At KeysCake, apple pie à la mode, strawberry shortcake, and banana splits are all transformed into bite-sized morsels. But the bakers don't have a shrink ray—rather, they use fresh ingredients to translate the flavors of classic desserts into cupcake form. Each small batch of cupcakes is made from scratch, then topped with swirls of frosting and colorful garnishes such as fruit, cookies, or petite candies.
From Yogurtology’s self-serve frozen-yogurt stations, customers dispense frozen treats in fun flavors such as strawberry milkshake, red velvet cake, PB&J, chocolate macaroon, and flan. Sugar-conscious patrons can even find several flavors with no added sugars. Using their choice of fro-yo as a base, customers can create a personalized treat by combining multiple flavors or dispensing a single flavor in the shape of their monogram. The last leg of the yogurt-treat creation process happens at the toppings bar, where customers find a selection of hand-cut candy bars and fruit that is sliced throughout the day to ensure freshness.
Built in 1918, the Craftsman House's expansive, adobe-toned bungalow collapses time as visitors step onto a breezy veranda, walk past a lush carpet of flowers and fronds, and witness more American craftwork than they can shake an intricately whittled stick at. Blown glass, turned wood, and fine pottery and jewelry provided by a 300-strong network of local and national artists are just a few of the pieces that settle in at this homey abode. The building is so homey, in fact, that one artist hardly ever leaves. Surrounded by the courtyard, what was once an old-time carriage house is now the clay-caked studio of professional potter Stephanie Schorr. There, visitors can find her partway through many projects at once, crafting functional wares and feeding the carnival fire breathers that keep her kiln hot.
The historic hub of creative know-how hosts a multiplicity of events, including live music, gallery tours, and artistic workshops. In honor of the gallery's tireless community efforts, Craftsman House was named the 2011 Top Retailer for a Charitable or Philanthropic Event by Niche magazine.
Lace tablecloths, decorative flowers, and china cabinets filled with ornate teacups and saucers lend A Corner Of England the ambience of a vintage parlor. In these whimsical digs, Danielle Bruning and her mother, Julie Hicks, brew certified organic tea leaves harvested from two century-old gardens in Assam, India. The women pour fragrant brews of black, green, and antioxidant-loaded white tea into teacups, along with concoctions of their own devising that they flavor onsite. Their Green Tea Delight blend, for example, marries the classic potable with chamomile, mint, ginger, and fruit peel.
During the bistro’s signature high tea, guests snack on housemade scones and cakes or savory bites of sausage rolls, quiche, and croissant sandwiches. Parents can stop in with children for a kid-friendly tea experience as tykes dress up in faux-fancy hats and gloves while sipping from cupfuls of a juice-tea blend. Quenched cross-cultural caperers can relive their high-tea hijinks or recreate the boston tea party in the neighbor’s pool with bags of dry tea and teacups, available for purchase.
After Sweet! By The Cake Factory’s bakers pull the day’s cupcakes out of the oven, they stop short of slathering them with swirls of buttercream frosting or sprinkling on M&M's or nuts. Instead, they invite guests to decorate their own confections at a cupcake bar stocked with cookie and candy toppings. This hands-on approach lends itself to lively birthday parties, wherein a photographer snaps children in aprons, chef’s hats, and rubber Julia Child masks as they decorate six cupcakes each. The bakery’s Sweet to Others campaign proffers a predesigned cupcake each month whose proceeds benefit nonprofit organizations.
Since 1987, St. Pete Bagel Co.'s bakers have crafted New York–style bagels and both old-fashioned and yeast-raised donuts every morning. Rabbi Uriel Rivkin presides over each day's batch of certified-kosher dough rings bedecked with salt, onions, and poppy seeds, which share space with sandwiches and assorted spreads on the café menu. Fluffy and sweet specialty donuts such as PB&J, red velvet, and strawberry-glazed bike tire join coffee and espresso drinks for maximum donut slam-dunks. Around the shop, wood and leather stools seat diners, who can pass the time by admiring colorful flora and photos of bagels snapped at the food pyramid’s class reunion.