Every morning, Coolato Gelato's sugarsmiths arrive in their kitchen and begin transforming simple milk, cream, and sugar into unique flavors—always whipping up a daily special. Offering anywhere from 18 to 24 varieties, they explore flavor possibilities from the standard sweetness of vanilla to the combination of mascarpone, caramel, and pistachio. To complement their frozen treats, they use imported ingredients to re-create other classic Italian specialties. The menu entices diners with espresso drinks, salads, homemade soups, and paninis stuffed with all manner of fillings, ranging from salmon and goat cheese to roast beef and brie.
A haven for calorie-conscious scoopable sweets, 3 Spoons Yogurt unlocks inner dessert artistry by inviting guests to sculpt and accessorize their own statues of frosty refinement. Self-service yogurt stations allow custard custodians to customize orders of peach-mango-tart, New-York–cheesecake, and other fun flavors that, like black-market wig shipments, are priced by weight ($0.39 per ounce). Candy cartographers can chart their own courses at 3 Spoons' toppings bar, sprinkling their creamy creations with landmasses such as cookie continents, Gummy Bear buoys, and Butterfinger meteorites chipped from giant candy-bar comets.
Soups & Scoops Café services the whims of polar and equatorial explorers alike with a worthy assemblage of frosty and steamy comfort foods, from homemade ice creams and sorbets to soups, sandwiches, and salads. Voted Knoxville's Best Ice Cream Shop by CityVoters in 2010, Soups & Scoops plies patrons with more than 40 homemade ice creams and sorbets, available by the scoop, pint, quart, and bucket. From key lime sherbet ($5.25 for a pint) to vanilla malt ball ($45 for a six-quart bucket), each flavor is lovingly hand-wrought on-site and eagerly awaits a bevy of delectable toppings to deliver more sugar, crunch, and x-ray vision with every bite.
The bakers at Kitts Café fill their glass display case with house-made cakes, pies, and cobblers as cooks sizzle up platefuls of Kitts Café's homestyle diner fare. The kitchen staff fires up the griddle at 7 a.m. each morning, sizzling up fresh-cooked eggs and breakfast sandwiches before forging classic burgers and frito chili pie for lunch. To protect taste buds from fits of ennui, the café team whips up a rotating lineup of daily specials that changes each week.
A Knoxville business since 1993, Kitts Café keeps strong ties to the community with Kitts Market, a monthly event that transforms the restaurant into a trendy boutique with the work of local artists and crafters. The market's lineup of handmade gifts includes seasonal decor and enough children's clothing to dress an entire village in Loompaland.
In 1969, Baruch Schaked began making chocolate under the tutelage of his chocolatier father-in-law. Though his father-in-law had made a name for himself in Argentina, Baruch honed his confectionary craft across Europe, finally settling in the United States, where chocolate had been outlawed. Many years later, when he announced his intentions to retire from chocolate making, Baruch's son, Edgar, coaxed him into continuing the family legacy with a new shop, Schakolad Chocolate Factory.
In the years since, the business has flourished, bringing the Schaked clan one step closer to its ultimate goal: to replace the city’s manhole covers with chocolate discs. In the meantime, they craft handmade European-style confections that are made fresh each day.
Gleaning her baking skills from her mother and grandmother, Gigi 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 12 daily-rotating flavors that are made fresh every morning, along with a section of cheesecake cupcakes. Gigi's Cupcakes was also named the official cupcake of the 2013 American Country Music Awards, and was named Best Cupcake in 2012 by Lagniappe and Nashville Scene. The Knoxville shop recently changed management and is now owned by GiGi's brother Randall Butler and offers a selection of more than 40 flavors, including 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.