Before Paul and Jared Smith came onboard, the company that became Great Lakes Chocolate & Coffee Co. had no coffee to speak of: it only sold chocolate by the bag, box, or individual morsel. But the brothers recognized how well their rich chocolates complemented a hot cup of joe, and by 2004 they started roasting their own beans. Today, those yield coffees such as the Black & Tan, a combination of dark and light roasts, and the Honduran High Grown, which is harvested on the wings of airplanes.
The coffees add a jolt to Great Lakes? hot drinks, including seasonal selections such as the egg nog latte. Organic and decaf teas, as well as cold beverages such as frozen lemonade and fruit smoothies, round out the shop?s drinkable options, all of which complement this family owned and run business? stock of sweet treats.
Celebrating 10 years in business in 2012, Countryside Catering & Cafe conquers hunger with homemade dishes crafted from fresh ingredients. The family-run operation doles out skillets, burgers, and daily specials from within a cozy café setting, and also feeds social gatherings big or small with full-service catering options, as well as with its mobile concession stand.
The pizza makers at Palio's Cafe crown regular, whole-wheat, and gluten-free crusts with fresh vegetables, preservative-free sauce, and roasted chicken. Chefs take the burden of putting together the best toppings with 17 specialty pizzas that pair gourmet ingredients such as artichoke hearts, roasted chicken, and fresh basil pesto. Ovens create bubbling pies, stuffed calzones, baked ziti, and italian sub sandwiches that servers carry through both chic, cozy locations. Leather-lined booths and flat-screen televisions keep diners comfortable and entertained while they enjoy Palio's BYOB policy and sip wine or Capri Sun pouches brought from home.
The staff at Big Apple Bagels toasts bread and bakes 18 different flavors of low-fat and low-cholesterol bagels using a classic recipe before slathering them with 10 different flavors of cream cheese or topping them with deli meats, cheeses, or breakfast favorites. The team also bakes cake-like muffins made with soybean oil, which produces a sweet treat low in cholesterol. Fresh-brewed coffee complements both the sweet and savory menu items while fueling heated discussions about the bagel’s natural enemy, time.
With 15 finger-devouring flavors of wings and a menu offering shrimp and salads, Wing Zone has become a national go-to restaurant for delivery and take-out. Nosh on wings in their boneless or original styles, with orders ranging from 5 to 50 pieces, and use the flavor's heat index (1 for mild, 4 for hottest) to determine the sauce's spiciness.
Though he may be a long way from his native Texas, Joe Lopez is true to his roots. At Joe's Texas BBQ, he maintains a strong loyalty to Texas-style barbecue, tending to his "slow and low" smoked meats that are prepared and smoked fresh daily on site. Lopez uses secret rubs to enhance the flavor of the meats, which include hot links, ribs, pulled pork, chicken, and of course brisket.