Southern Sweet Potato Pie Company specializes in creating authentic, freshly baked New Orleans desserts made with all-natural ingredients and steeped in old family recipes and Deep South flavors. Surprise your taste buds and their sweet teeth frenemies with the Ooey Gooey cake, an 8"x11.5" two-layered palate-approving confection. The bottom layer is a bastion of buttery yellow cake, smoothed with a top layer of decadent cream cheese and powdered sugar, and filled with a middle layer of flirtatious yet chaste demeanor. The cake is frozen to maintain its quality and can be easily thawed before serving.
Armed with just a single, generations-old cookie recipe, Great American Cookies opened its first store in 1977, and the rest is history. Today, the franchise boasts locations in malls across the country and nabbed a coveted spot on Entrepreneur magazine?s 2012 list of Top 500 Franchises in the baked-goods category. The shop?s reputation grew, and so did its menu as chefs churned out a mouthwatering roster of gourmet-cookie recipes, each created and carefully tested in Atlanta. The tempting options now include snickerdoodle, peanut butter with M&M?s, and chewy pecan supreme, as well as freshly baked fudge and cheesecake brownies and cookie sandwiches stuffed with frosting. The real showstoppers, however, are the giant chocolate-chip cookie cakes, which can be customized with sweet, celebratory messages or shopping lists penned in colorful icing.
Domes of vivid fuchsia, blue, and chartreuse arc up out of their white cups, their icy texture a treat for the eyes as well as for the taste buds. Shivering Sam's Snowballs are available in more than 50 flavors, ranging from the traditional (banana, cantaloupe, and coconut) to the completely unexpected (nectar, tiger blood, and dill pickle). But regardless of which you choose, every icy dollop can be customized to hide a generous scoop of ice cream at its core. Other optional add-ons include condensed milk and chocolate syrup, but buried ice cream, according to Sam's staffers, is the hallmark of a truly New Orleans-style snow cone.
They're just as proud of the local elements informing their second menu item: tamales. The newest addition to the Sam's portfolio, these cheesy crowd-pleasers offer a warm, savory alternative to the sweet chill of shaved ice. And they, too, are made New Orleans-style, in part because you can blow into them and play perfect zydeco music.
The decor of the Kupcakes Etc., with its alternating lines of dark and light lime green, brings to mind the crinkled ridges and grooves of a cupcake wrapper, perhaps putting visitors in the mood to select from the menu's 20 cake and frosting flavors. Strawberry-shortcake, lemon-meringue, and red velvet cupcakes can be consumed in one of four sizes, ranging from bite-size minis to gigantic cakes that feed up to 10 people. Cakes can be decorated with chocolate candies and multicolored sprinkles, which sends out a festive vibe—much like hitting a piñata with a folded Ouija board does.
The confectionary apothecaries at The Sweet Life forge fermented cream into an ambrosial array of healthy taste bud varnishes. Although yogurt is usually simply associated with homespun remedies for venomous baboon bites, The Sweet Life adds to the frozen variety's recreational appeal by serving it in nine piquant flavors, including chocolate, cake batter, pomegranate, raspberry, and cookie. Once customers select a flavor, they can adorn their milky magnum opuses with a paisley pastiche of nuts, cheesecake chunks, granola, candy, or other comestible accoutrements. The Sweet Life charges by the ounce, allowing customers to customize the size and scope of their creations ($0.39/oz., $1,872/full-sized William Taft statue).
Cold Stone's ice cream, made fresh in stores every day, inhabits a quantum flux between soft-serve and traditional ice cream, with a rich, creamy texture that whispers tales of its super-premium quality as it glides over taste buds. The ice cream generously welcomes dozens of toppings, as traditional as crumbled cookies and chopped nuts or as quirky as granola and black licorice. Choose your favorite ice cream from among dozens of silky flavors, such as Irish cream and butter pecan. Then make certain no one will try and steal a taste by topping it protectively with brownies, gumballs, and cherry pie filling. Whatever Frankencream you create, it'll be scooped cold off the grill into a freshly made waffle cone or bowl. Cold Stone's ice cream and toppings vary between seasons and location, and they also offer sorbet and an array of lighter toppings such as fruit and honey. Ice-cream creations run between $4 and $6, depending on size.