Invented by microbiologist Curt Jones in 1988, Dippin Dots now satisfies sweets-lovers across the world with unique and cryogenically frozen confections. Dive into spherical servings of 10 different flavors, including Oreo, orange sherbet, or mint-chocolate-chip dots, all of which have been flash frozen using liquid nitrogen and an evil eye from Old Man Winter. With two area locations, Dippin Dots silences cross-state stomach rivalries with small ($3.25), medium, ($4.25), and large ($5.25) servings, as well as dot sundaes swimming in caramel and chocolate sauces and buried under a fluffy feather pillow of whipped cream ($4.50). Satisfying eyes and ears with the ping of each pellet scooped into your cup, Dippin Dots’ nontraditional treats signal the next wave in frozen sweets, and will inspire you to start cryogenically freezing other childhood flavors such as ginger snaps and tire swing.
Outside of swimming laps in chocolate syrup, smoothies at Smoothie King are the tastiest way to improve your health. Smoothie King smoothies combine fresh fruit, natural juices, and special nutritional enhancers into more than 90 flavors (you can customize, add, and subtract the extras), all of which focus on achieving one of seven nutritional goals. Try an antioxidant-rich Pomegranate Punch with pomegranate, bananas, blueberries, apple juice, soy protein, and Turbinado sweetener to stay healthy. Weight-conscious en-smuthiasts can trim down and float away with the Celestial Cherry High, packed with bananas, black cherry, papaya, Turbinado, and honey, and unpacked with fat. You can also customize any smoothie by adding enhancers or “make it skinny” by cutting out the honey and Turbinado.
Artrageous's chef Teri Scheff has award-winning backgrounds in both ceramic sculpture and the culinary arts, using her dual talents to mold, chisel, and hew only the most scrumptious, statuesque sweets. Snag cute custom cupcakes ($0.65––$3.50 each) topped with icing poodles, ladybugs, or sunflowers to add character to bare cupcake trees. Or choreograph flavors such as chocolate turtle, opera cream, and peanut-butter cup into numeric arrangements to commemorate a birthday, anniversary, or improved credit score. Rich tortes such as the apricot- and raspberry-filled amaretto stone sour refine blasé dinner parties in petite 6-inch ($20) and buff 8-inch ($37) varieties, and the ganache-covered chocolate-mousse bomb makes a perfect visual aid for schooling young CIA agents in the art of defusing an explosive with your mouth.
Marx Hot Bagels peppers its kosher menu with more than 35 bagel varieties, boiled and baked daily. Each halo of dough is made with preservative-free unbleached flour. Most are sugar-free, and all tantalize palates without the assistance of butter, oil, or crooked genies. Sate an early-morning sweet tooth with bagel flavors such as french toast, orange-cranberry, or strawberry or fuel up with savory varieties such as caraway, bialy, or sunflower ($.99+ each; $10.09+ for a baker’s dozen). Sandwiches, such as the tuna salad ($6.79) or PB&J ($2.89), come bookended by the bread of the day or a bagel of your choice, and six soups dot the menu, each served alongside bagel thins ($3.65–$4.30). Guests can also show off refined, mature tastes to old college buddies by chugging an entire cup of coffee or tea (1.69+). Many of the deli’s delectable offerings are also sold in bulk for take-home feasts.
You won’t find stale cookies and days-old cakes within the glass display case at Sugar Darlin’s Sweets and Such. In fact, you won’t even find a display case. That’s because Sugar Darlin’s is an online sweet shop, helmed by loving couple and resident bakers Candece and Greg. The duo makes each of their decadent treats to order, from batches of red velvet whoopee pies to signature 3-D cakes customized for special events. They use an old family recipe to craft their decadent pie crust and pour more than a dozen fillings, such as pumpkin, cherry, and blueberry, inside. Crust-less desserts also reign supreme at the shop in the form of cakes and cheesecakes in nearly 30 different flavors, such as carrot cake, banana pudding, and sweet-potato streusel. Because they make everything by scratch and by themselves, Candece and Greg require at least 48 hours notice or a time machine for most orders.
Jojo’s Cupcakes’ creative treats aim to expand the bounds of dessert possibility, challenging assumptions about whether pearls are edible and how many times you can fit “chocolate chip cookie” into one sentence. To wit: Florence’s french vanilla cupcake comes piled with vanilla frosting and sprinkled with edible pearl gems; the chocolate chip cookie dough cupcake tops chocolate chip cookie dough cake with frosting of the same flavor and a full-size chocolate chip cookie. For weddings and other occasions, the culinary team also arranges their cupcakes—which come in more than 20 flavors—into the shape of a tiered cake or other custom configurations. Jojo’s desserts aren’t only for special events: back in the inviting bake shop, the staff pairs treats with gourmet flavored coffees, tea, and cocoa for guests’ enjoyment at tables or to take home.
Tropical Smoothie Café's wholesome smoothies are filled to the gills with fresh fruit, juices, yogurt, chocolate, nuts, and healthful supplements, minimizing the crushing guilt of dessert consumption to a soft heartbeat emanating from the floorboards. Puréed potions ($4.59−$4.79) such as Pomegranate Plunge (pomegranate, banana, strawberries, cranberry) are stuffed with super fruit, and low-fat options, such as Mango Magic (mango, pineapple, non-fat yogurt), trick gullible taste buds into believing that they are traversing a candy factory full of whipped-cream lollipops. Supercharged smoothies are stocked with a healthy dose of supplements, such as the Kiwi Citrus Green Tea's antioxidant-laden matcha charge or the Muscle Blaster's whey or soy protein. Individual supplements can also be added to any other smoothie ($0.79 extra), boosting its magic points by +10.