**I'm updating my previous review... the place is going up in my world because the people have been a bit better... and I've met the U.S. barista contest champion, Jennifer, and she's actually quite nice and not even a bit snobbish. Very service-oriented and cheery - she's a gem. It's the other guys who may miss the beat. With Black Cat Cafe closed in the area, and most of the college students gone (nothing against them, it just makes the place way too crowded), it's a nice summer hangout.**
Despite the proximity to this place (I'd say our door is less than 100 ft from it), it hadn't been the first choice on our coffee shop list. Sure, they may have the barista contest champion, they may have good coffees and atmosphere, but I feel like they take themselves too seriously - and half the time they got our orders wrong. (One time it was a regular con pana instead of decaf for my friend, another time it was mushroom quiche instead of chicken pesto quiche, etc, etc.) It's probably a sign of being old when you start thinking "kids nowadays...", but don't kids nowadays know that you're only allowed to claim to be good at something when you fulfill basic requirements?!
I'm happy they have good coffee roasted on premises, good tea selection, and spicy chai tea instead of overly sweet one, but that still doesn't make up for cashiers with too short an attention span and baristas who don't seem so thrilled to see you as they are so engaged with their art. Ultimately it's a hospitality business which is supposed to please customers, so I'd only go more often when they start getting my orders right, and they seem happy to see me spend my money there.
With that said, they have pretty good pastries, quiches, panini sandwiches and a killer mocha shake. They also have free wi-fi, so it's not a horrible choice if you are in the neighborhood and crave good coffee. And if you want to impress someone with foam art http://www.zokacoffee.com/page.php?xPage=blog/index.html on a Latte - this is the place.