Quick bites

You won’t need lunch after defeating a large breakfast portion at Carlos’ kitchen.

Tea World  1620 Mendocino Ave., Santa Rosa

Just across Mendocino from campus and behind the culinary building where a frozen yogurt store used to be, you’ll find Tea World.

Tea World is a bubble tea and ice cream parlor that’s been open less than a month. It serves bay area favorite Mitchell’s ice cream with flavors range from the standard vanilla to more exotic options such as Mexican chocolate which tastes like Mexican hot chocolate and Adu or purple yam flavored ice cream with a deep purple color to it.

Their main beverage, milk tea, is milkier than the version at Quickly down the road. You can choose how sweet you want your tea and choose a base tea, either black or green tea as the base. Then choose your flavors and what boba or flavored jelly you want to add.

Overall, it’s OK for milk tea and it is cheaper than Quickly. If you want a snack with it, there’s not much to find there. It’s an ice cream parlor/bubble tea shop no more, no less. So if you want a snack to go along, you’ll have to try elsewhere. Veterans get 50 percent off drinks and Wi-Fi is free in store.
-Arthur Gonzalez-Martin

Carlos’ Country Kitchen  90 College Ave., Santa Rosa

In Santa Rosa, there are lots of places to go for breakfast. If you’re in the mood for a big serving of pancakes, biscuits and gravy or huevos rancheros on early weekend morning, look no further than Carlos’ Country Kitchen.

Located on College Avenue, Carlos’ Country Kitchen offers only breakfast and lunch. For a home style cooked meal, it offers a wide variety of choices for breakfast. From eggs Benedict to pancakes and omelettes, the restaurant serves huge portions. If you’re not feeling super hungry in the morning, one platter will do just fine.

The restaurant itself may feel small, but gives a country and homely feel with red gingham patterned curtains, spacious mirrors and charming farm animal art.

The ham and cheese omelette was delicious. The ham had the perfect blend of salty and sweet. The hash browns served alongside needed salt but were otherwise very well made. The waitresses were attentive and made sure guests were taken care of.

Overall, if you’re looking for a place that opens early, serves heart homemade breakfast food and gives you a sense of the good old days, come down to Carlos’ Country Kitchen.
-Celine Gossage

Chloe’s French Cafe  3883 Airway Dr. #145, Santa Rosa

France is known for not only the Eiffel Tower but also its delicious cuisine. Here in Santa Rosa it can be hard to find French comfort food, but Chloe’s French Cafe, located on the bottom floor of a Kaiser medical building off Hopper Avenue, is a hidden gem.

This cozy restaurant is open during the week until 4 p.m. Lunchtime is the busiest hour, but the line moves quickly to accommodate the hungry crowd.

The December chill cries for soups and warm foods to keep you warm. A daily soup and pasta gratin special are posted on a large chalkboard. A real delight while waiting to order are the pastries, croissants, scones, galettes, palmiers, meringues and cookies. If you are a chocolate lover, the chocolate fondant with cherries is a must. Eating this warm dessert, followed by a cup of coffee, is the perfect finisher.

Don’t forget to try the food; Chloe’s French Cafe has salads, sandwiches and quiches. Everything on the menu appears too good just from reading the ingredients, making it hard to choose. Two salads that stood out were the French green lentil and the herb roasted chicken.

On the menu, the listing for sandwiches are hot and cold style. Vegetarians have limited sandwich options with only the Mediterranean, including house-made hummus with fresh garlic, lemon zest vinaigrette, sun-dried tomatoes, marinated artichokes, red onions, chopped olives and feta cheese.

All sandwiches have unique combinations to satisfy authentic French tastes. Under the specialty items is a classic style sandwich called the croque monsieur; applewood smoked ham and béchamel sauce are smothered between two slices of loaf bread. This sandwich is then topped with Swiss cheese and baked, making it a fork and knife delight.

This cafe offers something for everyone. If a busy lunch rush is not your style, it dies down at 1 p.m. From the outside it looks small but there is more than enough seating both inside or out. The service is very accommodating and pleasant. Everything available is under $10 making it affordable for students who need more options.
-Rachel Genthe

Sam’s For Play Cafe 2630 Cleveland Ave., Santa Rosa

On Cleveland Avenue, there is a quaint little cafe called Sam’s for Play. It’s hard to miss with its picket fence, white building and blue trim. Inside, you’ll think you stepped back in time; music from the ‘50s playing in the background, knick knacks and ads from the mid 20th century decorate the walls. All in all, it looks like a place James Dean, Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley may have stopped by for a bite to eat. In addition to a fantastic atmosphere, you’ll also receive friendly service.

Now this isn’t one of your run of the mill ‘50s themed diners with little jukeboxes on the table. Sam’s actually looks and feels like it’s from the rock n’ roll age.

But let’s get down to brass tacks and talk about the food. It may not be deserving of three Michelin stars, but it sure hits that special place in your soul and stomach. Sam’s makes a variety of food that rivals a good home cooked meal from sandwiches to all day breakfast.

One of the best is the chicken fried steak. Some of you health nuts out there may never have heard of this crispy, gravy-laden dish. The name is pretty self-explanatory. Imagine a nice, succulent steak. Now deep fry that slab of meat like a Twinkie, slather it with country gravy and viola! You’ve got yourself the physical incarnation of a heart attack! If this heap of Americana cholesterol doesn’t make your mouth salivate and your heart palpitate, nothing will.

In the mood for something that won’t send you to the hospital? No problem! There are plenty of other options to choose from. Want something light yet filling around lunchtime? Try the French dip.

Want breakfast for dinner? Then go ahead and give into anarchy and order an omelette. The only thing you should avoid is the deep fried chicken. In all honesty, it’s dreadfully dry. Everything else is the epitome of home-style cooking.

If you’re looking for a nice warm meal this holiday season or any season for that matter, then Sam’s is the place to go. Altogether, it’s a cozy little place that feels like your home among family and friends.
-Grant Wetmore