Hotdogs, burgers, nachos and ice cream—this Dempsey eatery is great for kids, as it is linked with Ben & Jerry’s. When we arrived, there was a little girl desperately trying to open the freezer door that contained tubs of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. There were expat housewives with their brood in tow after a grocery shopping trip.

This place made us feel like big kids, so we sat outside on a table with a swing for a seat. You have to order inside and the smell of freshly baked muffins and pound cakes got us all excited. The menu here is simple—sandwiches, soups and salads. This place is more of a patisserie and ice cream parlor than a proper restaurant. We had the “in-coming” burger with melted cheese, perfect for a mid-day snack. However the meat was a little on the rare side and a bit gamey.

The desserts here were dreamy, both in presentation and taste. We’d intended to share and the hot fudge mud cake between ourselves, but the mud cake—a moistened chocolate cake shaped like a well and filled with gooey fudge—was so wicked that sharing was impossible. CA California’s interior may not match up to the more sophisticated concept diners in the area, but when it comes to the grub, this place stands by its motto—”Live well. Do good. Kick ass.”