Tim Mercier grew up beneath the shade of apple trees at Mercier Orchards, helping his father tend the fertile mountain soil while snacking on juicy winesaps plucked straight from the branch. To this day, Tim continues to run his family's 50-year-old farm, where he harvests apples by hand, wears John Appleseed’s cooking pot hat, and manages the market alongside his wife, children, and grandchildren. At the 200-acre farm, tree branches sprout dozens of kinds of apples, including sweet ambrosias, tart dandee reds, and crisp pink ladies. Beyond the apple groves lie stretches of cherry trees, peach trees, and blueberry bushes, as well as strawberry fields blossoming with chandler, camerosa, and sweet charlie varieties.
The Mercier family opens their farm to visitors year-round, inviting guests to stroll the verdant grounds and pick their own berries and apples. Afterwards, guests pop into Mercier Orchards’ rustic shop to survey jugs of fresh cider, colorful jams, and caramel-coated candy apples. In the bakery, they sample apple cider donuts, pecan breads, and the farm's famous fried pies, which can now be found on the shelves of local Whole Foods.
Scoops and Burgers celebrates classic American comfort food in its menu of burgers, hot dogs, and creamy frozen custard. You're free to put your own spin on these old favorites, too: hot dogs can be dressed with more than a dozen toppings, including celery salt, chili, and jardinière, and the kitchen has six different renditions of the hamburger. The cooks here also give gourmet flourishes to classic sandwiches: the grilled cheese oozes with feta and fontina and comes with sides such as fresh housemade potato chips. For dessert, try frozen custard in a shake, float, or sundae.
As highlighted in Cleveland Daily Banner, owner Frank Kolhouse hopes to establish Scoops and Burgers as a community hub: every Tuesday and Thursday, the restaurant hosts live gospel singers to promote local ministries. The dining room has an old-timey allure: the walls are lined with old vinyl records, and a floor-to-ceiling mural features vintage cars and other relics of the pre-Segway era.
Brought up in Germany by parents working with the US military, brothers Jonny, Robbie, and Jeremy Moore trace the foundation of their coffee shop to their travels. From Italy to Thailand, the brothers had the benefit of sampling some of the world’s best coffees, refining their palates and developing their love of the drink in the process. Today, they combine their efforts to source fair-trade beans from far-reaching destinations, bringing them to BonLife for Robbie to roast onsite. Focused on crafting perfect individual cups instead of pouring orders for the masses, BonLife regularly features nine brewing methods and a 10th that rotates monthly. The deft baristas watch Japanese siphoning apparatus percolate over open burners, drip pour-over cups from custom-made stands, and extract espresso from Sofia, a copper-plated espresso machine and not a woman who fiercely guards her coffee. The coffee bar also offers organic granola bars, biscotti, greek yogurt, and 100% fruit smoothies.
At Cafe 411, Chef Zain serves up Southern foods such as chicken and dumplings and housemade meatloaf. But the menu's highlight is Chef Zain's barbecue. He smokes pulled pork, beef brisket, and chicken for lunch and dinner served with sides such as coleslaw and baked beans. In the morning, when the sun is still lost, he and his staff prepare breakfast dishes such as biscuits and gravy, pancakes, and omelets.
Knoxville, Tennessee-based Fit Sweets is obsessed with cupcakes, sweet homemade cupcakes. After a year's worth of experimenting with recipes that combine the tastiness of a cupcake with the nutrition of a protein bar, Fit Sweets was launched in October 2012. Prioritizing both deliciousness and healthiness, the nutrition-motivated bakers prepare low-calorie, gluten-free, sugar-free cupcakes sweetened with Stevia. To top it all off, each cupcake is laden with 18 grams of protein. Vanilla and chocolate butter cream are just two of the bakery's flavors, which staff prepares in dozens.