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Mr. Holmes Bakehouse Peach Cardamon Danish: An entire think piece could be dedicated to Mr. Holmes Bakehouse, a pastry shop in the heart of San Francisco's Tenderloin district. The Dominique Ansel Bakery of SF, it has an equally iconic dessert: the Cruffin. A cross between a muffin and croissant, the Cruffin is filled with a seasonal cream and is made in limited quantities, requiring those willing to wait to get in line early (the bakery opens at 7am on weekdays). But unlike DA Bakery, Mr. Holmes is not based in the SOHO of SF. To... (read more) 4.0/5.0

4.0 danish cardamon peach mrholmesbakehouse sf sanfrancisco pastry desserts recommended
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Happy Lemon Lemon black tea: Textbook mediocre black tea. Tastes like Lipton, and it probably is. On the plus side, the drinks contains an entire lemon, sliced into wedges. But the overall effect is black tea I can easily make at home. Good thing it was free (from the buy one get on free promotion during Happy Lemon’s opening weekend in Berkeley). 2.0/5.0

2.0 tea black lemon happylemon berkeley drinks
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Happy Lemon Mango Yakult Smoothie with Boba: My favorite Taiwanese bubble tea chain made its way to Berkeley, located dangerously close to the Downtown Berkeley BART station. This weekend, they're celebrating their opening by offering a buy-one-get-one-free special, which has led to insane lines from Berkeley students. They even taped off a maze-like line on the floor to control the flow of eager lemon-drink enthusiasts. I ordered their mango yakult smoothie along with a lemon black tea (review forthcoming). Immediately upon receiv... (read more) 3.5/5.0

3.5 boba smoothie yakult mango happylemon berkeley drinks recommended
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Little Giant Ice Cream Thai Green Curry and Key Lime Pie Ice Cream: Known for unusual flavors like asparagus and beez cheese (a combination of goat cheese, honey, and black pepper), Little Giant Ice Cream, located on Telegraph in Oakland, did not disappoint, particularly with the well-balanced Thai green curry ice cream. Equal parts savory and sweet, it's a creamy concoction where the lemongrass is unmistakable, and while it's vegan, it's incredibly smooth. The key lime pie was quite good but did not quite hit the same high point largely due to its slightl... (read more) 4.0/5.0

4.0 cream ice pie lime key curry green thai littlegianticecream oakland icecream recommended
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Saffron Road Moroccan Barbecue Baked Lentil Chips: Crispy veggie chips that are substantially thicker yet lighter in texture than tortilla chips. Sized for dipping. The moroccan spice blend definitely lends a more distinct character than your typical barbecue flavor. It's less sweet (but still has traces of what I'm guessing is cinnamon), and has a smoky, peppery flavor (my guess is lots of paprika). Overall, though, I found the flavor strong enough that I wouldn't want to eat much in a single serving, and it wasn't memorable enough to be... (read more) 3.0/5.0

3.0 lentil baked barbecue moroccan saffronroad tortilla chips berkeleybowl
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Uji Time Tofu Soft Serve: This flavor has eluded me for several months. I sampled the tofu the first time I ever came to this Japanese ice cream shop in Berkeley and loved it but opted for the classic black sesame for my first cup. Ever subsequent time I went back to Uji, the tofu was sold out. Finally, a few months ago, I was able to get it, but this time, the texture had degraded a bit, with the soft serve being uncharacteristically icy. Still, the soy milk flavor is excellent and easily identifiable to anyone ... (read more) 3.0/5.0

3.0 serve soft tofu ujitime soy soymilk berkeley icecream softserve