NOTE (2/21/13) As of December 2012 there is a new vendor at Cafe Plaza and this review is no longer accurate. In fact, many are very unhappy with the new vendor. Since I rarely eat there now, I will make no further comment.
There is no better State cafeteria in town than the one at CalPERS. That is a fact. For instance, the above picture was my lunch today. They are celebrating Black History month and diversity on Wednesdays. The entree area was featuring Caribbean fare today. I had the Caribbean spiced lamb stew, sweet potatoes and black eyed peas. They even gave me the ham hock from the peas. Other choices were: mango glazed barbecue ribs, coconut rice, and plantains. The next line over was making Caribbean rice bowls. Cost of my plate? $6.99
Such is the fabulous fare that Sodexo provides at our cafe. And the prices are great because they have a State subsidy. I can get a tuna melt sandwich on my 'poor' days for $2.70.
The salad bar is done by weight - $.40 an ounce. I think it is a great deal because when Sodexo took over the contract they added chopped chicken breast to the bar. Now I can build a salad to my liking without having to buy all the veggies myself that then rot away in my frig if I don't use them in time. My salad weight usually comes out to about $4. I still try to save a little cash by sometimes bringing the heavy chicken breast from home along with my dressing. Then I just buy the greens from the bar.
The CalPERS cafeteria is located inside the CalPERS building at the 3rd and Q corner. It's open from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday. You can access the weekly menu here.