quick wits and wise planning will ultimately determine the winners. Participation in the challenge gets contestants a clue packet, race-number bib, and T-shirt, and fees also go toward the appealing prize pool. The website offers a regular FAQ, as well as a Groupon FAQ with further details on the intricacies of the race, what to wear the day of, why it's not okay to bring a boa constrictor, and more.
At Clubhouse, an extensive menu of creative American cuisine awaits amid a captivating collection of 30 high-definition televisions, and even higher definition cocktails. Watch a Sharks game while sinking your own great-white choppers into a plate of sliders forged from USDA Choice ground bison meat, and topped with balsamic onion jam ($11). Green-blooded guests can obviate hunger-based conundrums with the marinated portobello sliders, whose gentle deliciousness can be countered with a specialty Shark Bite cocktail ($10), an aqua-hued concoction of tequila, blue curacao, and Sunshine margarita mix that fills the drinker with the insatiable urge to nibble on Richard Dreyfus. The sleek, luxurious dining area and upscale clientele will have diners feeling that they've been transported into a sexy spy film, without the need to diffuse a pepper bomb before eating it.