Grandma Ruby’s Sweet Shoppe crafts tasty fudge creations that stimulate palates and, when melted, offer a much more delicious way to tar and feather mischievous rapscallions. Armed with the late Grandma Ruby’s secret fudge recipe, sisters Kari Carpenter and Marni Glenn have been concocting tantalizing fudge since 1992—the year fudge was accidentally listed as a bread on the food pyramid, requiring Americans to consume 6–11 servings of it each day. Customers can sample a wide variety of fudge flavors that include cherry cheesecake, maple, rocky road, creamsicle, apple pie, and caramel apple. A two-pound block of smile-inducing goodness is also offered in diabetic-friendly sucrose-free fudge form.
Bean Buddy's bright-eyed coffee-bean mascot, Bean Buddy, welcomes guests into the WiFi-equipped cafe, where coffee pots percolate and beans are ground fresh. With a five-drink punch card, customers can bring along a jazz quartet and still ensure that everyone enjoys their own cup (up to $4.89 each) of Buddy's hazelnut divinity, a swirling vortex of hazelnut and almond roca. Augment flavor absorption by partnering warm sips of german-chocolate-cake coffee—infused with chocolate and coconut—with The Mean Bean, an extra shot of espresso, chocolate, caramel, and hazelnut. Baked fresh by a local pastry chef, cupcakes ($2.45 each) of red velvet and chocolate add extra morsels of saccharine goodness to an already-rich culinary affair, and a Bean Buddy cartoon coffee mug ($9.95) acts as a sentimental souvenir of your visit or lightens up the moods of dark cupboards.
When visitors walk into Café Donuts at 5 a.m., chances are they’re still waking up or sleepwalking in their pajamas. Once through the doorway, they immediately regain consciousness as they’re greeted by an aromatic uppercut of fresh donuts and percolating coffee. With newfound alertness, they behold a menu of 40 standard donut varieties alongside specialty pastries such as apple fritters and éclairs. Behind the counter, baristas steam milk and grind beans for a variety of hot or iced espresso drinks. The café’s staff also keep sweet teeth from troubling neighbors for a cup of sugar with more than 25 flavors of hand-dipped ice cream from KaledioScoops.
Opened by a pair of leaf-loving friends in 1999, The Mad Hatter Tea Room fills the 1916-built Anoka Post Office building with traditional English teas and trays bearing freshly baked scones and dainty sandwiches. At reserved seatings, guests sip and nibble from a cornucopia of tea services named after outlandish characters from Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland books and mathematical theorems. Tea sets the scene for leisurely afternoons, surrounded by spiraling chandeliers and pastel walls. On the way out, a boutique stocked with books and tea accessories lets guests tote the elegance to their own homes and backyard dirt bike rallies.
When Shannon and her daughter Kate sought out a mother-daughter activity, they dodged the typical scrapbooking and quilting and instead opened Coffee Caboose. Their creation is a charming café specializing in espresso drinks, hot dogs loaded with toppings, and housemade baked goods. Often seen manning the counter or flapping limbs to create angels in coffee-grounds piles, they ensure the quality of their product by involving themselves in all aspects of their business. Each morning, Shannon and Kate showcase this dedication by serving up fresh-baked cinnamon rolls and steaming cups of coffee to commuters en route to the Northstar Train.