The cousin tag team of Livia Woodburn and Lizzie Smith embraces fresh ingredients and creative cooking to deliver breakfast, lunch, and baked goods. Myriad cupcake experiments stand out against the mundane—like a rebellious teenager who wears a suit—to fulfill special requests and cater parties. It might be said that Livia’s parallel career as a graphic designer acts as the secret ingredient that gives each cupcake its inventive, artistic flair. The friendly café invites early-morning or afternoon diners to feast upon hearty eats crafted from locally acquired ingredients and accompanied by house-made pickles, olives, and dressings. Lizzie, the lead chef behind many of Pan-Handlers Café’s dishes, cut her teeth as a cook during familial dinner routines and several cooking courses, and the cuisine enthusiast earned her degree in biology from Lewis & Clark College, which is inexplicably not where Lewis and Clark went to college.
The aqua buffs at Water Still purify their high-grade, healthful H2O with a process dubbed Ultra Premium Vapor Distillation. The staff believes that the chemicals and malevolent substances found swirling through common tap water can lead to diseases and ailments of the body, so Water Still enables clients to quench everyday thirst with distilled water and other beverages made from distilled water. The crew of drink chefs steeps 20 flavors of tea, both sweet and unsweet, in their well-scoured water using a proprietary brewing process that cannot be duplicated by scientists or even the most up-to-date xerox machine. Water Still has been concocting its specialty liquid solutions since 1989 and also freezes and purveys ice, which comes in cubes, nuggets, and crushed form.
Operating under the mantra Flavor Your Life, Bahama Buck's sends its patrons on a tropical holiday with every sip of its gourmet drinks. Island-inspired decor outfits each Bahama Buck's location, and the business's approach to flavor as an art form—with more than 90 flavors of shaved ice—carries over to its smoothies, which send creamy concoctions climbing through straws to rouse tasters with the zest of fresh fruit and juices. Hawaii's Kona coffee beans are used for Island House coffees, and island specialties, such as 100% natural juices, provide an afternoon pick-me-up without the pressure of negotiating with the intimidating children in charge of neighborhood lemonade stands.
Chili Dog Café smothers 100% beef hot dogs in made-from-scratch chili and other delectably exotic toppings. The basic chili dog ($3.49) ships these house specialties mouth-ward in a single bread-canoe, while regionally themed dogs sate both hunger and wanderlust. A Chicago dog bears Windy City flourishes of tomato, relish, a pickle spear, mustard, onions, and peppers ($3.99), and internationally inspired eats employ the sauerkraut-flecked flavors of Germany ($3.49) and the spicy, guac-tinged tastes of Mexico ($3.59). Non-sausage sandwiches include the fried chicken sandwich ($5.29) and the big Texas burger, mounded high with bacon, onion rings, jalapeños, mustard, and BBQ sauce ($8.69). Chili can be added onto any menu item for $1.49, or served in a cup ($2.99), bowl ($4.49), or exfoliating mask.
For anyone who loved waking up to a big bowl of cereal and Saturday morning cartoons, Serios for Cereal is a dream come true. This coffee house with a twist provides a relaxing atmosphere with local art, music, and free WiFi, but instead of coffee, they specialize in cereal. The menu lists 50 name brand cereals along with five specialty and hot cereals. Patrons can also pick organic, vegan, and gluten-free options and add a touch of individuality with a choice of 30 toppings including gummy bears, apple slices, and blackberries. For the truly innovative, Serios for Cereal lets imaginations roam free, creating editable artworks such as Fruit Loop-topped muffins and Pop-Tarts drizzled with chocolate swirls in the shape of Starry Night.
The sun has only just risen over the city of Lubbock when the chefs at Catalina's Restaurant begin whipping up breakfast dishes: burritos stuffed with chorizo and egg, tender chicken-fried steak, and pancakes showered in syrup. By the time the sun is high in the sky, the chefs have turned their attention to cheesy chili rellenos, crunchy tacos, and other Tex-Mex specialties. Their guests dig into dishes out in the colorful dining room, where the walls are decorated with vivid murals of Mexican street scenes.