By Steph Rodriguez

Say goodbye to your sad desk lunch by stepping out of the office and into one of these eateries for a quick and delicious lunch in Downtown Sacramento and its closely surrounding areas. Choose from vegetarian and pork bahn mi sandwiches at the Golden Bear on K Street, award-winning juicy burgers at Pangaea Bier Cafe just outside the grid, or delve into a hot and hearty layered signature sandwich at the Sandwich Spot with an ice cold beer, all are waiting to satisfy your work week hunger.

The Golden Bear
2326 K St.
Sacramento, CA 95816
(916) 441-2242
https://goldenbear916.com

The Golden Bear located in Midtown is a nice spot for a quick lunch and a pint during the work week. The quaint eatery and bar also serves dinner in the evenings and brunch on the weekends. But, it’s the Golden Bear’s tacos, small plates, salads, sandwiches, and pizzas that keep the seats filled and leave the weekly work crowd satisfied. For tacos, try the carnitas. Crispy and tender pieces of marinated pork are garnished with salsa roja, pickled onion and avocado. Order two for $7.50 or bump up to three for only $10.50. Small plates include mac ‘n’ cheese, tempura oyster mushrooms, and a braised chicken quesadilla ranging from $7 to $9 a piece. Salads and sandwiches at the Golden Bear will outshine any sad desk lunch you were going to eat, try an artisan mixed green salad with a refreshing lemon vinaigrette for $10 or order the pork or vegan bahn mi with pickled vegetables and Sriracha aioli for $12. If you’re visiting with the entire office, ask your bartender or waitress what the pizza special of the day is as this eatery likes to keep its menu seasonal so the variety of toppings are always changing respectively.

The Sandwich Spot
1630 18th St.
Sacramento, CA 95811
(916) 492-2613
www.sandwichspotmidtown.com

With 15 locations that are all family owned and operated throughout the Sacramento area, the Sandwich Spot is the perfect place to grab a delicious, comforting sandwich during the busy work week. If you’re in the Midtown area, head on over to 18th and Q Streets and try No. 19, the Dosky at $8.99: hot turkey, prosciutto, avocado and Swiss cheese with everything on it including the Sandwich Spot’s spicy Bomb Sauce. This signature sando is best on a fresh-baked sweet roll, but other bread options include Dutch crunch, sourdough, and wheat rolls, sliced wheat and rye, and also lettuce wraps. Yummy sides at all locations like potato and macaroni salad are made in house, or grab a chocolate chip cookie, individual size bags of chips, and drinks include fountain sodas, juices, sweet teas, and bottled beers. All locations also offer a kids menu with choices like peanut butter and jelly, grilled cheese, or plain meat and cheese sandwiches at $4.99 each. So, make it a lunch date with your favorite little one to brighten up the week.

Meet & Eat
3445 Freeport Blvd.
Sacramento, CA 95818
(916) 476-3082
www.meetandeatsac.com

One of Sacramento’s newer eateries, Meet & Eat provides a comfortable and lush oasis away from the office to enjoy a hot lunch and perhaps an afternoon cocktail. Located near Sacramento City College on Freeport Boulevard, this restaurant and bar’s menu is quite diverse with soups, salads, sandwiches, Mexican fare, Italian pasta dishes, and bites to share. The outdoor patio is decorated with an abundance of thriving green plants and flowers that add pops of color against the eatery’s modern-style, minimalist decor. When visiting Meet & Eat for lunch, try the pork belly on a bun with crispy onion rings and barbecue sauce for $14, the spicy shrimp noodle salad with cilantro-lime marinated shrimp, cucumber, noodles, mint, bean sprouts, green onions and tomato in a sweet chili sauce for $15, or try the taco bar where patrons choose from either pork belly, crispy fish, spicy shrimp, steak, lamb, roasted sweet potato and more ranging from $13 to $15.50. On the drink menu, try either a variety of locally crafted beers from Track 7 and Sudwerk’s to cocktails like mojitos to margaritas, beverage prices vary.

Related:  Best Places For Corn Dishes In Sacramento

Pangaea Bier Cafe
2743 Franklin Blvd.
Sacramento, CA 95818
(916) 454-4942
www.pangaeabiercafe.com 

Pangaea Bier Cafe won Sacramento’s Best Burger two years in a row at the annual Burger Battle held in Cesar Chavez Park. Not only does this restaurant boast award-winning dishes, but it also has a large craft beer selection that is always changing and the menu takes up an entire wall indoors. Besides the delicious Pangaea Burger with its grilled angus patty, applewood smoked bacon, lettuce, tomato, onions, house pickles and sauce on a brioche bun with fries at $15, there’s also the Blvd. Tacos with pulled pork, onions, cilantro, and house-made salsa on corn tortillas for $9. If you’re just stopping by for a quick lunch time pint Pangaea offers only the finest craft beer on its wall-sized menu from Sacramento’s own New Glory Brewery to Santa Rosa’s Russian River Brewing, but be sure to pair a pint with a hot buttered pretzel that comes with a side of beer cheese and spicy brown mustard for $6. Beer prices vary.

Taste of Thai
1628 Broadway
Sacramento, CA 95818
(916) 444-5598
www.tasteofthaisac.com

The smell of Taste of Thai’s savory and spicy dishes carries onto the sidewalk in front of the restaurant on busy Broadway. Start lunch with an order of crispy Po Pia Tod (fried spring rolls) with vegetables and glass noodles wrapped in a soft, rice paper and deep fried at $4.95. There’s also hot and sour soup for the colder winter days with lemon grass, kaffir leaves, onions and mushrooms. Customers choose which meat option they’d prefer to be added to the soup like chicken, pork, beef or seafood and vegetarian options are always available, prices vary. The entrees at Taste of Thai are all great choices for a quick lunch and vary from curries, noodle and seafood dishes that all range in spice level, just let your server know your tolerance–if any–ahead of time. Always choose the protein first: chicken, pork, tofu, beef, or seafood, then choose the dish that sounds most satisfying like the classic noodle dish Pad Se Ew with its soft, wide rice noodles, tender broccoli and fried eggs in a rich sauce. There’s also the Gaeng Ka Ree, with a choice between vegetarian or meat protein served in a yellow curry with potatoes, carrots, onions and bell peppers. Prices vary depending on the protein choices for most dishes.

Related: Best Fish Sandwiches In Sacramento

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