There's an artful touch in Jackie Green's baking hand. She's fond of the process, of finding the right ingredients and making cakes that crumble with Southern-style deliciousness. She's been baking since she was a young girl, and her family tradition taught her to eschew preservatives and hydrogenated oils to keep her recipes as flavorful as possible. Her specialty? Iced butter pound cake topped with pecans and a cream-cheese glaze. As the consummate small-business owner, Jackie blends managerial expertise with her baking talent; you might see her dispensing samples of her cupcakes, brownies, or cookies at local markets. This consistent professionalism helped Jackie earn the title of Best Bakery from the Holly Springs Sun in 2010.
From behind a frozen granite slab, the staff of Cold Stone Creamery uses twin spatulas to blend custom servings of ice cream and creative mix-ins to fit customers’ exact specifications. Founded by Donald and Susan Sutherland in 1988, Cold Stone began under the hot Arizona sun, eventually spreading its frosty fingers to encompass more than 1,400 locations worldwide. Despite the size of the company, each location’s staff keeps up the handcrafted quality, making ice cream onsite every day and using those signature spatulas to create delicious pointillist art against the freezer wall.
At Johnny's Pizza's, cooks roll gleaming pizza wheels over New York–style thin-crust, deep-dish, and gourmet pies peppered with fresh ingredients. Meanwhile, the delivery crew stands at attention to speedily transport online orders of pizza, pasta, and subs to homes, hotels, and maximum-security pillow forts. Although delivery is free, diners can also make meals of chicken wings and toasty calzones in the dining area.
Dixie Belle’s Bar-B-Q's meats, such as a platter of juicy pulled pork ($7.99), spend 3–12 hours soaking up flavor vapors from slow-burning hickory logs to acquire their telltale pink inner rings and alluringly husky voices. A half slab of ribs slathered in homemade sauce ($8.99) keeps the wet-nap industry flourishing, and sandwiches count among their ranks the Western ($6), a hunk of flame-nuzzled beef brisket accompanied by mushrooms, sautéed onions, horseradish mayo, and the score of a Sergio Leone movie. The menu mates most dishes with a choice of more than a dozen flavorful fixins, which include fried okra, collard greens, and cinnamon apples; fixins are also available in dinner-size half-pint ($1.99), pint ($3.49), or quart ($6.49) servings.
Beltline Brew Tours has all of the Capital City's breweries in their back pocket. On exclusive tours spanning across 18 Triangle-area breweries, guests learn about the local craft beer scene while sipping multiple sample of award-winning brews. Private tours are also available for large groups.