Willow Glen, originally its own town, is a little neighborhood that has managed to maintain a small-town feel despite being incorporated into San Jose in 1936. In previous years, Willow Glen was nearly divided by railway and expressway proposals designed to run through town. Each proposal was thwarted by citizens who were determined to keep their town from being torn apart. The unity and dedication to preserving the past has created a distinct charm that is felt immediately upon walking down the main street of Lincoln Avenue.
Icicles serves customizable rolled ice cream that was made popular by street vendors in Thailand. Cream is poured onto a frozen metal surface and add-ins such as Nutella, matcha, or fresh berries are mixed in. Once thoroughly combined, the ice cream is spread into a thin layer and then rolled up and placed into a cup. An extensive number of toppings can be added, including mochi, roasted marshmallows, aloe, and cereal. Plenty of time should be allotted for waiting in line because this place draws quite a crowd.
Hicklebee’s is an award-winning children’s bookstore that also has a growing variety of books for adults. In addition to bringing in authors for book signings and events, this bookstore allows book clubs to register and receive 20 percent off their current book selection. Hicklebee’s also serves as a sort of book museum that helps to bring the books they sell to life, displaying items such as the Indian in the cupboard, the traveling pants, and illustrations with signatures from authors.
Stephan Shelton, Jimmy Marino, and Philippe Breneman of The Lexington House in Los Gatos joined with Don Durante of Cascal in Mountain View to create a French brasserie in downtown Willow Glen. This restaurant takes its culinary cues from the amazing produce available in northern California, using fresh ingredients to create delicious meals that are offered at a reasonable price. This dining experience is not one to be missed.
The Source is a juice bar that offers a variety of cold-pressed juices along with açaí bowls, salads, soups, and raw ice cream. Their mission is to serve food that nourishes the mind, body, and soul. All ingredients are organic and locally sourced when possible.
Ibiss is a boutique that was opened by Ibi Oluwole, who was born in Nigeria and raised in San Jose. Oluwole handpicks each item in her store and also sells her own jewelry designs. Ibiss contains a mix of sweet pieces perfect for a high schooler headed to prom and classic pieces that are suitable for any age and profession. This boutique reflects the mindset of Silicon Valley—that fashion should be comfortable, casual, and easy to wear.
Explore more of Willow Glen with the hashtag #ExploreWillowGlen, or discover all of Silicon Valley with the hashtag #ContentExplore.
Written by Elle Mitchell
Photos by Daniel Garcia, Arabela Espinoza, and Elle Mitchell