Combining her grandmother's recipes with personal artistry, owner and chief baker Virginia Rankin sculpts sweet treats that stun the eyes and mouth alike. Mert's succulent cakes brim with fresh, full ingredients like eggs, sugar, and cream, and sandwich spreadings of real fruit filling and fluffy frosting. The iconic Louie's Derby Cake, created for the Kentucky Derby, deliquesces on the tongue with tastes of butter praline, dark chocolate, and top-shelf Kentucky bourbon ($19.80 for a small, $36 for a large). Other fine cakes circling the nucleus of nuts and sugar include rum-moistened cranberry walnut spice cake and bourbon-drenched butter praline cake (both $22.50 for a small, $38.50 for a large).
Gleaning her baking skills from her mother and grandmother, Gigi's Cupcakes' eponymous owner opened her first cupcake hub in 2008, drawing upon her entrepreneurial spirit and gift for crafting beautifully topped cupcakes. The franchised cupcakery now has 50 locations, each of which churns out 11 daily-rotating flavors that are made fresh every morning. The shop's selection of more than 40 flavors includes Canadian Maple, Southern Comfort, and Champagne—a bubbly-flavored base topped with an edible pearl. Patrons can pick out sweet treats from the daily selection or preorder them at least one day in advance online, by phone, or via singing telegram.
Great Harvest specializes in baking tasty delicacies and healthy, homemade breads ($4.50–$8.50 per loaf) that are high in fiber, free of preservatives, and crafted with freshly milled flour every day. The bread selection changes each day of the week according to a monthly schedule; previous offerings include golden honey wheat and Dakota bread. Gluten-free and high-fiber breads are available in a variety of flavors, including gluten-free cinnamon-chip bread. For carb connoisseurs that prefer breaded delights that are easily juggled, Great Harvest bakes scones, muffins, cookies, cinnamon rolls, and bars.
The aromas of warming butter and sugar have called to mind the Heitzman legacy since 1891, when Jacob Heitzman baked and iced his first cake. It didn't take long for his airy desserts to build a fan base, one that grew each time the bakery added to the menu with new items, such as butter kuchen and strawberry whipped-cream cake.
Today, a full-scale deli joins the original baked goods at the Heitzman Traditional Bakery and Deli. On the sweet side of the shop, spice cakes burst with raisins, pecans, and fresh jam, protected from poking fingers by a caramel coating. Fresh-made pies, signature butter kuchens, and loaf cakes teem with fruits and nuts, and specialty cakes come in classic variations such as german chocolate and red velvet. The deli satisfies savory teeth with kettle-boiled bagels from Dooley's Bagels, as well as a selection of fresh soups and sandwiches. Salads bring together morsels of chicken, tuna, and fruit cut by hand, and catering trays carry turkey and ham dinners, box lunches, and casseroles to family meetings and business sing-alongs.
Caramanda's skilled bakers can whip up freshly baked cupcakes in maple pecan and caramel apple or sumptuous butterscotch and peanut butter chunk cookies for carryout. The bakery also employs skilled 3D cake-makers, who can morph fondant into a dragon for a birthday, or create a pair of wearable cake gloves for an upcoming boxing match.
For over thirty years, Great American Cookies has been sharing a generations-old family chocolate chip cookie recipe with the crumb-hungry masses. Each 16" round cookie cake serves 8–16 people and is baked fresh before being hand decorated by a talented cookie artist to match any holiday or special occasion, with a design made of rich, creamy frosting. Garner inspiration from the more than 30 categories of cookie cake designs posted on the company's website, or have an original designer dessert crafted to your specifications, ready to make a dessert-table appearance at a themed event, or to be framed and admired alongside your cherished Jacques-Louis David portrait of a napoleon crossing the alps.
Named for a small town in Napa Valley, Calistoga Artisan Sandwiches aims to recreate the atmosphere of that West Coast epicurean Elysium through its oven-warm baked goods and fresh café fare. Morning munchables are served until 11 a.m., and include breakfast sandwiches and gourmet omelets ($6.89–$7.99), which come sidekicked with potato-cheese casserole and a biscuit. Hunger-havers who prefer dining under a steadily reclining sun can lock their lips around artisan sandwiches, such as the pulled pork pressata ($7.99) or chicken pesto cordon bleu ($7.99), all of which can be wrappified for carb-loathers or anyone who fears breaking bread. Flora fanatics can feast upon salubrious salads, such as the Copper Canyon chicken Caesar ($7.99), while liquid-lovers can lap up piping hot soups from regular bowls, bread bowls ($1.59 extra), or Camilla Parker Bowles.