When it's hot outside, Oaklanders have a variety of places to visit for a cool treat. Here are some of my favorites, including a few of my little secrets.
Blue Bottle's New Orleans Ice Coffee
I drink coffee every day and especially on a warm morning, caffeine on ice does the trick. The New Orleans Ice Coffee at Blue Bottle is a mix of coffee, roasted chicory, milk, and organic cane sugar. This cold brew is steeped for 12 hours and leaves you with a taste of rich coffee flavor that is sweet and creamy.
If you find yourself at this artisan ice cream shop in Fruitvale Village, try a mangonada, a frozen Mexican treat. It is a cup filled with flavored ice, mango sherbet, chunks of fresh mango, chili powder, syrup, and a tamarind candy straw. Enjoying this sweet, sour, and spicy treat will take your palate on a fun ride.
Photo Credit: 510Foodie
Holy Land Lemonade
This Greek restaurant behind the Grand Lake Theater offers fresh, made to order lemonade. Lemons are blended whole with fresh mint leaves leaving you a delicious drink that is heavy on the pulp. With a balance of sweet and tart, this lemonade is sure to quench your thirst.
Ice Cream Sandwich from Miette
Located in Jack London Square, Miette is a charming pastry shop that sells all kinds of cute treats such as cakes, cookies, and candies. I love to get their ice cream sandwiches. They usually offer a few different choices. Just hope they have the creme fraiche ice cream with graham cracker cookies when you make your visit.
Milk Tea from Saint Anna
I am not into bubble tea, but I do enjoy a good milk tea. Saint Anna is a Hong Kong style cafe in Chinatown and is my "go to" place for a Hong Kong milk tea, hot or cold. Go straight to the back of the restaurant to find one of two Chinese women who makes the perfectly balanced version of this tea. It's made of strongly brewed black Lipton tea, condensed milk, evaporated milk, and sugar.
When you order a cold milk tea, they will add ice and you are good to go for a sweet sip on a hot day. Outside of Hong Kong, I have yet to find a better milk tea. If you want tapioca balls, you'll have to look elsewhere.
2nd Street at Flavor Brigade
Flavor Brigade transports water ice from Philadelphia to the Diamond District in Oakland. Water ice is a refreshing water-based, non-dairy frozen delicacy with a rich, creamy smooth texture. At Flavor Brigade, I recommend going all out and ordering the 2nd Street which is a combination of water ice and frozen custard. I personally love the combination of black cherry ice and vanilla flavored frozen custard.
Photo Credit: 510Foodie