In light of the struggles that local businesses have faced during the pandemic, members of the Editorial Board highlight Davis establishments that are meaningful to us
Anjini Venugopal, Editor-in-Chief
The first time I went to Taqueria Guadalajara was well after I moved to an apartment only 0.2 miles away from it. After telling some friends—at an Aggie Couch Concert actually—that I had never been to Guads, they insisted we walk from central Davis all the way back to North Davis for me to get a burrito. Their super burrito al pastor, my regular order, is incredible and I would highly recommend getting a bag of chips with a few salsas of your choice (they’re all great and you can’t go wrong with picking any of them, but I’d suggest their pico de gallo and salsa verde). Guads quickly became a constant in our apartment, joining us before finals study sessions and after nights out. Just before everything shut down in March of last year and we realized we may not be returning to Davis for a while, my roommates and I picked up one last burrito. Supporting your local businesses is always vital, but especially now, so the next time you are in the market for a burrito or just in the mood to support Davis businesses, go to Guads.
Margo Rosenbaum, Managing Editor
Sweet and Shavery never fails to satisfy my cravings for a sweet treat. As someone with a sizable sweet tooth, I love walking into the quaint shop situated on E St—my nose instantly filling with the delicious scents of custard, fresh fruit and Nutella. With their reasonable prices, friendly workers and delicious sweet options, Sweet and Shavery is one of my favorite small businesses in downtown. My housemate swears by their banana Italian ice, but I always buy their chocolate and vanilla frozen custard swirl (adorned with a waffle cone, of course). If you have yet to try frozen custard, I highly recommend it. The dessert’s thick texture and rich taste are incredible—creating an experience far superior to its wannabe cousins frozen yogurt and ice cream. While I tend to only order custard, the shop’s milkshakes and crepes are phenomenal as well. As the warmer months approach, a cup of frozen custard from Sweet and Shavery is sure to cool you off and brighten your day.
Sabrina Habchi, Campus News Editor
The Davis Food Co-Op is a magical place. I remember when I first walked in, I was instantly transported to the local grocery store I used to work at back home—the only difference being that store was right off the 101 and overlooked the ocean (yes, I am from San Diego). Still, the atmosphere and the characteristics are the same: quality, local produce and food items, an excellent liquor selection and delicious deli options. The Co-Op goes even one step further and has phenomenal sushi prepared daily by Mermaid Sushi, another small business. The Co-Op is where I have grocery store shopping dates with some of my best friends, where I walked to during the pandemic when I wasn’t getting any exercise and where I bought my first beer the day I turned 21. I highly recommend visiting the Davis Food Co-Op at least once—it is an excellent way to support a small business that allows other small businesses to flourish by supplying their products.
Eden Winniford, City News Editor
The last restaurant I dined-in at before the pandemic shut everything down was the Davis Sushi Buffet. It was my first time at a sushi buffet, and I loved the little boats that paraded plates of sushi and steamed buns around the bar. My boyfriend and I went on a Saturday night, and I must have eaten over 30 steamed buns—I especially recommend the custard-filled buns, but I also love their pork buns. Neither of us had cars, so we basically crawled back to our dorm building because we were too full to walk. We vowed to never eat that much again, but when Sunday rolled around, we found ourselves practically inhaling steamed buns at the buffet. As soon as I feel comfortable dining in again, eating way too many steamed buns at the Davis Sushi Buffet is the first thing on my list.
Calvin Coffee, Opinion Editor
With an entire menu of plant-based fast food, Burger Patch (BP) is a vegan’s paradise and has become one of my favorite spots in Downtown Davis since they opened last spring. My go-to order is their classic Patch Burger and fries—with their fabulous ranch on the side of course. For the adventurous, BP also has an incredible “secret” menu where almost every possible combination of their ingredients resides. If you’ve never had a plant-based burger before, try BP and see if you might consider incorporating more meat and dairy alternatives in your diet—if you hate it, at least you’re supporting a local business. BP’s existence in Davis again proves that we have a community that supports sustainability, which is something we should all support and be proud of. (And not to nerd out or anything, but BP even goes the extra mile to make sure their straws and cups are also plant-based). In a town known for its cows, the burger that has nothing to do with dairy is the one for me—and the sustainability of our planet. Also, their Patch Mac (and cheese) is on the seasonal menu this spring, it’s fantastic.
Sophie Dewees, Features Editor
An over 60-year-old establishment, the Davis Varsity Theatre is a staple of downtown Davis and will always be one of my favorite local businesses. I first fell in love with the velvet seats, draping curtains and Art Deco architecture last year. Before the pandemic, I visited the two-screen film house as often as possible, viewing titles such as “Jojo Rabbit, “The Lighthouse” and “Parasite.” Although theatres in Davis have yet to be able to reopen safely, Varsity offers the ability to rent newly-released films in support of the theatre. While nothing compares to experiencing films for the first time in person, renting is an option that allows members of the Davis community to not only support a historic local business but also view unique, thought-provoking films that they may not otherwise see. Looking forward, I’m hopeful that Varsity will be able to safely reopen in the near future and once again bring together students and community members alike to sit in anticipatory silence, waiting for a film to begin.
Allie Bailey, Arts & Culture Editor
When I first discovered this gem of a clothing store last summer, I couldn’t stop talking about it—I told everyone I could, even people who don’t live in Davis. I knew Treehouse Vintage was different when I left with not one, but two trendy, high-quality items that I had been searching for the past three months. Not to mention, Kenny, owner and founder of the secondhand co-op, was so kind and accommodating that it felt like we were old friends by the time I left the store. The next time I went—which I believe was later that week—I did some damage to my bank account, but considering what I picked up, it could’ve been so much worse. Coming from the Bay Area, where prices are hiked as if everyone were making a Silicon Valley salary, vintage clothing is usually out of my price range. But the stuff at Treehouse is actually affordable, especially for one of the best curated collections of vintage apparel I’ve seen. There are racks from vendors from all over the area that are consistently re-stocked, and on Instagram (@treehousevtg) they post their best new stuff almost daily. I’ve had to hold myself back from going too much after my bender last summer (I think my record is three times in one week), but every time I let myself go, Kenny is there with a warm welcome and a prime selection of items to fall in love with.
Omar Navarro, Sports Editor
Opening almost 10 years ago, G Street Wunderbar has become a staple in Davis for a variety of reasons. From its game nights, live music and much more, it has served as a fun local spot for the residents of Davis. Even if you aren’t particularly interested in drinking to the events they host, it is a great place to watch any sporting event that’s on. Before the pandemic, I have many memories meeting with friends to watch many football and basketball games. Their TVs and projectors make it almost impossible to not see, and their seating arrangements made sure everyone was into the game. Whether it was going with others, or going by myself, it was a friendly environment where I was able to interact with others that had similar interests as me. What stood out to me in particular about this location was the food. Being an avid BBQ fan myself, I had an amazing time trying all the different foods like the Mac and Cheese Angus Burger, pulled pork sandwiches and many other BBQ favorites. I really appreciated the fact that Davis in general has many different food options for many moods, but because of my likings, G Street Wunderbar had me hooked. I look forward to catching up with others and watching a game while eating some BBQ once again, once it is safe to do so.
Madeleine Payne, Science Editor
Situated next to Varsity Theater and under the tall green trees of 2nd Street, Mishka’s Cafe has managed to remain a vibrant community center for students and locals alike—even during the pandemic. On a warm afternoon, you can find masked students studying at the small outdoor tables lining the sidewalk and neighboring alleyway, carefully placed six feet apart to promote social distancing. Though the inside of the iconic red brick building is no longer packed with folks reading the newspaper and old friends catching up over coffee, customers can still admire the local artwork displayed on the walls while waiting for their cup to-go. Especially during the chaos of week 10, Mishka’s is one of my favorite study spots to sip on a rose latte and enjoy the fresh Davis air, a short moment of peace before cramming for finals in the week ahead. My brief visits there now remind me of studying with friends during pre-pandemic times, and I look forward to the (hopefully soon) times I’ll be able to reconnect with them over a cup of coffee.
Written by: The Editorial Board