In a bustling shopping district among footwear stores, tattoo parlors, and record shops rests Richmond Ice Cream, a parlor with heat-squelching sundaes, milkshakes, water ices, and other chilled, sweet treats. Among their talents, the staff hand-dips cones to order, ensuring that each swirl of soft-serve is deliciously armored from hungry mouths for its first five seconds of existence. The team also blends soft-serve ice cream with a medley of toppings to make cooling blizzards.
Featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives and celebrated by both ravenous residents and voracious visitors, The Dining Car & Market has earned its place in the annals of enthusiastic eats. Within its art-deco interior, the venerable neighborhood eatery sates early-morning munchers and late-night noshers alike with its 24-hour welcoming mat and its gargantuan menu. Belly up to a hearty breakfast with the special farmer's omelette, cultivated from plowed fields of peppers, onions, home fries, and your choice of meat ($6.95). Or, quell midday hungerings with a hot roast-beef-sandwich platter ($8.45) or french onion soup, which places its dapper, cheesy tam over a cluster of croutons ($5.20).
Delicate, crispy crepe edges give way to a tender pastry center. Each paper-thin bite reveals a hidden filling such as lemon and sugar, nutella, or italian sausage. Le Cafe Creperie’s chefs have perfected their art with a five-step process: patrons can watch as cooks pour, spin, and flip their crepe, fill it with sweet or savory ingredients, then fold it to trap in the luscious flavors. Beyond crepes, Le Cafe also serves their own flatbread creations, "nanzzas." These unique pizzas are made with a foundation of Tandoori-naan flatbread and come baked in nine varieties such as pesto basil, spinach and chicken, chicken asiago, Mediterrranean, and tomato basil.
After Vernon Rudolph acquired a closely guarded yeast-raised Krispy Kreme Doughnuts recipe from a New Orleans pastry chef, he shared his appreciation for delectable disks by opening shop in 1937 and selling the first Krispy Kremes to grocery stores. The wafting aroma of glazed Krispy Kreme Doughnuts increased demand for the sweet treats and caused Rudolph to redesign his building's layout to include a walkup window, Rudolph was able to sell them directly to any passing customer who demanded a snack. Later, he joined forces with equipment engineers, creating baking equipment that guaranteed uniform shape and dough consistency.
Rudolph's departure to a pastry-filled afterlife in 1973 did not stop Krispy Kreme from expanding into a global sensation and continuing to innovate. In recent years, the company enhanced the treat-retrieving experience by introducing a Hot Light that, when illuminated, indicates when Krispy Kreme Doughnuts are fresh off the conveyor belt.
Desserted Pastries' experienced bakers craft a conscientious menu of allergy- and diet-friendly sweets and savories. Relying only on nut-free recipes, the bakery purveys cinnamon rolls ($2), cream puffs ($1.50), and éclairs ($1.50) that sate sweet teeth without harming allergy sufferers or incurring vendettas from aggrieved cashews. Cakes of the yellow, chocolate, red-velvet, and carrot variety ($12+) encapsulate cylindrical deliciousness, and cupcakes ($9/half dozen) and cookies ($7.50/dozen) supply delectable mouthfuls by the handful. Yeast breads, including french, italian, and challah loaves ($2–$7), bestow a crusty crunch on any celebration, from an acquaintance's pastry-school graduation to a pet rock's birthday party. Desserted Pastries prides itself on serving oven-fresh delicacies, and therefore requires advance orders for breads, seasonal treats, and gluten-free goods. Check the menu for details.