Mermaid Café (907/235-7649, www.mermaidcafe.net , Wed.–Sun. 9 a.m.–2 p.m., Fri.–Sat. 5–9 p.m., closed Mon., dinner entrées $18–24) fills the back of Old Inlet Bookshop, with delicious breakfasts and lunches, plus weekend dinners in a cheery setting. A couple of tables on the deck are popular on a summer day.
Sweet Berries Café (104 E. Pioneer Ave., 907/226-1118, www.sweetberriescafe.com , daily 6:30 a.m.–3 p.m.) has a few tables in the back of the historic Main Street Mercantile building. Try the eggs Benedict or a “one-eyed sailor” for breakfast. Lunch faves include barbecue pulled pork and chicken tarragon sandwiches, plus a blue cheese salad. There are good desserts too.
Duncan House Diner (125 E. Pioneer Ave., 907/235-5344, daily 7 a.m.–2 p.m., $6–10) is a family place with substantial all-American meals for breakfast and lunch; it’s often crowded on weekend mornings. Daily specials are often your best bet.
Open seasonally since 1982 and a real favorite with travelers, Fresh Sourdough Express Bakery & Café (1316 Ocean Dr., 907/235-7571, www.freshsourdoughexpress.com , daily 7 a.m.–9 p.m. May–Sept., dinner $22–38) is a homey Homer  spot serving sourdough hotcakes, scrambles, granola, muffins, and monster pastries for breakfast. Lunch includes sandwiches, buffalo burgers, homemade soups, and salads, while dinners cover the salmon, chicken, and steak terrain. The menu includes vegetarian meals, but also plenty of carnivorous protein.
Inside the historic Old Town B&B building a block away is tiny Maura’s Café (907/235-1555, Mon.–Sat. 11 a.m.–4 p.m., $11–13), where the chalkboard lists today’s always-delicious sandwiches, soups, and salads.
Far from the hubbub on the Spit  is Fritz Creek General Store (907/235-6753, Sun. 10 a.m.–8 p.m., Mon.–Sat. 7 a.m.–9 p.m., $5–10), eight miles out on East End Road. The store has a small selection of groceries, a little post office, booze, and an eclectic video selection. The real attraction here is the deli, featuring freshly baked bread, hot sandwiches, unusual burritos, pizza by the pie or slice, ribs, sweets, and coffee. Fritz Creek is a delightful place to hang out in an old-time country setting. Fine dining at Homestead Restaurant is right across the road.