Wide eyes and even wider smiles are a familiar sight for the staff behind the counter at Ruggles Cafe Bakery: those are typically the attributes sported by visitors as they approach the shop's vast dessert display. A total of three cases houses a collection of treats that ranges from chocolate crème brûlée to jumbo cookies to the bakery's famous white-chocolate bread pudding. Before satisfying their sweet tooth, though, visitors can sample the shop's savory side with housemade soups, hearty pastas, and fresh sandwiches and salads. Ruggles helps families with younger children occupy the time before a meal by letting kids decorate cookies with their favorite shapes and particle-physics equations.
For more than 30 years, Quiznos has toasted its submarine sandwiches to bring out the hidden flavors found in butcher-quality meats, cheese, and artisan breads. Its classic and signature subs take on a variety of shapes, sizes, and styles ranging from the peppercorn prime rib to the classic italian donning black olives, mozzarella, red-wine vinaigrette, and plentiful sliced meats. Those closely monitoring their waistlines can take unabashed bites of sandwiches that have fewer than 500 calories, such as the ultimate turkey club, basil pesto chicken flatbread or Baja-chicken. A selection of Flatbread Sammies, soups, and salads round out Quiznos' varied menu.
The seasoned chefs at Dimassi's Mediterranean Buffet whip up unlimited portions of authentic Middle Eastern cuisine seven days a week. Partnered patrons survey the robust buffet to plot their takeover of fresh, house-made bread sauced with hummus or baba ghanouj, a roasted and seasoned eggplant purée. Endless supplies of savory entrees silence even the chattiest tummies with chicken kebabs and baked-fish-shaped pacifiers. Diners not on speaking terms with salt may opt for Dimassi’s spinach baked with chickpeas, onions, garlic, and cilantro, and herbivores can nosh on an assortment of seasoned veggies or a greek salad with feta, olive oil, and aged balsamic vinegar. Dining duos toast to the possibility of falafel shot put becoming a common party game with unlimited glasses of iced tea or soft drinks. Fistfuls of jam cookies or ladyfingers with walnuts, sugar, and rose and orange water give meals a delicately sweet sendoff.
The Marble Slab Creamery sensory experience begins by just walking past the storefront, where the buttery scent of fresh-baked waffle cones drifts out into the air. Gourmet ice creams are freshly crafted on site from Marble Slab?s original recipe, enticing customer's eyes with a rainbow of colors. Once clients have made a flavor selection, they choose from a smorgasbord of mix-ins, from fresh fruit to nuts to candy and crumbled cookies, which an ice cream chef then hand-folds in atop a frosty marble slab before packing the finished custom-designed flavor masterpiece into a house-made waffle cone.
In addition to procuring hand-held treats, Marble Slab Creamery can send creations home in a variety of other formats, such as ice cream cakes, cupcakes, and hand-packed quarts, or in the capable hands of a catering team for sprucing up special events such a corporate get-togethers or school functions with sundae bars in tow.
In Edloe St. Café & Catering’s kitchen, staffers grind fresh burger patties and concoct dishes from owner E.I. Thomas’s farmer’s market finds. The eatery specializes in fresh, local food inspired by cultures on either side of the Mexican border; the kitchen whips up jumbo lump crab cakes and leafy Cobb salads just as deftly as they craft Southern-fried fish tacos and pile plates with chicken tamales. Upscale options such as Black Angus tenderloin are also available and lend an extra touch of superiority by the alumnus of Johnson & Wales College of Culinary Arts who helms the kitchen.
Despite the steak on the menu, the café's atmosphere is unpretentious. Patrons order from a menu handwritten on hanging chalkboards, and eat at simple wooden tables or retire to the outdoor patio for fresh air and a chance to spellcheck any recent skywriting. For large functions, hosts can also turn to the kitchen for buffet-style catering spreads, which offer everything from breakfast tacos to boxed lunches.
It's easy to see the beauty and simplicity of French desserts by scanning the counters at Oui Dessert. But to experience the classic yet decadent flavors of eclairs, macaroons, and tarts, you'll just have to order one of everything. Luckily, that is an enjoyable prospect, as bakers cater to every taste. They flavor macaroons with the delicate aroma of roses, and add a bit of sweet, nuttiness to shortbread cookies with a dollop of maple syrup and pecans. For special occasions or when perfectly good three-tier cake stands are going to waste, they layer together towering cakes iced in elegant designs or mix together batches of creamy homemade ice cream.