At KeysCake, apple pie à la mode, strawberry shortcake, and banana splits are all transformed into bite-sized morsels. But the bakers don't have a shrink ray—rather, they use fresh ingredients to translate the flavors of classic desserts into cupcake form. Each small batch of cupcakes is made from scratch, then topped with swirls of frosting and colorful garnishes such as fruit, cookies, or petite candies.
Welcoming diners with a dessert counter filled with dainty, colorful pastries, The Cake Factory also dishes out a menu of traditional breakfast plates, from waffles to french toast, as well as café-style sandwiches and wraps for lunch. Early risers can rouse sleepy appetites with a Kahwa Coffee latte ($2.75) and Floridian french toast ($8.95), decorated with powdered sugar, bananas, berries, and a comically oversized beret. Dine on classic sandwiches from roast beef ($6.75) to tuna salad ($5.95), served on your choice of bread with lettuce, tomato, and a pickle. Hot n' ready comestibles include a cuban sandwich ($6.75), stocked with ham, pork, swiss cheese, and spicy mustard, or a gobble-worthy gourmet 8-ounce turkey burger ($5.95). With a casual café environment and free WiFi, diners can enjoy meals in comfort, lounge, and surf the Internet for tips on how to control one's Internet addiction.
Emilio's is one of St. Petersburg's newest additions, offering denizens a sampling of fine coffee, pastries, paninis, burgers, and more. Light the flare on flavor landing strips with Emilio's bottomless cup of blend roasted coffee ($1.50) and the morning-making berry parfait similar to earth's interior of layered crunchy granola and berries atop Greek yogurt and honey ($4.99). The baguette blanche treats midday diners to a medley of savories masked in the makeup of stacked turkey, grilled mushrooms, caramelized onions, cream cheese, and pesto ($7.99), and the roasted red-pepper and goat-cheese panini adds a dash of zest with fresh basil, red onions, and a zigzag of balsamic vinegar ($9.99). Unlike stuffed animals, stuffed burgers won't fight back when bit and can be filled with a variety of tasties such as applewood smoked bacon, sundried tomatoes, pesto, and brie ($10.99). Pair meals with one of the restaurant's many wines or craft beers.
Peace Love & Cake's staff of pastry perfectionists wields high-quality butter cream and a plethora of fine ingredients to conjure up a confectionery siren song that attracts sweet teeth from lands afar. The customizable cupcakes are delicately prepared to convert frosted fantasies into sugared certainties: choose from flavors such as red velvet, spice cake, raspberry, white chocolate, and more, then add extra style with customized frosting designs if desired ($0.50 per cupcake). Alternatively, the dessert party trays boast a choice of bite-size cupcakes, cheesecakes, cannolis, and more.
Voted Best Cookies in Tampa three years in a row by Tampa Bay Magazine, Kookie Krums specializes in decorative cookie bouquets to commemorate special occasions or to give as unique gifts. The bakery crafts seven flavors of cookies fresh daily, including chocolate chip, double chocolate, sugar, peanut butter, and oatmeal raisin, and can substitute Divvies nut-, egg-, dairy-free cookies with any order for an additional charge. Reward a baked-good fiend for keeping his paws out of unattended jars with a hand-painted big brown daisy flower pot filled with a half-dozen individually-wrapped cookies ($30.95), or buy Cookie Monster's vote for your Sesame Street mayoral bid with a dozen artfully arranged cookies ($35.95). Bouquets come in many themes, such as birthdays, anniversaries, new babies, and canine connoisseurs, ensuring that mouths will meet cookies and sweaters will need vacuuming regardless of the occasion. Along with flower-pot bouquets, Kookie Krums also sells smaller cookie-mug arrangements ($21.95) and cookies customized with personal photographs or corporate logos ($24 for a dozen).