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“Our Favorite Cafe”
Review of Aqus Cafe

Aqus Cafe
Ranked #47 of 266 Restaurants in Petaluma
Dining options: Breakfast
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast
Petaluma, California
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Our Favorite Cafe”
Reviewed October 15, 2012

Good affordable food, friendly staff, and a great location - what more can one ask for? Good gluten free and vegetarian choices. As a cafe should, Aqus offers both coffee and tea libations as well as beer and wine options. Certainly, there is something for everyone here, including both indoor and outdoor seating options.

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
Thank Heather K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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40 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Illinois
Level Contributor
253 reviews
111 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
“Lovely Cafe for Lunch”
Reviewed October 8, 2012

Stopped by for lunch as we were passing thru Petaluma on our way to Healdsburg. Great salads and panninis. Very casual and comfortable atmosphere. Very friendly staff and clients. I highly recommend stopping in for a meal.

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank ljohns27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Petaluma
Level Contributor
23 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“This “Third Place” Wins First Place”
Reviewed September 25, 2012

Aqus is a lively and casual café in Downtown Petaluma. I like the Reuben Panini for lunch and it’s a delightful excursion from the typical dark rye. I have also lingered, people-watching or writing at a table outside with a pen and paper or laptop, an espresso drink or glass of wine. For this review I had breakfast there for the first time.

My breakfast sandwich choice was the Foundry, a generous serving of eggs, ham, avocado, tomato and Gruyère cheese on multi-grain bread. It reminded me of a piled-high sandwich that Dagwood made in the Blondie comic strip!

The latte had a swirling top and foam that I admired as a former barista at the San Francisco State U. Student Union Coffeehouse back in the 1980s. Good choice of sugars, sweeteners and creamers. Beware the chocolate and cinnamon sprinklers, however. Chocolate comes out with a sharp shake but go easy with the cinnamon, which pours more freely.

My date's Scrambled Egg Breakfast Plate was the Petaluma, with cheese and Canadian bacon. She liked that it was not a flat slice needing to be cut but rather diced chunks and embedded with diced cheddar. The fruit cup contained honeydew, cantaloupe, strawberries, blueberries and raspberries, all fresh and a nice compliment to the protein. The Sumatra coffee was bold and hot from the self-serve canister.

Service is friendly and casual. You put in your order and pay at the counter. You give your name or if it's busy or you sit outside, get a plastic table tent with a number and then the counterstaff deliver your drinks first then the food to you. I visited at about 8:15 on a Sunday and the food arrived pretty quickly.

Decor, Vibe, Philosophy

Artist Doug Ballou painted the tables in vibrant red, black and gold, drizzled like chefs do with raspberry, butterscotch and dark chocolate sauce. The smaller square tables sport chess or checkerboards. Harmonizing are the terracotta walls, the high, burgundy ceiling in industrial chic, and the attractive back bar area reminiscent of Art Nouveau Parisian style.

Aqus is inspired by Third Place (see Wikipedia) theories by Ray Oldenburg and Edward Soja, to serve as a place between the workplace and home life. Owner John Crowley envisioned a place where the “culture of community” could be “rewoven” and indeed it’s a place where independent artists and writers, stay-at-home moms and dads, musicians, business owners, city commuters, non-profit employees and volunteers mingle and exchange ideas.

You can join the Aqus Community and get a card entitling you to 10% off purchases and advance notice of members-only events and parties, lectures, mutual interest mixers and themed nights, and a login on the web site.

Aqus is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and also an “Extremely Happy Hour” 4-6:30pm Mon-Sat. There can sometimes be a line for the bathroom in the festive evening hours but you can read the bulletin board while waiting. To-go menus are available, the pastries and many items are locally-sourced, and the Happy Hour menu is sophisticated pub grub with beer and wine specials adding to the conviviality.

In sum, Aqus is a visually attractive, thoughtfully conceived place for hot food, fresh salads, hot and cold drinks, with a very cool vibe! And a sense of Community.

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank CJ N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Petaluma, California
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Great Place to eat”
Reviewed May 29, 2012

loved the salads and always interesting people! Definate must to try this place you will like it!

Visited March 2012
Helpful?
Thank Cindy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gardena, California
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“The cafe for the locals, embodies all the best of Petaluma”
Reviewed April 13, 2012

I've been here several times as I worked nearby a few years ago. I loved the quality of the food, lunch and dinner is always great and prices are unbelievably reasonable. I love the barnyard design, high ceilings, charm charm charm. Waiters and waitresses are young and hip just like the cafe. Lots of events going on. Check them out.

  • Visited May 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank valleysandbreezes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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