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All Night Long


The succulent smell of divinely cooked delights remains the stuff of late-night local legends here in Santa Cruz, much like the Mystery Spot and the Giant Gopher. You won't have to wait too long to find a booth etched with your name on it. Shout about Shadowbrook all you want, but I hope my Sadie Hawkins date takes me to a cozy mid-county all-night mainstay because that defines class and ambiance. Why do you think all the cops eventually end up at these spots at least once a day during their daily rounds? Whenever I devour my fourth meal of the day to maintain my big-boned figure, it's not uncommon to be seated next to 43 percent of the county's entire police force. Some friends of mine are leery of the police-state dining hall mentality, but let's all walk toward the light and confront our fears. I haven't spotted any police dogs in the booth next to me yet, but who needs doggy bags--let the dogs eat kibbles and cake!

The second phase you'll most likely encounter while spending time here is that you'll actually try to flirt with death by behaving suspiciously--you'll keep your hands roaming wildly in your trench coat while memorizing the collective works of the Unabomber. Next, you'll probably start talking out loud to your hearty helping of mac and cheese in an Arsenio Hall-like voice as you stab it senseless with three utensils. I don't recommend dining and ditching either, because no one's ever made it in one piece past Capitola Road--it's a culinary Alcatraz.

The final and most beautiful phase is just kicking back and admiring the happy regulars that call this place home. Many elderly people soak in the good feelings here now that the monarchy's been beheaded over at King's Table. Several days a week, I have the monster tuna sandwich for dinner and return later for a midnight snack and the same old-timers are still arguing about the bake sale fiasco of '73. One thing my mother always told me was to respect my elders, so if they dig this restaurant, I dig it. The waitresses always keep me happily jacked up on caffeine with free soda refills so I'm quite sure there is a heaven--and it's carbonated. The soups are worthy and absolutely essential. Whether you're a senior in studies or in life, follow the heavenly aromas and enjoy a real cool time.
--Matt Kourmaras

Late-Night Spots

7-Eleven--Nine locations throughout Santa Cruz County

1515 Ocean St., Santa Cruz (831/426-4628); 6014 Scotts Valley Dr, Scotts Valley (831/438-2023)

Ferrell's Donut Shop
2227 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/423-3448); 1403 Ocean St., Santa Cruz (831/423-9470)

Jeffrey's Restaurant
2050 Soquel Ave., Capitola (831/425-1485)

105 Laurel, Santa Cruz (831/425-1177); 3555 Clares, Capitola (831/476-1483)

Lucky Food Center
1475 41st Ave., Capitola (831/462-6917)

Safeway--Six locations throughout Santa Cruz County.

Santa Cruz Diner
9090 Ocean St., Santa Cruz (831/426-7151).

24-Hour Fitness--Not open every hour of every day, but close enough.
1261 Soquel Ave, Santa Cruz (831/454-0333)

Tiny's Family Restaurant
1549 41st Ave., Capitola (831/475-5864)

135 Laurel, Santa Cruz (831/471-0555)

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From the September 24-30, 1998 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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