Roasting fresh coffee daily, this independent shop distributes a variety of premium beans that range from smooth to bold, as well as specialty bags of organic and flavored coffees like chocolate macadamia nut, cinnamon nut cream, pumpkin spice, and Irish cream. Mavericks Roasting Company's leading roast, Midnight Ride ($12.95/pound), embodies the company's signature style, with 100% pure Arabica beans slow roasted to bold, bitterness-free, aromatic bliss. On the lighter side, try Peru Organic—certified by the Organic Crop Improvement Association—which is roasted with the same pure Arabica beans to a smooth finish, or the indulgent Mudslide, which is so satisfyingly rich, you might find Scrooge McDuck swimming in it.
Cafe 225’s seasonally changing menu is a tour of California. Fresh seafood evokes the state’s scenic coastline, and chicken breasts hot from the oak-charcoal grill come with drizzles of cream sauce and slices of avocado that call to mind the state’s lush avocado groves. Crowned in fire-roasted chilies and chipotle aioli, the eatery’s burgers mimic the spiciness of the Mexican food just across the border; with bacon and locally sourced cheddar, meanwhile, they become a tastier American classic than a baseball on a pie tin. An array of personal pizzas and pastas rounds out the menu, and the wooden bar’s selection of 70 wines and artisanal beers complements meals.
The restaurant’s proprietor got his start in the industry at the age of 12, when he helped make sandwiches during the lunchtime rush at his father’s San Francisco eatery. In the ensuing decades, he has cultivated the know-how and taste to construct Cafe 225’s menu, along with its exposed kitchen and rotisserie grill. Today, he even makes a point of sourcing as many ingredients as possible from environmentally sustainable companies.
The food aficionados at Reedley Sandwich Shop swaddle their best meats, veggies, and condiments with chewy, golden bread, then accompany the yeast-framed eats with warm soups and crisp salads. To activate creative juices without ingesting powdered tempera, patrons can build their own sandwiches, designing handheld hunger-busters using bold ingredients such as roast beef, salami, provolone, and pepper jack (4.25/half, $5.50/small, $7/large). For a bun-based snack loaded with protein, gobble up a chili dog ($4.50), or for a clam-based dessert loaded with chowder, savor spicy slurps from a sourdough bread bowl ($8.50). Sweeter meal finales include milkshakes and root-beer floats ($4.50).
Cedar View Winery has spent the last decade perfecting their craft to produce distinctive wines with an emphasis on rare and eclectic varietals. The tour peels back the curtain to offer curious quaffers an inside look at the art and science of viniculture, narrating the epic journey of their flagship Alicante Bouschet grape from its infancy on the vine through the high hopes of graduation day, and onto the physical and spiritual crush of the fermentation process. At the end of the tour, older and wiser connoisseurs file into Cedar View’s elegantly appointed tasting room to test their freshly honed sommelier skills on six separate wines, as well as nibble on smoked-salmon finger sandwiches, balsamic-dressed grilled sausage, and other gourmet appetizers.
Blossom Trail Cafe's head chef, Peppino Caracciolo, whips up piquant, Italian-inspired cuisine in a charming, casual café setting perched among the Blossom Trail's picturesque orange and plum orchards. Delve into the creative concoctions and fresh ingredients peppering the dinner menu with the fried calamari ($8.99) or the bruschetta ($5.99). Entreewise, the Salmon Fantasia ($15.99) arrives baked and adorned with fresh tomatoes, capers, and kalamata olives, and 16 ounces of capital-lettered flavor lumbers in each T-bone steak ($19.99). Sip a frothy domestic beer ($3) and take in the view from the outdoor patio as you nosh the half-pound Italian burger and fries ($8.99), or let pasta pirouette around your fork with an order of spaghetti ($8.99), served with fresh marinara or meat sauce.
Valley Lahvosh Baking Company's artisan bakers, who've been crafting doughy delights since 1922, forge their signature crackerbreads using three generations of Armenian family recipes. Bags of 15" crackerbread rounds––which double as throwing discuses for teddy bears––come in original and cracked-wheat varieties that buyers can slather in condiments or use to make wrapped sandwiches. A great base for hors d'oeuvres served at parties and social gatherings, boxes of Heart and Star Lahvosh crackers cheerily accept dips and spreads on unique cutout shapes. Rather than impersonating a horse to receive sugar cubes, buyers can get their sugary kicks with a bag of heart-shaped Sweetheart Snacks lightly dusted with cinnamon. Each assorted holiday package bears a chip clip that keeps snacks inside their bags and helps preserve freshness.
Powell's sports a vast collection of confections that covers the entirety of the nostalgic scale. Dig for long-lost saccharine treasure at the bulk candy wall ($9.99 per lb.) or cocoa-coated sarcophagi such as succulent turtles and chocolate-covered pretzels ($4.50 per 1/4 lb.). Powell's also serves up freshly scooped servings of gelatos classicos (creamy, rich, Italian-style ice cream), coolly served in anything from a child's cup ($2.95) to an adult regular ($4.95) to straight into cupped hands (price negotiable). To-go pints are also available for picnics, birthdays, or igloo-apartment ribbon-cutting ceremonies ($7.95/pint).