When people say Watson Drugs and Soda Fountain has a checkered history, they’re talking about the ever-present tablecloths, which flaunt cheery red-and-white squares that whisk diners back to the 1950s. Here in the more than a century-old establishment, cooks still stack pancakes higher than the Statue of Liberty’s beehive hairdo as kids ogle retro candies such as Necco wafers, Sweethearts, and Clark bars. Come lunchtime, half-pound burgers sizzle on the grill, alongside toppings such as bacon and mushrooms.
Near a vintage Pepsi-Cola sign, soda jerks uncap bottles of root beer and scoop banana floats into glass boats en route to white leather booths or a sunny outdoor patio. The shop also summons nostalgia with its shiny jukebox, vintage postcards, and iconic storefront, which has been featured in films, commercials, and PSAs for time travelers.
The Cozy Cave, or living room, of Chapman Coffee House pays homage to Bahá'u'lláh, the founder of the Bahá'i faith. For a two-year period, the spiritual leader sought refuge in a cave, embracing seclusion as an opportunity for meditation. Acknowledging his example, the founders of Chapman Coffee House established the Cozy Cave as "a place for meaningful conversation." On the walls, chalkboards display words of wisdom, dictated by Bahá'u'lláh, as well as artwork from Orange High School students. Groups meet here for daily interfaith devotions; individuals often come to quietly contemplate.
In the kitchen, baristas accentuate Diedrich coffee beverages with artistic flair, manipulating foam into the shape of hearts, houses, and flowers. Cooks dedicate their attention to preparing white-chocolate brownies—a house specialty—as well as grilled paninis. On occasion, live musicians fill the dining area with song. In the winter, a fire crackles in the cozy cave to warm up the dwarves who live in the back.
Mary and Bruce took the reins at ABC Cake Decorating Shoppe and Bakery a little more than a decade ago; however, the bakery and shop has been dishing out tasty baked treats for more than 50 years. The bakers craft cupcakes, cookies, desserts, and custom cakes for all occasions, with more than 10 cake flavors that include banana, carrot, lemon, and red velvet. They supplement these with 25 filling options, including cream, mousse, fruit, and other fillings. The teaching studio holds regular classes for chefs of all levels, in subjects ranging from cake decorating and chocolate 101 to gingerbread-house decorating and cookie baking.
Juicy tidbits of chocolate-dunked fruit arrive on the doorsteps of family and friends, done up in colorful bouquets and candy boxes by the skilled fruit arrangers at Edible Arrangements' more than 1,100 franchises worldwide. The company's in-house chocolatiers drizzle albion strawberries and daisy pineapples in a trio of chocolate flavors. Once properly chocolated, the workers organize the preservative-free sweets into lush arrangements that resemble flowers in bloom. Customers can choose to plop their bouquets in a variety of vessels, including vases, mugs, and sports- or holiday-themed containers that add a personal touch to the edible gifts. Alternatively, customers can opt to adorn gifts with the cheery, red lids of candy boxes, nestling 12 chocolate-dipped morsels inside to build anticipation and determine if loved ones have x-ray vision as they guess whether fruit will come dusted in shredded coconut or drizzled in white chocolate.
Begin your yogurtsperience by skiing down a slope made from one of four flavors: natural, pomegranate, mango, or blueberry. Then trigger an avalanche of toppings, engulfing your chosen base in wave after wave of fresh fruits such as lychee, pineapple, and peaches or more toothsome cashews, chocolate chips, and even Captain Crunch. A single serving of plain yogurt goes for $2.50, while a single with up to three toppings costs $3.45. You can also nab a yogurt be-dolloped fruit salad ($4.50–$5.25) or blend it all together for an on-the-go smoothie ($4.95).
Grab a bagel ring for all 12 fingers ($10.95 a dozen), or grab an individual for a baby bracelet ($1.14 per bagel). Many toppings, cream cheeses, and spreads are also available. Although Bagel Me!'s name is both direct and delicious, the menu expands beyond the realm of the round. Breakfast items such as gooey cheddar and egg melts served alongside cinnamon baked apples ($4.19) and freshly blended smoothies ($4.39) will cause smiles at sunrise. Afternoon diners can hang fangs on tri-tip steak sandwiches such as the jalapeno-pineapple pairing, loaded liberally with caramelized onions, Tillamook cheddar, and monterey jack cheese ($7.49). Or fork up a variety of starters, such as Irish nachos based in French fries and topped with bacon, onions, cheddar and jack cheeses, and lucky wishes ($5.79).