Although it seems hard to imagine now, less than a third of the population had ever tasted a bagel in 1983. Back then, it was pegged as an ethnic food and unpopular outside of New York City. Thankfully, two Vermont residents by the names of Nord Brue and Mike Dressel realized that the rest of the nation needed, nay, deserved to experience the deliciousness of boiled and baked yeast with it's crusty exteriors and doughy innards. They knew it was finally time for America to put cream cheese on something other than cats.
So, after two and a half years of diligent baking research, they honed their formula to create Bruegger's Bagels, starting the craze that has become a breakfast staple for millions. Now with more than 300 Bruegger's across 26 states, the franchise beckons bagel fans to come enjoy the bevy of breakfast and lunch options at their casual cafes. In addition to baking up a parade of bagel varities that range from classic poppy to cheddar pesto, they make a slew of their own Vermont-churned cream cheeses, including bacon scallion and smoked salmon. A wealth of sandwiches, soups, and salads round out the menu, and Rainforest Alliance Certified hot and iced coffee drinks pack a caffeinated punch and a social conscience.
There's no room for additives in Juice Zone's smoothies, not even extra sugar. Instead, staff members make them with non-fat frozen yogurt, sorbet, and fresh fruit—including everything from pineapple, strawberries, and coconut to peaches and bananas. Their commitment to simple, delicious and, most importantly, healthful recipes is evident throughout the rest of the cafe menu as well, which features crisp salads and a selection of wraps and sandwiches that can be grilled atop the kitchen's miniature volcano.
Inside Mister & Miss Einstein’s pink and brown storefront, ice cream shares table space with cups of coffee and rich fruit smoothies. The shop’s homemade desserts include ice cream sandwiches, shakes such as the Georgia peach with peach pie and vanilla ice cream, and cherry-topped banana splits. An ice cream club held throughout the week entertains kids with treat-making lessons that teach them to craft their own ice cream and sorbets, better preparing them for the impending snowman apocalypse.
Craft a rope made of straws and climb the food pyramid with Planet Smoothie's menu as a trusty, yet tasty Sherpa. Thirst quenchers are grouped according to blasts, which range from the protein-rich workout blast to the vitamin-C-loaded immunity blast. For post-gym Planet Smoothie consumption, wrap your muscled eyebrows around a Big Bang, loaded with strawberries, bananas, vanilla, and your choice of protein or workout blast. If you catch a tickle in your throat, breeze through an anti-sick sampling of the Screamsicle, a pineapple-peach concoction with orange juice, yogurt, orange sherbet, and 230 percent of your daily vitamin C. To simultaneously support breast-cancer research and taste buds, sip on the Pink Promise smoothie, a blend high in antioxidants. Smoothies range in size from the after-jog-appropriate 22-ounce ($4.49) to the meal-substituting 44-ounce large ($6.55), and all drinks may be customized or supplemented upon request (try a Merlin's Mix—a protein-packed powder that turns your smoothie into a meal replacement, $2.99 additional). Planet Smoothie uses Pro-Yo, a frozen yogurt that is naturally fat free, low calorie, a friend to the digestive system, and sweetened with Stevia. The Vinings and Midtown locations also offer wheatgrass shots ($1.75–$3.25 for a 1- to 2-ounce shot).
Cafe at Pharr has been serving a menu of fresh, delicious, healthy cafe fare since the early 90s, and, despite its steady ascent toward universal acclaim, remains committed to meeting individual customers’ discerning edible druthers. The freshness of the teriyaki chicken sandwich ($7.50) or salad plate ($9) explodes on diners' tongues. Cafe at Pharr's celebrated walnut chicken-salad sandwich ($7.50) or salad plate ($9) is a walnut and golden raisin-dotted dish, while the vegetarian sandwich ($7.50) mingles avocado, swiss and american cheese, lettuce, tomato, mayo, and mustard. Rice plates like the curry chicken ($9), served with white rice and bread, wage subtle yet effective war on standard sandwich shop fare. Coffee is available for body warming when the entire state cools in the afternoon, after unleashing a giant, statewide umbrella.
Drinking tea is more than just imbibing a delicious beverage made by infusing hot water with dried, tasty herbs and leaves. For many, it is a social engagement that eventually leads to common-law marriage and an excuse to nosh on mouthwatering sweets and tiny sandwiches. Get today's Groupon to tahCha Tea House, where you'll get $25 worth of tea, pastries, and more for just $10. Click here to discuss Groupon the Cat.