Chain Eats: Peet’s Coffee & Tea

They have a large retail section for coffee beans and tea leaves.  Coffee is good, and the store feels welcoming.  Staffs are friendly and helpful with coffee selections.

My ratings: ❤❤❤❤
Price range: $

Hibiscus Breeze Tea Cooler
A bit too sweet.
Coffee

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Peet’s Coffee & Tea
Various locations.
www.peets.com/

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Chain Eats: Mister Softee

Still the creamy soft served ice cream like the ones I had back at home.  Too bad the American Mister Softee doesn’t have music in the ice-cream truck.

My ratings: ❤❤❤❤
Price range: $

Soda float
Didn’t really float.  I heard you need to use diet coke to make the ice cream float.

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Mister Softee
Various locations.
www.mistersoftee.com/

Chain Eats: Emack & Bolio’s

It’s an ice-cream specialty store that originated from Boston.  Their stores are marked with very hippie and colourful artsy decorations.  Price is steep but quality is good here.  Besides ice cream, they also sell ice-cream cakes, chocolate, a variety of decorated waffle cones, smoothies and more.

My ratings: ❤❤❤❤
Price range: $

Mascot

Citrus cooler
Orange juice, lemon sorbet, raspberries, sparkling water
Made with real fruits, and it was very smooth and thick. I’m also glad it’s not oversweet.

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Emack & Bolio’s
Various locations.
www.emackandbolios.com/

Chain Eats: Au Bon Pain

Wasn’t wowed by their pastries, and their store-made drinks were either oversteeped (the iced tea) or it was overly sweet (iced peach tea).  Really not very impressed with the food here but it often appears to be a welcoming choice when you just need a quick bite to go.

My ratings: ❤❤
Price range: $

Strawberry and cheese croissant
The croissant was hard, wasn’t too flaky.  The cheese was watery and flavourless.  I don’t know what kind of cheese it is, it just made me feel like biting into uncooked soggy dough.  At least the strawberry tasted fresh.

Lobster Salad Sandwich
Over 1/4 pound of lobster and mayo in our new buttery croissant
Au Bon Pain originated from Boston so this lobster salad sandwich fit its origin (well it is also available in all stores that’s outside of Boston).  The roll was pretty full of the finely shredded/small chunks of lobster.  There’s a bit too much mayonnaise.  The filling wasn’t too bad in taste but the pastry was disappointing again — cold, somewhat soggy, and just wasn’t flaky.  If the pastry was in better quality this sandwich would taste a lot better.

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Au Bon Pain
Various locations.
www.aubonpain.com/

Chain Eats: Rita’s Italian Ice

Bad Italian Ice.  Just look at the huge ice pieces!  The staff also used the same piece of cloth to wipe off the paper cup for every order. Gross!

My ratings:
Price range: $

Swedish Fish

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Rita’s Italian Ice
Various locations.
www.ritasice.com/

Chain Eats: Phillips Seafood

This was based from my experience at Phillips Seafood Express.  It was horrible.  Food was more or less pre-made already, but it took over 50 minutes to get my order.  The line wasn’t even too long, but everyone had to wait a long time for their order.  Food was just cafeteria quality.  Overpriced and not even that great.  Avoid this place like the plaque!! You’re better off to go and sit in an actual restaurant than wait an hour in a so-called “express” line.

My ratings:
Price range: $-$$

Phillips Crab Pretzel
Baked soft pretzel topped with crab meat, three cheeses & seasoning
This was the culprit of the 50+ min wait.  It was frozen so I needed to wait until the staff *finally* have time to put it in the oven for 10 min (plus waiting time, packing time etc), and along with another customer’s crab pretzel order.  There’s nothing good about it.  It’s not even a real pretzel roll, just a normal dinner roll-like bread that’s very doughy (possibly underbaked?).  The cheese was very manufactured.  You can’t find the crab.

Maryland vegetable crab soup
Again you can’t find the crab.  I can only assume the tiny miniscule white shreds are the crab meat.  I’ve seen thicker shredded strings from imitation crab meat than this.

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Phillips Seafood
www.phillipsseafood.com/

Chain Eats: Caribou Coffee

It’s an inviting coffeehouse full of colourful decorations and has a nice ambience.  They put up a daily trivia and you can win a prize if you’re the first to guess the right answer.  Menu selection is quite limited (both food and drinks).  There isn’t too many coffee selections (latte, cappucino, espresso, iced coffee. Period.)  Coffee is very bad here.  Food tasted very mass produced.  I wanted to like this place but their food quality turned me down.

My ratings:
Price range: $

White Peach Berry Smoothie
This was the only thing I tried that was good.  It was thick and filling, and not terribly oversweetened.

Chicken apple sausage daybreaker
Everything tasted mass produced.  The cheese tasted like processed cheese (and stuck on the wrap the same way McD’s cheeseburger was like).  Bread was alright but defintiely not bakery quality.  If you want a quick fast food breakfast then get this, or you can also walk to another nearby fast food chain store and it won’t make much of a difference.

Cappuccino
Should have known they would just give me a paper cup.  The coffee was very bad tasting, and the milk foam got stuck to the side of the cup.  It tasted like soap sud.

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Caribou Coffee
Various locations.
www.cariboucoffee.com/

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