Breakfast Showdown

After waking up, the last thing anyone wants to do is labor over the stovetop to cook breakfast, even if the alternative is an unsatisfactory bowl of cereal. So, most opt to skip the meal in favor of a quick fix provided by coffee chains like Starbucks. But if you’re looking for something more substantial, try one of these three breakfast places.


Tucked into a small shopping center on Diamond Bar Boulevard, Bageloo’s plain, grungy outward appearance had me wary. To my surprise, behind that unassuming storefront was a quaint yet modern cafe filled with the scent of freshly roasted coffee beans and baked pastries.

I ordered an affogato ($5) and an Everything Bagel ($1.30) with cream cheese.

Accompanying me were my sister, who ordered the same thing as I, and my father, who had a lox bagel sandwich ($9.75) and black coffee ($2.25).

There was a lack of seating, but we managed to find a table in the busy cafe where we waited for our food to arrive. The bagels came first, delightfully simple in their flavor, but less chewy than a traditional bagel. The lox sandwich was also amazing, with generous amounts of salmon and well-placed capers. The real highlight of our visit, though, was the coffee which, although pricier, was the smoothest I’ve had in my life.

If I ever find myself craving a bagel, Bageloo will now be at the top of my list.


Restaurants are beyond the days of sacrificing food quality for convenience, and no place epitomizes this change better than Native Fields. Located in Walnut, their food is made with ingredients from local farmers markets. However, the freshness comes at a price.

Before the cost, the greatest caveat to this restaurant is the wait—my sister and I waited 20 minutes in front of the restaurant without seating. Their food is worth the wait, though.

The apple pie pancakes ($13) I ordered had a variety of interesting and delicious aspects, such as the orange syrup, well-cooked and spiced apples, whipped creme fraiche and the lemon ricotta pancakes themselves. They may have been more worth the cost if I were able to finish the unnecessarily large three-pancake portion, so it may be better to share a plate.

Native Field’s coffee was also tasty, but lacking in consistency—my sister’s vanilla latte ($5.50) was practically just sugared milk in light of my $4.50 latte’s bitterness, which was remedied with four sugar packets to reveal a wonderful flavor with notes of toasted nuts.

Overall, if you’re willing to shell out a little more money, Native Fields is worth a visit, especially with their variety of heartier meals.


Inspired by the amazing Yelp reviews and recommendations from fellow students, my sister, mother and I visited Julie’s Cafe for what we assumed would be a quick, delicious breakfast. We were sorely mistaken.

After placing our simple order of two bagels with cream cheese ($1.50), a Strawbanana smoothie ($5), and two vanilla lattes ($3.45), we waited 40 minutes before being served. 

The jalapeno bagel and everything bagel were the highlights of our visit, with delicious chewy crusts and just the right amount of toppings. Julie’s Cafe also offers a variety of bagel sandwiches for  a more substantial breakfast, such as aWestern bagel featuring eggs, ham, cheese and a variety of vegetables.

Next to arrive was my Strawbanana smoothie, which was a sweet, watery, flavorless waste of $5 that left me deeply unsatisfied. Last and certainly least were the lattes, which smelled of rubbing alcohol and had notes of paint thinner. I managed two sips—the second to verify that I

wasn’t insane—before I threw the whole thing away. The same went for my sister, who compared it to hotel coffee.

Unless I’m craving a bagel, I don’t think I will ever return to Julie’s Cafe, whose wait times and beverages were sub-par.