BACKYARD BREW (Palo Alto, CA) – Yet another coffee spot that I discovered through a friend’s Instagram! I’ll admit that the hanging umbrellas is what drew me in – they remind me of the hanging umbrellas in Portugal – that and the fact that it was this hidden outdoor coffee shop in Palo Alto.
It’s an in alley near Terun, and the only way you really know it’s there is because of the sign! You walk down the alley, and people have written what they’ve wanted alongside the walls. The alley opens up to this hidden treasure of a place. It’s a cool outdoor patio with music playing, tables to hang out, and of course, the umbrellas.
The owner of the shop wanted to design a space that takes you away from the bustle of Palo Alto and have a space to escape your worries. He wanted to have a space where the vibe is fun and free, so customers are more than welcome to draw and write whatever they want on the walls or even the tables! The tables are covered with tents, so you can either bring a friend to chill with or get out of the office for a change of pace while still getting work done.
While we were waiting for a couple of others to order their drinks, the owner let us sample their house made lemonade, which were mint lemonade and hibiscus lemonade. I liked the hibiscus since it was sweet and tart, but of course, the mint one was my favorite. It was so refreshing with the mint and not too sweet. I would’ve just ordered that but I came here for the coffee!
After a little deliberation, I ordered the iced Nutella mocha. I wanted to get a warm drink for the aesthetics, but it was a super hot day and I needed to cool off. When I first sipped it, it felt pretty bitter, but you just have to mix it a little and then all of that hazelnut sweetness comes together. This drink is on the sweeter side (which I personally enjoyed), but I know that’s not for everyone. The coffee is also nice and strong (thanks to the Middle Eastern roasts they serve), so I was set for the rest of the day.
We headed over to a table that had life size checkers out, which ended up being more fun that I thought. Though I’m super competitive, I ended up losing to my sister, the checkers champ. I swear we’ve been playing the same game for years and I still lose. Fail. They also have life-size Jenga and even a big TV to play a bunch of video games!
This was such a cool spot to discover. It feels like you’ve left Palo Alto but it strangely fits in with the older, eclectic shops of California Avenue. I do wonder what they do during the colder and wet months, but I can’t wait to come back one of these days!