Archive for the ‘Coffee’ Category

Free Coffee at Panera Bread – January 28

Panera Bread is offering free coffee this Wednesday, January 28, 2009. You will have a choice of its new Light and Dark Roast coffees, as well as samples of its three grilled breakfast sandwiches and new Strawberry Granola Parfait.

Panera Bread will also invite customers to donate a dollar on January 28 to help support its Operation Dough-Nation Community Breadbox program. Participating bakery-cafes will join the celebration by matching customer donations made on that day. Donations support local programs that address community needs.

These participating locations are also Free Wi-Fi Hotspots:

503 Coleman Avenue
San Jose, 95110
(408) 299-0993

2199 Monterey Highway #80
San Jose, 95112
(408) 286-1755

501 East Hamilton Avenue
Campbell, 95008
(408) 370-7840

20807 Stevens Creek Boulevard
Cupertino, 95014
(408) 996-9131

43317 Christy Street
Fremont, 94538
(510) 440-7020

2650 Mowry Avenue
Fremont, 94538
(510) 742-1200

24133 Southland Drive
Hayward, 94545
(510) 732-0279

6865 Camino Arroyo
Gilroy, 95020
(408) 846-7430

For more information and other locations, check here.

Free e-waste recycling day Saturday

Photo by Bert van Dijk,

This Saturday, pick up some free coffee and save the environment at the same time.

The Phi Mu chapter of Mu Phi Epsilon will be coordinating a free e-waste recycle day as a fundraiser for the organization, SJSU’s music fraternity.

Green Mouse Recycling is making this happen at its Santa Clara headquarters, and here’s a list of things you can bring to the event:

  • Computers/Laptops/Servers
  • Televisions/Monitors
  • DVD/CD Players
  • Fax Machines/Printers
  • Wire/Cabling/Printed Circuit Boards
  • Aluminum/Scrap Metal/Plastic Products
  • Microwave Ovens


Saturday, December 13th
10:00 AM – 2:00 PM

292 Brokaw Road
Santa Clara, 95050

Vote for Free Coffee – Doughnut – Ice Cream

After you vote Tuesday, head on over to Starbucks, Krispy Kreme, and Ben & Jerry’s for your free goodies!

At Starbucks tell the barista you voted and receive a free tall (12 oz) cup of brewed coffee.

If there is a Krispy Kreme in your area, take your coffee with you to pick up your free star-shaped doughnut.

In the evening between 5:00 pm and 8:00 pm head on over to Ben & Jerry’s for a free scoop of ice cream.

Limit one per customer at all of the establishments mentioned (participating locations).

California Elections Code section 18521 (b) prohibits rewarding people for voting or not voting. The law was created to prevent any form of bribery for voting (or not voting) through free food, gifts, loans, or money. Thus, you need not prove you voted to receive the free item.

Starbucks locations: where isn’t there a Starbucks.

Ben & Jerry’s locations, check here.

Krispy Kreme locations:

Mountain View
2146 Leghorn Street, 94043

Union City
32450 Dyer Street, 94587

1441 Fitzgerald Drive, 94564

Daly City
1575 Sullivan Ave., 94015

They come and they go

The downtown La Boulanger bakery and coffee shop has closed.

The downtown La Boulanger bakery and coffee shop has closed.

Just a couple of weeks after I wrote about the opening of Caffe Trieste, and the overall improvement in the availability of good coffee in downtown San Jose, two of the local coffee outlets seem to have closed. The first one I noticed was La Boulanger on Market St., near San Fernando. La Boulanger’s coffee wasn’t quite to the level of Peet’s or Trieste’s, but if you wanted a pastry or sandwich with your coffee, La Boulanger wasn’t a bad choice.

eMocha cafe is another casualty among downtown coffee shops.

eMocha cafe is another casualty among downtown coffee shops.

Second, just today I saw a sign in the window of eMocha cafe, or maybe it was called Backdoor Espresso (they couldn’t seem to make that clear), indicating they’re “closed for now.” Hopefully that means they’re just cleaning up the decor, or rejigging the financing, and they’ll be back soon. For coffee made with obsessive attention to detail, eMocha, or maybe “Backdoor Espresso”, was the place downtown for a couple of months anyway.

On the positive side, I recently tried the relatively new Crema cafe on the Alameda, just a few blocks from downtown. The coffee was good, and the place is huge, with lots of indoor and outdoor tables. Stop in some time and check it out.

Caffe Trieste grand opening

Sonia Giotta, daughter of the founder of Caffe Trieste, speaks at the grand opening of San Joses new Caffe Trieste store, while the new stores owner and the Berkeley store owner look on.

Sonia Giotta, daughter of the founder of Caffe Trieste, speaks at the grand opening of San Jose's new Caffe Trieste store, while the new store's owner and the Berkeley store owner look on.

In an event I’ve been anticipating for months, really since I had the best Americano ever at the Berkeley Caffe Trieste more than a year ago, Caffe Trieste‘s new San Jose store held its grand opening today. I’d heard the San Jose store was “coming soon” early this year, and I had been checking the storefront regularly for signs of life. Apparently I didn’t check often enough, because they actually opened a couple of weeks ago, and I didn’t know about it until I saw the grand opening party announced in the Mercury this morning.

The North Beach Caffe Trieste house band was there, and it was planned for the head of the Caffe Trieste family, “Papa Gianni” Giotta to be on hand and sing his favorite operatic arias. Unfortunately, Papa Gianni fell ill at the last moment, and wasn’t able to attend. His daughter Sonia was there, along with Arturo (whose last name I missed), owner of the Berkeley store.

Tenor Christopher Bengochea performed an aria from Rigoletto.

Tenor Christopher Bengochea performed an aria from Rigoletto.

Papa Gianni’s musical place was taken by Christopher Bengochea, a much-praised tenor, recently with Opera San Jose. Lory Stark, recently with San Jose Civic Light Opera, also performed a pair of arias.

The new store is centrally located on 1st Street, near San Carlos. They have plenty of seating, with a ground floor and upper balcony. About six staff behind the counter were struggling to keep up with the party crowd, but remained in control. The coffee was excellent, dark espresso, served in Italian style. A macchiato here is a single espresso, “marked” with a dollop of dry milk foam, not a syrupy flavored drink. If you like Peet’s, you’ll definitely want to stop in and try Caffe Trieste.

With the long-awaited arrival of Peet’s, eMocha Cafe across from City Hall, Bijan near Plaza Cesar Chavez, and now Caffe Trieste, downtown San Jose now has plenty of great coffee shops to choose from.

It’s a Starbucks ‘Kind’ of Earth Day


Starbucks Press Room: On April 22nd Starbucks will donate 5-cents to Conservation International for every purchase made that day with a Starbucks Card. Read about it here. If you bring your travel mug (save the paper) into the Starbucks on Los Gatos Blvd today and tomorrow you will receive a raffle ticket for a chance to win a fantastic Earth Day Basket. 14801 Los Gatos Blvd, Los Gatos, CA 95032 Between Samaritan Dr/Burton Rd and S Bascom Ave – Look around back for the underground parking garage

Sharp Cookies In San Jose


I met Nina Hautumm while waiting in the lobby of the San Jose Repertory Theatre. We were both there to see the World Premier of Sherman’s Way. I discovered that Nina herself was a moviemaker. Sharp Cookies is a short comedy (17 minutes) and is one of the winners of the ‘Vuze Audience Favorites.’ I told her that I would catch it on Sunday.

Reaching into her Cinequest Gift Bag, she came up with a 12oz bag of Peet’s Coffee. She asked, “Do you like coffee?” Nina doesn’t drink coffee is the reason she gave it to me.

Nina asked me, “Where are the shops?” She wanted to pick up a few things, maybe some new shoes. Without going into the whole where in the heck are the shops in San Jose debate, I directed her to Santana Row and Valley Fair.

Sharp Cookies

Vuze Audience Favorites

Changes Brewing at Starbucks

logo_top.gif Dear Mr. Schultz,

Regarding the changes coming to a Starbucks near me, I have been warned that the warmed breakfast sandwiches will be discontinued by the end of the year. They do not fit with the pure coffee shop experience. One thing that will harmonize with coffee, and please customers, is the idea of free Wi-Fi.

I am intrigued with what you call Art of Espresso.
The three-hours of training that will refresh the baristas knowledge.

I do appreciate your efforts in keeping Espresso standards high, but why stop there? Shouldn’t every beverage made, be one of perfection?

February 26
Starbucks to close from 5:30p – 8:30p

695 Coleman Ave @ Taylor

Starbucks: Better in San Jose


After reading the post by Ryan Healy (Metroblogging Seattle) entitled, “Prediction: “Skinny” drinks from Starbucks will be off the menu in 6 months”, I was curious to try the new sugar-free Skinny.

Last night I stopped in at a local Starbucks on my way up to SFO. I ordered a Skinny Mocha, and a regular Mocha just in case the Skinny was as wretchedly bad as Ryan had reported. I braced myself for the worst and took a sip. It was good. More than good, this was a drink I would order again.

Could this be an example of the old saying, it’s the singer not the song? Could it be, it’s the barista not the drink? Better yet, can San Jose do coffee better than Seattle?

Mug Shot of San José

I found a San José coffee mug at my local Starbucks. It has been included in the Starbucks Architect Series. So now I can sip my morning joe out of the “Capital of Silicon Valley” for the mere pittance of only $9.95. You might note City Hall is not featured or even seen peeking out from behind the Knight Ridder building. A good thing? I should have bought more to sell on eBay. But most of all, I am just pleased to find anything in the South Bay that does not depict a San Francisco Cable Car or Victorian!

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