Using free trade, organic coffee, the baristas at the drive through Hot Java Café create piping-hot and refreshingly cold iced drinks. Along with the standard mochas and cappuccinos, the drink menu also includes specialties such as the Nutty Irishman, a latte with hazelnut and Irish cream, plus peanut butter blended iced coffees. Hot chocolate, strawberry milk, and Italian sodas take care of the kids, and depending on the season, guests can also enjoy eggnog lattes, apple ciders, or multiple Santas standing in line.
Coffee can be bitter and bracing or sweet and comforting at Java Bliss. That's because baristas make their gourmet coffee in dozens of styles, from standard cups of black coffee to lattes to blended drinks pumped full of flavorful syrups. They make both steaming hot and iced drinks, and both come with an optional dollop of the shop's homemade whipped cream. Customers can pair these drinks with breakfast staples such as bagels, muffins, and egg sandwiches, which help get the morning off to a good start, like an alarm clock that only whispers compliments.
The bakers at Cookies and Milk are out to make sweet dreams a little sweeter with their delivery service. Starting at 8 p.m. each Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night, fresh batches of warm chocolate-chip, peanut-butter, sugar, or chocolate-crinkle cookies are deployed to ease cravings across the city, and the tasteful deliveries don't cease until the wee hours of the morning. To encourage dessert-time dunking, each batch of cookies can be paired with cold milk, and the staff can even include a handwritten note in the order, making cookie delivery a great way to tell someone you care or remind your landlord that your oven is broken.
"[An] intense, buttery burst of flavor [with a] delicate texture" are the best things about The Donut Shop's maple bar, according to Style magazine's September 2012 issue. With bare-bones, yet fresh decor, The Donut Shop keeps the focus on the donuts, all made with shortening free of trans fat. The day's selection of treats is hand-lettered in colorful chalk on a blackboard above a glass case and granite counter tops. On any given day the fluffy dough can be embracing jelly, cream, and peanut-butter filling, and options such as devil's food allow guests to fulfill childhood dreams by starting their day off with dessert. Hot or cold chai and specialty coffee drinks bring out each donut's sweet flavors when served as a dunking option or chewed simultaneously.
At multiple locations throughout the Sacramento area—including the newest one downtown—the chefs at Perko's Cafe are busy cracking fresh ranch eggs into omelets, skillets, and scrambles featuring ingredients such as portuguese linguiça or hickory-smoked ham. They turn hand-cut, marinated steaks into tri-tip sandwiches au jus, and they build towering double-decker burgers whose half-pound ground-beef patties teeter with cheese, lettuce, tomato, and thousand-island dressing. To match the beef- and barbecue-filled menu, many of the welcoming dining rooms have a decidedly Southwestern feel, with corrugated-tin accents, old-timey tools, and booth dividers that resemble a black-and-white cow or an incredibly complex inkblot test.