Born from the imaginations of two brothers running a flower shop, Edible Arrangements has grown from a single neighborhood storefront in Waltham, Massachusetts, to more than 1,100 locations throughout the globe, sending clusters of fresh fruit to deserving loved ones throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. Produce artisans arrange delicious bundles of candy-dipped apples, strawberries, and bananas alongside carved melon slices and morsels of orange, grape, and berry, combining the eye-catching color of a floral bouquet with every human's unconscious desire to feast on that bouquet. Guests stop in the store to enjoy fresh-fruit smoothies and salads or pick up baskets to present to sweethearts, friends, or family in person. For web-based gift giving, helpful package tracking allows customers to keep tabs on their remotely ordered bounties of seasonal citrus bouquets and cocoa-covered berries.
At multiple locations throughout the Sacramento area—including the newest one downtown—the chefs at Perko's Cafe are busy cracking fresh ranch eggs into omelets, skillets, and scrambles featuring ingredients such as portuguese linguiça or hickory-smoked ham. They turn hand-cut, marinated steaks into tri-tip sandwiches au jus, and they build towering double-decker burgers whose half-pound ground-beef patties teeter with cheese, lettuce, tomato, and thousand-island dressing. To match the beef- and barbecue-filled menu, many of the welcoming dining rooms have a decidedly Southwestern feel, with corrugated-tin accents, old-timey tools, and booth dividers that resemble a black-and-white cow or an incredibly complex inkblot test.
Recognized time and again as one of Sacramento's finest fish markets, Fins Market & Grill slaps down never-frozen filets of swordfish, salmon, mahi-mahi, and catfish. Catering to those looking to fill their own larders as well as those in search of a quick bite, the fishmongers preside over a menu of fish tacos, seafood salads and sandwiches, and hearty entrees with scalloped potatoes or rice pilaf as well as their brimming fish market. Flown in from across the country daily, the bistro's selection gives guests access to seafood freshness and diversity without the burden of living on a houseboat captained by Ernest Hemmingway.
Every October, the quiet vegetables fields at Bastiao Farms come alive with the laughter and shrieks of the annual Halloween festival. On one side of the grounds, a motor-powered train makes its way through the haunted corn maze, a massive, growing labyrinth supplemented by three additional corn and hay-bale mazes plus a Halloween-themed pumpkin patch. In other areas of the grounds, children and adults alike can navigate historically engaging sights that include a one-room schoolhouse and a scaled-down Wild West town featuring wooden saloons, storefronts, inns, and a covered wagon that secretly dreams of becoming a hardtop.
It's not hard to find an owner of Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op?odds are you can just walk in and point a finger. More than 12,000 people hold shares at the community-owned store, which has been open since 1973. The co-op's owners are unified by an interest in the central goals and standards: choosing local and natural foods high in quality, with a focus on seasonal and organic products.
To that end, the team at Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op works with more than 100 local farmers, growers, and food producers, and the fruits of these partnerships line the aisles. Depending on the season, the produce section might house asparagus from Riverdog Farm in Guinda or strawberries from Terra Firma Farm in Winters while other departments stock cage-free poultry, bulk grains, and craft beers.
At Sizzling Wok, chefs wield fiery-hot woks chock-full of stir-fry dishes from a menu of Chinese specialties such as peking pork, chow mein, and kung pao chicken. Combination plates grant the power of choice to hunger-havers, helping them pack plates with their choice of two stir-fry entrees, chow mein, fried rice, and a crispy fried drumstick ($7.99). Sizzling Wok's cooks learn to juggle up to two quarts of tender chicken breasts, aromatic spices, and crisp vegetables, which they toss into piping-hot woks for dishes such as the peanut- and jalapeño-laced kung pao chicken ($5.99/pt.). Pan-fried pot stickers burst with a filling of tasty meat and vegetables ($3.99 for six) and, when paired with fried tempura shrimp ($4.99 for six), demolish international side-dish-specific cravings.