Joe, the Batchman behind BatchMakers Homemade Ice Cream, churns out rich and creamy frozen treats at his Cedar Grove?parlor. Additionally, he caters events of any size, from birthday parties to weddings and boat christenings done with chocolate sauce.
Before teaming up in 1953, Burt Baskin and Irv Robbins were seasoned business owners with their own ice-cream shops. The words “unusual varieties” shone high above each shop, signaling their respective owners’ passion for anything but an ordinary dessert experience. When the two got together, it was natural that they’d adopt the theme of “31 flavors,” one for each day of the month. Since then, Baskin-Robbins has introduced more than 1,000 flavors and opened shops with more than 5,800 franchise owners worldwide. Even their little pink tasting spoon has become a staple as a way to make flavor browsing an event by allowing guests to try specialties without paying cash or chicken-based trade for the privilege.
At Sofia's Ristorante, golden fried calamari splashed with a balsamic reduction and crabmeat-stuffed portobello mushrooms drizzled with gorgonzola sauce top tables draped in white tablecloths. These appetizers will soon be replaced by housemade pastas, chicken shrouded in prosciutto, shrimp in a sherry-wine sauce, or 1 of more than 10 types of veal dishes. Nearby, a chef stands in front of couple, readying their order—the house specialty linguine parmigiano-reggiano that is prepared tableside in a wheel of cheese.
On music nights, amid the sounds of hearty laughter, live jazz-music notes bounce off the bold red walls and into ears before shooting straight down to the toes. The sounds of clinking glasses filled with BYOB drinks add to the lively atmosphere.
Terra Tea Salon offers both full-service and ? la carte afternoon tea. Visitors enjoy a lovely spot for tea from China, Guatemala, India, Japan, Kenya, or Sri Lanka. The experience includes all the simple pleasures of teatime, with large pots filled with brewing fair-trade leaves and nibbling on finger sandwiches, scones and sweets, made from scratch with locally sourced ingredients. While sitting in the cozy tearoom at the Montclair Public Library, visitors sip from a huge selection ranging from ambrosia-plum white tea to golden-lily oolong.
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Juices headline the menu at Manhattan Juice Bar & Cafe, but these aren't just any juices. These raw varieties are created mostly from organic wheat grass, healthy vegetables such as kale and carrots, and though fresh apples and citrus fruits lend a tinge of sweetness. Fresh fruits also show up in the juice bar's smoothies, which are blended with protein powder and non-dairy milk, such as coconut milk, almond milk, and organic flax milk.
But Manhattan is so much more than a juice bar. The cafe's lunchtime menu includes healthy wraps and paninis, many of which feature vegan toppings such as house-made hummus. The desserts are just as tantalizing and healthy, with options such as gluten-free vegan energy balls and bars.