Want the inside word on Sacramento's buzziest local spots?
We took a data-driven look at the question, using Yelp and SafeGraph, a dataset of commercial points of interest and their visitor patterns, to analyze which restaurants have been on the tips of diners' tongues this month.
To find out who made the list, we first looked at Sacramento businesses on Yelp by category and counted how many reviews each received. Rather than compare them based on number of reviews alone, we calculated a percentage increase in reviews over the past month, and tracked businesses that consistently increased their volume of reviews to identify statistically significant outliers compared to past performance. Then we analyzed foot traffic data from SafeGraph to validate the trends.
Read on to see which spots are getting plenty of attention, right now.
Open since December, this Japanese spot, which offers poke, seafood and more, is trending compared to other businesses categorized as "Seafood" on Yelp.
Citywide, seafood spots saw a median 1.3% increase in new reviews over the past month. Poke Ichii only recently appeared on Yelp, but while many new businesses struggle to gain reviews, it has seen strong initial popularity.
Located at 7600 Greenhaven Drive, Suite 22 in Pocket, Poke Ichii offers build-your-own poke bowls with choices like spicy tuna, habanero masago, kimchi, spicy mayo and more.
Poke Ichii is open from 11 a.m.–9 p.m. daily.
J's Railroad Cafe
Whether or not you've been hearing buzz about Ben Ali's J's Railroad Cafe, the bar and Chinese spot is a hot topic according to Yelp review data.
While businesses categorized as "Bars" on Yelp saw a median 1.3% increase in new reviews over the past month, J's Railroad Cafe bagged a 21.1% increase in new reviews within that time frame, maintaining a healthy 4.5-star rating. It significantly outperformed the previous month by gaining four times more reviews than expected based on its past performance. As for foot traffic, J's Railroad Cafe saw visits more than double in the past month, according to SafeGraph data.
There's more that's trending on Sacramento's bar scene: Polanco Cantina has seen a 18.5% increase in reviews, and Kodaiko Ramen & Bar and THAI - The House Of Authentic Ingredients have seen 10.9 and 6.2% increases, respectively.
Open at 1844 Auburn Blvd. since 2016, J's Railroad Cafe offers Chinese cuisine for dine-in or take-out with menu items like egg rolls, potstickers and fried prawns as well as a variety of chicken, beef, seafood and chow mein dishes.
J's Railroad Cafe is open from 10 a.m.–9 p.m. on weekdays. (It's closed on weekends.) According to SafeGraph, it's usually busiest on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and it attracts a quarter of its total visitors over those two days, with a slowdown on Mondays.
East Sacramento's Canon is also making waves. Open since 2017 at 1719 34th St., the well-established cocktail bar and New American spot has seen a 3.5% bump in new reviews over the last month, compared to a median review increase of 0.9% for all businesses tagged "American (New)" on Yelp.
Canon, a chef-driven restaurant, offers a full bar, as well as a dinner menu that features a variety of small plates, including heirloom beets with nopales, smoked tofu, mole verde and tortilla paste. The eatery also serves up platter of grilled chicken, lamb pavé, seared ahi tuna and grilled wagyu beef.
Over the past month, it's maintained a strong four-star rating among Yelpers.
Canon is open from 5 p.m.–9 p.m. on Tuesday-Thursday, 5 p.m.–10 p.m. on Friday, 10 a.m.–2 p.m. and 5 p.m.–10 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m.–2 p.m. and 5 p.m.–9 p.m. on Sunday. (It's closed on Monday.)
Natomas Crossing's Huckleberry's is the city's buzziest breakfast and brunch spot by the numbers.
The popular breakfast and brunch spot, which opened at 2580 Arena Blvd., Suite B100 in 2018, increased its new review count by 4.8% over the past month, an outlier when compared to the median new review count of 1% for the Yelp category "Breakfast & Brunch."
Stop by the morning eatery for a slew of classic breakfast dishes, including biscuits and gravy, chicken fried steak and egg scrambles served with housemade biscuits. For lunch, dig into a variety of Southern-inspired sandwiches, burgers and fish dishes, which can be served Bayou or Creole-style.
Huckleberry's is open from 7 a.m.–3 p.m. daily.