Bentley's Coffee and Tea, 1730 E. Speedway, is conveniently located less than 10 minutes from my house. So heading down Mountain Avenue and going east on Speedway before hitting Campbell is a pleasant drive where UA students have a wide bike path and the road has recently been relandscaped.
At Bentley's the parking lot offers shade and inside the ambiance is relaxed and artful. Different local artists use the wall space as a gallery and so I never know if I will be viewing butterflies, flowers or skulls (this week's offering) when I arrive. I am not an expert coffee drinker. In fact, I never drank it all until I started a work project 3 years ago that had a lot of evening meetings where I had to be focused and alert. All my colleagues drank coffee so I started with a light mixture of coffee and milk--sometimes hot, often iced. I say all that to set up the background for my admission that I don't know if Bentley's offers good coffee or not. I know they offer some specialities I like such as Hibiscus or Ginger iced teas.
Their sandwiches can be ordered as a "half" and I like the BLT ("bacon" at Bentley's is only turkey bacon but they make it crunchy and it comes in thick slabs) on four grain bread. If I am in a lighter mood, I order their hummus and pita which comes with side garnish of cucumbers, sprouts, carrots and lettuce. I really favor their breakfast which is offered any time of the day. Scrambled eggs, with toast (four grain or English muffin), fruit or potatoes (I go for the fruit) is filling. I have a wide selection of two "sides" to add to the eggs and I usually go with that turkey bacon and a veggie. If I am meeting someone there at 9 a.m., I can have the breakfast which lasts me until dinner.
One of the other elements of Bentley's I enjoy is that they have set up a place for little kids to play. Some patrons find this annoying but since I love children, I like to watch them--sometimes I sit close to the spot so I can interact a bit with them, at other times, I just fondly gaze from afar. They never push you out the door at Bentley's. Since they, as do most places now, offer free Wi-Fi, students, UA faculty and folks like me can hang out for hours, although the parking lot has a sign that discourages the practice and, depending on the season, the businesses in the areas get a bit more disciplined about making sure their parking spaces aren't used by UA students as an alternative to paying for parking on campus.
So for many reasons, I recommended "hanging out at Bentley's."