It seems like Mother Nature has gifted us a Valentine’s Day present in the form of some warmer weather. Take advantage of the warmth and the sunshine and go explore the many cafes in and around Berkeley. Grab your cold drink, cool down and take a leisurely stroll while enjoying the fact that it’s February and you’re wearing shorts. Follow this guide for the best places to grab a cold drink to give you your caffeine or sugar fix.
Head down Bancroft Way to ShareTea, the renowned boba cafe that’s probably hosted a fundraiser for at least one of the clubs you’re involved with. Instead of getting your typical fruity boba drink, branch out and try something new. The Oreo milk tea is a gem among boba drinks. It’s rich and creamy, and comes full of chocolatey goodness. Part tea and part milkshake, this drink is sure to satisfy your sweet tooth. And since it has the word tea in it, it’s essentially healthy and calorie free, right? Drink up, because anything with both boba and Oreos that can be slurped through a big straw is worth the trek and a few bucks.
Everyone loves Caffe Strada for its convenience and coffee, but it has much more to offer than lattes and mochas. If you’re not in the mood for coffee, try one of Strada’s Italian Sodas. The drink uses sparkling water and a syrup of your choice to flavor the soda. Strada has an impressive amount of syrups to choose from, ranging from lemon and lime to peppermint. The syrup will make your drink sweet, while the sparkling water keeps it tasting light and fresh. Take your drink to go and enjoy it as you stroll down College Avenue or make your way through campus to people-watch all the sunbathers on Memorial Glade.
Fenton’s Creamery is the old-fashioned diner of your dreams, but even better. Not only does it have all the burgers, fries and sandwiches you could want, it also has what are likely to be the biggest ice cream sundaes on this side of the Bay. Rather than going for a monstrous sundae to be split among friends, order a milkshake. You can get your milkshake served in a tin or a tall glass, and you have a plethora of flavors to choose from when deciding what to order. Whether you’re a peppermint or a toasted almond kind of person, Fenton’s is sure to have the perfect milkshake for you.
While we all know that Philz is famous for brewing its coffee one cup at a time and their signature mint mojito iced coffee, there are plenty of other menu items deserving of your attention. The gingersnap iced coffee is a lesser-known, equally delicious option. Like their other coffee drinks, this one can be made to your specifications. You can determine how sweet and creamy you’d like your drink to be, though be sure to take into account the spice of the ginger in this drink. The combination of sugar and caffeine will have you bouncing off the walls while the savory quality of the ginger will keep you on your feet.
Berkeley Student Food Collective
If you’re looking for a drink to cool you down while making you feel good about your purchase and your health, then look no further than the Berkeley Student Food Collective. Grab a bottle of your favorite kombucha and pretend you’re not drinking bacteria. Don’t worry, though — this is the good kind. This lightly carbonated drink will help keep your stomach happy and satisfied. You can feel good about supporting a local business and your fellow students. Kombucha is also significantly lower in sugar and calories than the other drinks on this list, giving you another reason to be satisfied with your purchase.
Contact Rachel Feder at [email protected].