Quick Caffeine Fix: Philz in San Mateo


If you find a free table, preferably near an outlet, you’re set at Philz – that is, when you’re in San Mateo. Which is emblematic of most branches of the Bay Area-borne chain where coffee orders are tweaked until customers approve.

This approach to customer service bleeds somewhat into cafe ambiance. Of all the nearby chains, it’s got the most agreeable pitch of vivre and studiousness. The AC isn’t on crazy blast, and you just might get an enjoyable rotation of early 90s R&B.

All throughout weekends, and on certain parts of weekdays, Philz becomes a quasi preschool with kids under seven running about. Fellow guests have a tendency to camp out, however unabashedly with takeout brought into Philz halfway into a study session. Juicing up your Asus, or Kindle, is only smart.

Philz: 113 S B St, San Mateo; (650) 931-1770. [map]

Ambiance: Busy… Or perhaps it’s buzzy? (You know, because of the caffeine?)
Amenities: Restrooms for hers and hims. WiFi. Several outlets.
Drink/Food: Great for discerning coffee enthuasists as there’s a range of roasts to order. A barista will make sure your coffee tastes right, not stopping until it does. Healthier snacks like instant oatmeal and yogurt.