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Davis, California

Saturday, May 25, 2024

On my plate: Where to study in downtown Davis based on oddly specific autumn music moods

Welcome to fall quarter — find your next study spot here! 

By NADIA ANEES — nsanees@ucdavis.edu 

Early into fall quarter, the sunny weather and excitement of returning to campus make it easy to forget how quickly coursework and other activities can escalate. To keep up with your busy schedule, and rapidly growing to-do list, here are some great study spots around Davis to choose from, based on fall-themed musical moods. 

Philz Coffee

Song association: “The Less I Know The Better” by Tame Impala

I always imagine myself going to Philz on a sunny Friday afternoon, walking past the vibrant green lawns bordering the path from Young Hall after my last class of the week. When studying at Philz, you’re surrounded by sounds of soft chatter and excellent background music (90% of the time) and the smell of freshly-brewed coffee. Philz is your study spot if you prefer an active ambience while completing your work. When I have piles of work to get through, I order an “Ecstatic” iced coffee to keep me energized while I study. 

Temple Coffee Roasters 

Song association: “Nakamarra” by Hiatus Kaiyote 

With clean lines, earthy tones and a minimalist contemporary aesthetic, Temple is a well-loved coffee roastery with locations in its origin city of Sacramento, as well as in Folsom and Davis. Temple is a cafe for those who don’t mind paying higher prices for quality coffee and service. At Temple, I find that spots are often limited due to its popularity as a casual hangout and study spot. If you’re doing some typing on a laptop or reading and looking for a peaceful atmosphere, Temple might be the spot for you.

Pachamama Coffee

Song association: “Kids” by Current Joys 

Pachamama has a bright youthfulness that makes you feel at ease and baristas that will always make you smile. Holding a hot latte in one of Pachamama’s deep blue mugs while people-watching in front of the large windows is enough to bring your heart some glee on a gray day. And although I’m partial to stormy weather, I can affirm that the outdoor seating and sunny interior is equally as enjoyable in the spring or summer. 

Mishka’s Café

Song association: “Cheek to Cheek” by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong 

Mishka’s feels like a quintessential Davis coffee shop. It is my favorite place to bring a book to read in the early morning accompanied by my generously sized triple-shot oat milk latte. Coming to Mishka’s feels like a warm hug, perfect for when it’s gloomy outside (or when you’re feeling a bit gloomy on the inside). It has a large menu with many variations of classic espresso beverages, so you’re sure to find a drink you love, no matter your preferences.

Peet’s Coffee

Song: “Oh Devil” by Electric Guest

This is a controversial opinion, I know, but when it comes to coffee chains, Peet’s is better than Starbucks. Peet’s is reliable when you find yourself searching for a feeling of familiarity and comfort in a coffee shop. Plus, their menu can meet the needs of anyone, from the “matcha-is-the-only-caffeine-I-consume” people to “I-need-a-good-cup-of-medium-roast-black- coffee-and-I-need-it-now” people. If trying out a new coffee shop feels scary, start here. 

Cloud Forest Cafe

Song: “Woodland” by The Paper Kites

My favorite part about this quaint cafe on D Street is, honestly, how it looks. It’s a small shop with nice patio seating that gives it a perfectly cottage-core feeling. It is, in my opinion, the perfect place to people-watch while sipping hot coffee. They offer a few breakfast and lunch options that I have found are not as unique or flavorful as they should be given the price tag. As much as I enjoy sitting at Cloud Forest, I don’t recommend this cafe as a study spot. Wifi is hard to acquire, and the vibes here are generally better for a break from studying than as a place to park yourself and catch up on calculus homework. 


Song: “Always Be My Baby” by Mariah Carey

I come here to study when it’s cold at Christmas time. That is the only time. I won’t lie though, I will take a grande Starbucks iced caramel macchiato any day. 

Written by: Nadia Anees — nsanees@ucdavis.edu

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by individual columnists belong to the columnists alone and do not necessarily indicate the views and opinions held by The California Aggie.