From behind a frozen granite slab, the staff of Cold Stone Creamery uses twin spatulas to blend custom servings of ice cream and creative mix-ins to fit customers’ exact specifications. Founded by Donald and Susan Sutherland in 1988, Cold Stone began under the hot Arizona sun, eventually spreading its frosty fingers to encompass more than 1,400 locations worldwide. Despite the size of the company, each location’s staff keeps up the handcrafted quality, making ice cream onsite every day and using those signature spatulas to create delicious pointillist art against the freezer wall.
A locally owned business, Dagny’s has been slinging rejuvenating cups of java to Bakersfield residents since the mid ‘90s. Stop in to fill up a fuel tank with a small espresso ($1.50) or macciato ($2.50) while noshing on a fresh bagel ($1.50), scone ($2.25), or muffin ($2.25). Ponder the meaning of last night’s freakishly surrealist dreams with a crisp salad ($8.50) or hearty sandwich ($8.50). While visiting, kick back amid the laid-back ambience and enjoy the free WiFi access. Stick around to check out the regularly featured live music. Free of bawdy lumberjacks carelessly showing off their beard-growing skills, Dagny’s Coffee Company offers a friendly spot for soaking up good vibes and relaxing with friends.
A local institution for more than 40 years, Bakersfield Music Theatre pulls in patrons with a schedule of major Broadway musicals and other songful spectacles. Stop by on October 8 for a one-night-only performance of Direct from Vegas: Frank Sinatra, featuring Gary Corsello crooning un-remixed versions of Sinatra classics such as “Luck Be a Lady” and “Come Fly With Me” to the orchestral accompaniment of five full-sized musicians. The hit musical Chicago (November 13, 14, and 20) follows the exploits of a pair of femme fatales driven to murder by the stiff breezes of the Windy City, while "This and That: A Night of Song and Dance" (February 26) combines the mouth-powered melodies of Bakersfield Music Theatre with the legendary leggery of the Civic Dance Center. Hairspray (April 30, May 1, and May 7) caps the season with the tuneful tale of a teenage dance queen whose fancy footwork and well-kempt coiffure help her to defeat her enemies, the Philadelphia Eagles.
Family owned and operated since 1971, Caesar's Italian Delicatessen boasts a menu of classic sandwiches and sides and is famous for its pickled tongue, available by the pound ($11.49/lb) or in a handheld version ($5.95) bookended by bread and topped with lettuce and mild peppers. Enjoy namesake nourishment with the Caesar's Special ($5.75), pairing two kinds of salami with ham, mortadella, pepper cheese, lettuce, mild peppers, and sauce until it is fit for a ruler or any eater with a century-bridging hairstyle. For the strong-armed, the Deep-Pit Beef ($5.95) carries beef crowned with barbecue sauce or salsa, while the veggie sandwich ($5.50) combines avocado, tomato, lettuce, peppers, mayo, mustard, and provolone into a palate-pleasing product. Sides of marinated navy beans ($2.09/lb), a baked potato ($2.59/lb), and orzo pasta salad ($4.99/lb) play nice with main dishes despite secret ambitions of stardom. Feed a party of five or another television cast with a party platter ($15 for five servings) encompassing a tour of four meats and four cheeses with pit stops for olives, pickles, peppers, and bread.
Stephanie Caughell forged her career without compromise. Growing up, she wanted to be both an artist and a chef, so she followed her passions to pastry school, then to the kitchens of renowned dessert masters. Incorporating tips from celebrity chefs such as Anthony Bourdain and Mario Batali, Stephanie creates eye-catching cakes and cupcakes from scratch for her shop, Gimme Some Sugar.
Stephanie preps sweet treats for any occasion—whether it's a walk-in cupcake craving or a large wedding. Her versatility is reflected in each cake's presentation: some are elegant towers with petals or ivy winding down the sides, whereas others are carved into fairytale castles, designer handbags, or even Homer Simpson. They come in flavors such as cinnamon swirl and confetti, and hide cream fillings within their decadent tiers and hidden sub-frosting crawlspaces.
For John Thompson, it all began with the desire to help people of all sizes and fitness levels live a healthier lifestyle. As a nationally certified personal trainer and fitness coach, John used his know-how to devise the high-intensity Ultimate 30-Minute Workout Experience, an effective, time-efficient workout that targets the whole body. Held 13 times a week, each boot-camp-like session combines cardio, weights, and abdominal exercises to boost sluggish metabolisms, tone muscles, and evict stress from tense bodies. To bolster the workout regimen, John and his fit-savvy crew craft custom nutrition programs, providing an easy-to-follow eating blueprint that helps clients establish healthy noshing habits and fit back into their high-school swim goggles.