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The Best Takeout in Town -- Anchorage has great takeout food. Downtown, the Muffin Man, 817 W. 6th Ave. (tel. 907/279-6836), produces some of the best meals eaten at the city's desks, including the memorably delicious smoked red salmon and cream cheese sandwich. You can eat in the sunny, tiled dining room, too, and they serve wine and local beer. The best, most original burgers are at Arctic Roadrunner, with locations on Arctic Boulevard at Fireweed Lane, and on Old Seward Highway at International Airport Road. Try the Kodiak Islander, which has peppers, ham, onion rings, and God knows what else on top. New Sagaya's City Market (tel. 907/274-6173; www.newsagaya.com), at the corner of 13th and I streets, is a wonderful gourmet grocery and community meeting place, and has a good deli, Italian-style brick-oven pizza, and familiar Chinese food that's generally good. Pack a picnic here, or eat at the enclosed or sidewalk dining areas.

Coffeehouses -- There are coffeehouses all over the city to get a cup of java and a pastry, and to meet people and engage in conversation. A favorite is Side Street Espresso, on G Street between 4th and 5th, a gathering place for artists, activists, and anyone who wants to trade ideas, sometimes with live acoustic music in the evening. Cafe del Mundo, at Northern Lights and Denali Midtown, gathers an older crowd of businesspeople, yuppies, stay-at-home parents, and those looking for a comfortable meeting spot. Kaladi Brothers has several locations with Internet access, including the classy space in the back corner of the Alaska Center for the Performing Arts downtown, at 6th Avenue and G Street. Their location on Northern Lights Boulevard between Spenard and Minnesota is extremely popular, in the same shopping center with essential stops such as Title Wave used book store and REI sporting goods store.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.