Hot Cupps keeps cravings in balance by selling both fresh, savory deli sandwiches and specialty cakes and cupcakes. Sweets delight the palate in unexpected flavors such as Guinness Lover, pancakes and bacon, and piña colada, as well as more traditional flavors that include red velvet, lemon raspberry, and birthday cake. The bakers are true artists with frosting and are eager to design custom desserts for special events, whether the client desires elegant buttercream swirls for a wedding or a more playful cake encrusted with candy-bar crumbles.
Super Juice Smoothies pairs 100%, all-natural smoothies with piping-hot panini sandwiches. Marvel at the superhero moxie of the menu, where blends of soymilk, yogurts, and organic fruit assume a distinctive muscular moniker. Thor bolsters bodies with a mixture of berries, bananas, nonfat yogurt, creatine, and a winged helmet made entirely of condensed soymilk ($4.25+). Invisible Woman slims visual vantage points of waistlines through a mix of mangos, bananas, nonfat yogurt, and soymilk ($3.95+). Add-ins, such as ginseng and vitamin C, promote workout recoveries, treat colds, and energize bodies for upcoming battery-commercial casting calls (first one free, $0.50 each additional). With several drinks fewer than 200 calories, bellies may crave additional made-to-order attention of superhero-savvy paninis. Sandwiches include the Cyclops, which keeps hunger in plain sight through smears of light tuna salad served with cheese, pickles, and an x-ray monocle ($5.99).
What began in a home kitchen in the early 1940s is now the regional mainstay Marie Callender’s Restaurant & Bakery, which serves classic American fare and more 30 homemade varieties of their famous pies in a family-friendly dining experience. Cooks whip up dishes that are central to American culinary cannon, such as roast turkey dinners, ribs slathered in St. Louis-style bourbon barbecue sauce, and hearty country-fried steaks. They also maintain a salad bar fully stocked with fresh veggies, which pair nicely with any meal or can be piled into a 3 ft. tower and be a full meal themselves. But at Marie Callender’s dessert is the main event, and they serve up thick slices of classic pies such as apple or rhubarb, as well as more unusual flavors such as the kahlua cream cheese pie, a delicious liquor-infused treat that fits inside a flask if you squish it.
The cake decorators at Nothing Bundt Cakes adorn their bundt cakes with a similar motif: thick stripes of white frosting that fan out like petals on a daisy. But atop the cake’s hollow center, they insert colorful flourishes such as bright polka-dotted bows, silk flowers, and tiny placards for every conceivable occasion. For an even more memorable presentation, they happily arrange balloon bouquets that complement their cakes’ color schemes. Though presentation is paramount, Nothing Bundt Cakes’ bakers don’t shirk taste: they use fresh eggs, real butter, and real cream cheese to concoct flavors such as pecan praline or white chocolate raspberry.
Additionally, inside the cheerful storefront, patrons can peruse ’50s-era baking accessories such as cake tins and Mayfair cake stands that conjure nostalgic memories of poodle skirts, Cadillacs, and poodles in skirts driving Cadillacs.
San Luis Rey Bakery’s ovens have turned out countless dozens of Mexican breads and pastries for more than four decades. The family-run confection shop bakes up a staggering array of pastries—from fruit pies and madelines to sweet empanadas and conchasa, or Mexican sweet breads. The sweet treats top off meals from the adjoining restaurant, where chefs simmer huevos rancheros and build sandwiches on house-baked bread. From each teal-cushioned seat in the dining room, patrons can tuck into meals and admire Mexican folk art and the vivid wall mural, or attempt to ruffle the strings of papel picado that crisscross the ceiling with cake-induced telepathy.
Along with San Luis Rey’s bevy of recipes, the bakery also focuses on wedding cakes. The celebratory stacks are adorned in delicate polka dots and paisleys or intricate swirls of creamy white frosting. For birthdays, the shop designs cakes topped with chocolate-covered fruits or vivid layers of fondant.
Helmed by a French pastry chef, Vista French Bakery Cafe imbues its breakfast cuisine with an authentic Parisian touch, rendered fresh by the use of locally acquired ingredients. House-made quiches warm plates, and a ratatouille of zucchini, eggplant, onion, and tomato gets wrapped up in the South of France omelet, which comes packed with feta cheese and adorned with a swanky scarf. With spacious, indoor seating and a cozy spot for outdoor dining, the café invites diners into an atmosphere where local art and rejected omelets hang on the walls while jazz gently plays. The affable staff welcomes guests to cap off their dining and music-absorbing experiences by enjoying fresh pastries such as fruit tarts, coconut macaroons, and mini vanilla custard eclairs.