Six months is usually considered the earliest a new restaurant, craft cocktail lounge or coffee bar can receive a fair review. By then the kinks should have been worked out, the bad apples fired and the best dishes and drinks refined. But who’s got time for that? Starting this month, Metro will spotlight five new places we think are worth giving a look-see.

1.    Kali Greek Kitchen
With an aesthetic reminiscent of the blue-and-white breeziness of Santorini, Palo Alto’s Kali Greek Kitchen serves up a fresh take on traditional Mediterranean fare. At a reasonable price point, too, with pitas starting at $10.
451 California Ave, Palo Alto, 408.272, 6950

2.    San Patricios
This downtown San Jose pub was christened after a notorious battalion of Irish immigrants, former slaves and U.S. Army defectors who fought on the Mexican side of the Mexican-American War of 1846. With Micheladas and Irish Sours, San Patricio’s drink menu pays homage to the cross-cultural band of fighters.
81 E San Fernando St, San Jose, 408.800.8118

3.    Steins Beer Garden
This mash-up between German beer garden and California sports bar boasts a wide-ranging offering of 20 house staples and 15 rotating taps—something for everyone. Like its sister site in Mountain View, Stein’s offers everything from fresh-baked soft pretzels ($7) to its signature “breakfast for dinner” dish with Jameson waffles topped with cured pork belly and maple Dijon ($17).
10088 N Wolfe Rd, Suite 130, Cupertino, 408.564.6122

4.    Academic Coffee
San Jose’s coolest new coffee shop began as a pop-up cafe inside Five Points cocktail lounge. Academic Coffee has since expanded into its own brick and mortar location, and it’s fast becoming a routine stop for patrons craving a mint or coconut twist to their caffeine fix.
499 S Second St, San Jose, 408.418.6397

5.    Saratoga Corner Cafe
Opened earlier this year by brothers Esam and Milad Shaquir, Saratoga Corner Cafe delivers healthy bites with a Mediterranean-Middle Eastern spin. Try the six-side sampler ($14), which comes with house-baked pita, tabbouleh, hummus and labne yogurt.
12019 Saratoga-Sunnyvale Rd, Saratoga, 408.352.5445