The aroma of freshly made waffle-cone bowls wafts through the shop, beckoning customers to come in and top them with 14 self-serve frozen-yogurt and custard flavors. The bowls support frosty mounds of rotating flavors, such as Texas peanut butter, no-sugar-added mint chocolate chip, and watermelon frozen yogurt, or favorite standbys of vanilla and chocolate custard. All of the frozen yogurt and custard is kosher and gluten-free, and there is always a pair of vegan/dairy-free frozen yogurts in stock. A huge toppings bar stocked with more than 35 toppings⎯including cookie dough, gummy bears, and fresh fruit from nearby Hiller's Market⎯awaits the snowy peaks.
After customers have engineered their creations with as many flavors and toppings as they'd like, they pay by weight, just as new parents do with their babies. Customers can also combine their favorite frozen yogurt and topping flavors into a blended Storm, which has fewer calories and less fat than similar blended ice-cream treats offered elsewhere.
In the summertime, Just Peachy’s patio hums with activity. In colder weather, guests scurry inside to sip hot chocolate or organic coffee from Sweetwaters Coffee & Tea.
In a few short years, April and James Forbes have gone from humble dreamers to established-and-celebrated experts in their trade: the tasty-baked-goods trade. Before opening The Cakeria in 2010, the couple sold their home-baked treats at the Dixieland Flea Market, according to the Oakland Press. By 2012, their cupcakes had earned them the championship spot on Food Network's Cupcake Wars—wars in which the kitchen-clumsy Napoleon never would have stood a chance. The key to the couple’s success lies in from-scratch recipes and highly creative flavor concepts; they bake with herbs, oils, and real butter to make confections such as chocolate cupcakes soaked in cherry cola and topped with swiss-meringue buttercream. Their cookies, brownies, and french macarons obtain their distinctive tastes from exquisite ingredients such as tahitian vanilla, dutch cocoa powder, and stardust from the Andromeda galaxy.
Inside Trifles's vintage-style space, staff members bake specialty wedding cakes, gourmet chocolates, and cupcakes. The bakers adorn their signature cakes in flavors such as banana, carrot, and cherry nut with vanilla buttercream frosting and sugar flowers.
Creative treat-seekers are welcomed at Bloomberry, where customers layer frozen yogurt and toppings into their own cups and design their own smoothies. Full of live, active cultures, the probiotic-rich, gluten-free yogurt comes in flavors such as dark chocolate, Tahitian vanilla, and pomegranate, and a rotating specialty-flavor menu may include snickerdoodle, birthday cake, or rocky road. To accessorize one's frozen creation, each dessert creator can mine Bloomberry's collection of toppings: fresh fruit, Cap'n Crunch, broken candy bars, and syrups. The customer can then dig in with a spoon, load it into a slingshot, or pass the cup to a staff member who will blend it into a custom milkshake.
The staff at Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt rejects the oft-touted claim that Americans don?t care about nutrition. The problem, they say, has more to do with selection than anything else; most low-calorie sweets don?t hold a candle to a fudge brownie or a warm slice of apple pie. They kept this in mind when crafting their frozen-yogurt recipes, working tireless to develop a healthy?and equally delicious?alternative to the dessert status quo by turning to decadent confections and fresh fruits for inspiration.
Their experiments thus far have yielded a variety of frozen yogurt flavors made daily, which take turns pumping through the self-serve machines that line their stimulating shop?s wall. Before taking a seat in a bright orange chair for an innocent indulgence, guests fill their dishes with cool, low-fat swirls of chocolate cheesecake, strawberry banana, and a classic tart that bites as pleasantly as a teething kitten. Juicy pears, crunchy granola, and gooey chocolate sauce headline a smorgasbord of at least 30 do-it-yourself toppings ready to scooped or poured into customized cups before their final weigh-in. Orange Leaf also offers no sugar-added, gluten-free, and dairy-free alternatives.
Before Pam Turkin flung open the doors to the first Just Baked in 2009, she was just baking cupcakes on the weekends. But after her corporate travels took her past a growing number of cupcake shops outside of southeastern Michigan, she decided to turn her hobby into a career. She now helms 17 shops in the area, where she and her staff of dessert experts whip up eclectically flavored cupcakes such as red velvet cheesecake, chocolate chip cookie dough, and grumpy cake. In addition to the mouthwatering flavors, all of their items boast real butter, real eggs, and real milk as opposed to artificial ingredients from artificial cows and chickens.