Le Peep's focus on breakfast and lunch stems from a decision made more than 40 years ago, when Buddy and Rhoda Waldman opened The Village Pantry in Aspen, Colorado, and—not wanting to miss a half day of skiing—would close the kitchen each day before noon. The duo would continue to tinker with their concept, stare at it through a novelty-sized microscope, and change its name before it eventually migrated to Texas.
Nowadays, the kitchen staff perpetuates the breakfast-crafting tradition by offering omelets, eggs benedict, skillets, and build-your-own pancake options that use ingredients such as walnuts, bacon, pineapple, and chocolate chips. Traditional dishes are augmented with unique twists, such as the Gooey Buns, english muffins broiled with brown sugar, cinnamon, and almonds and served with a signature side of Mom's Sassy Apples. During midday hours, a variety of salads, burgers, and sandwiches parades out of the kitchen accompanied by smoothies, juices, or Mother Parkers coffee. Le Peep's catering service delivers breakfast and lunch fare to homes, events, or filibustered neighborhood-watch meetings.
Orbs of freshly made dough chug along the lustrous metallic conveyor belts of Marquez Bakery and Tortilla Factory's enormous tortilla-making mechanism, polka-dotting the chainlink pathways as they're flattened, baked, and morphed into the eatery's trademark fare. The chefs at the family bakery load the disks with traditional Mexican meats, such as chorizo and chicharrón, by hand, whisper "goodbye" to each morsel, and send them off to catered events or the onsite restaurant. They also sate sweet teeth with meticulously constructed custom cakes, harking back to founder Jose Marquez's legacy of selling donuts, pies, and sweet bread from his own home.
Light streams in through the floor-to-ceiling windows at the front of Glazed Doughnuts & Cafe, glinting off cushy high-backed chairs and sleek wooden tables before mingling with the crystals in the ornate chandelier. Before taking a seat or levitating next to the bookshelf, customers can peruse the mouth-watering menu, selecting treats including tantalizingly fresh scratch-made doughnuts, croissants, and muffins, carefully stacked sandwiches, and draughts of energy-boosting coffee.
Mabuhay, mahal, kumain is the motto of owners Chonnie Richey and Czarina Hounsel at Zen Bistro & Dessert Bar—Tagalog for “live, love, eat.” It’s an appropriate mantra for a bakery shaped by the sisters’ Filipino heritage with flavors collected from across Asia and comforting, homey treats such as cake balls. The latter have been raved about on the Cooking Channel's Food Crafters and in D Magazine. Each day, the kitchen rolls them from fresh-baked cake, frosting, and add-ins such as dark-chocolate cookie dough and fruit to create more than 10 classic and seasonal flavors including Filipino-inspired creations such as a purple ube yam variety. The spheres are then dipped in melted chocolate and decorated with more chocolate, colored crystal sugar, and sprinkles. At the dessert bar, customers can also reach for piles of stuffed cookies, gourmet cupcakes, and cakesicles—a fluffier, chewier version of icicles.
Asian flavors come into the forefront in a bistro menu of traditional Filipino dishes, Asian tapas, and bubble teas brimming with black tapioca pearls. The savory side of Zen’s mini-empire has attracted nearly as much attention as the sweets for dishes as bracingly authentic as the spicy beef caldereta—a tomato-based stew of potatoes, beef, and liver—and as American-influenced as the egg-topped Tocino burger, which made CraveDfw’s Comprehensive Dallas Burger Guide.
In Mexico, life’s milestones are inextricably linked to chocolate. And Andrea Pedraza will never forget sipping her first mug of delicious hot chocolate on the morning of her first communion.
Her early memories of chocolate blossomed into a lifelong obsession. Now, at Cocoandré Chocolatier, Ms. Pedraza strives to match the purity of that first mug. She imports 100% natural, cocoa-butter-based raw chocolate from Belgium and Mexico to craft her European-style truffles, flavors them with exotic spices, and covers them with ganache made with butter and heavy whipping cream.
Her confections have earned a slew of positive press, including a spot on Good Morning Texas, which showcases her inventive chocolate molds in holiday-appropriate shapes. Her team can also create custom molds, allowing patrons to fulfill a lifelong dream of eating Rodin’s The Thinker.:m]]
It was a fateful night in January 1999 when the bellies of college sophomores Leon and Tiffany started to rumble. The two UT Austin students convened at Leon's apartment, where they whipped up a batch of chocolate-chip cookies in his oven. As they chewed on the warm, gooey fruits of their labor, the pair was struck by the idea to sell these freshly baked cookies to their fellow students. They began delivering treats to their peers during evening study breaks before expanding their customer base to include parents and Austin residents, all the while renting the back kitchen of a local restaurant to accommodate the growing demand.
Fifteen years later, the indulgent lure of Tiff's Treats has helped Leon and Tiffany open 13 locations throughout Austin, Dallas, and Houston. Within these bakeries, kitchen crews sculpt fresh dough into 10 types of cookies, supplementing the gooey morsels with decadent brownies and signature Tiffwiches—vanilla Blue Bell ice cream sandwiched between two warm cookies. Bakers hand-deliver batches every day, pulling them fresh from the oven instead of the overheated engine block of the delivery car.