Tendrils of fragrant smoke curl from the hoses of Perk and Puff’s hookahs, infusing the air of the hardwood-floored lounge with scents ranging from fruity to exotic. Small cups of turkish coffee and tea roil with steam, mingling their bracing tastes with plates of flaky baklava. Small wooden tables and black leather couches lit by hovering televisions set the stage for languid lounging, and free WiFi keeps the lounge connected to the latest news and meteorologist fan fiction.
It's safe to assume that Celeste Gordon's mom let her lick the beaters. Since she was nine, Celeste has been sifting, whipping, and baking up a storm, eventually becoming an official student of the culinary arts. These days, Celeste applies her lifelong expertise as the cake master at Celeste's Cakes N More, where she oversees the production of myriad sweets, from fondant wedding cakes to vegan chocolate cupcakes. The bakery also offers delivery on all its orders, ensuring no celebration goes without its mandatory cake fight.
Lauded for its “timeless” feel by Houston Press, Chelsea Wine Bar’s creative menu of old-fashioned comfort food pairs perfectly with the restaurant’s weekly live music offerings and waterfront views. Satisfy sandwich-size cravings with the roast-turkey panini, topped with swiss cheese and basil pesto ($6.50), or the brie, tomato, and spinach panini ($6.50). Herbivores and dairy enthusiasts can skip carnivorous options and munch on the cheese flatbread pizza ($5), baked goat-cheese platter ($10), or warm brie plate ($10.50). Dessert-deigning diners can reminisce on childhoods spent roasting marshmallows over the warm glow of the television with the chocolate-mallow conglomeration of Susie’s s’mores ($6.50), which is complemented by a wide selection of gourmet coffee beverages from delectable white mochas ($3.50) to potent double espressos ($2.75).
The eponymous owner of Jenny’s Bakery has been crafting carefully sugared confections for more than 20 years. Thumbprint cookies ($7/dozen) offer evidence of who stole the cookies from the cookie jar, though sugary scones ($2 each) and muffins ($1.50 each) crumble when quizzed over the case. Alternately, gather a litter of cake's spherical offspring with a dozen poppable cake balls ($10), or get a forceful sugar-kick from feisty petits fours ($2.50 each) and shortbread cookies ($2.75 each) whose sizeable flavor belies their unassuming names.
At Delesandri's, adventurous bakers whip up tasty batches of 16 varieties of mouthwatering cupcakes every day. Grab a single serving ($2.75), six-pack ($15), or dozen ($29) of the frosted fare and treat yourself to the benefits of nano-cake technology. Regular cupcake cast members include chocolate hazelnut, original and gluten-free red velvet, and Delesandri's signature key-lime creation. A rotating selection of guest stars changes as often as Professor Plum's alibi, such as bubbly-infused pink champagne or the cinnamon-topped tres leches blend. Cupcake crushers on the move can order their baked treats to go, while those in need of a quicker fix can take advantage of Delesandri's free WiFi or dig in while relaxing on the waterfront patio.