In 1997, friends Dena Tripp and Debra Shwetz set out to create a luscious, melt-in-your-mouth bundt cake. What began as an endeavor in their own home kitchens soon blossomed into a bustling business with bakeries in 21 states. Rich cocoa browns and soft pastels lend a nostalgic feel to each bakery, where every day ovens warm up cake batter made from fresh eggs, real butter, and cream cheese. Flavors such as chocolate chocolate chip, red velvet, and white-chocolate raspberry are favorite staples, and a new seasonal flavor makes a guest appearance each month. Cakes come in several sizes, from the standard 8- or 10-inch bundt to the single-serving bundtlet and the bite-size bundtini, all crowned with signature cream cheese frosting.
Kolache Factory takes its namesake traditionally fruit-filled Eastern European pastry and expands its filling horizons to stretch from breakfast to dinner. Though some breakfast kolaches still contain the standard fruit fillings, such as lemon, strawberry, and apricot, they’re joined by more creative combinations such as sausage and cheese or chocolate cream cheese. Lunch and dinner pastries hold hearts of polish sausage, barbecue beef, and jalapeno cheddar. Kolache Factory also bakes other pastries including cinnamon rolls and strudel and sells party trays of its signature creations for gatherings or Y3K freezer stockpiles.
Smokehouse Bar-B-Que’s dinner and lunch menus satisfy cravings across the protein spectrum with a selection of hickory-smoked beef, pork, chicken, and seafood. High-quality cuts mingle between the Junior Smokehouse’s sesame-seed buns ($8.45), which grant diners a choice of two savories such as beef brisket, polish sausage, or time-traveling triceratops shank. The Monterey chicken's 8-ounce grilled breast nestles in a corn-dust bun alongside its eponymous cheese, ham, bacon, and dijon-mustard bedmates ($9.25), and chefs catapult a 16-ounce whole catfish through a Cajun-sauce and lemon-butter waterfall before bringing it in to land gently next to a house salad and choice of side ($14.95). Also flanked by a patron-preferred side dish, the Kansas City Strip rolls a 12-ounce certified Angus beef steak down sizzling hickory logs and into eagerly awaiting mouths ($23.95).
To create the ultimate hot bean juice, Bruegger's has teamed up with Green Mountain Coffee, which deftly wields the double-edged sword of rich, flavorful coffee and socially responsible fair-trade practices. Bruegger's coffee menu offers a slurpable rainbow of classic brews and unusual, globetrotting options ($1.59 for a small). Relish region-specific flavors and aromas from the misty hilltops of Tanzania, the lush farms of Mexico, or the turbulent moons of Endor. Membership in the Bottomless Mug Club also ensures free refills of steamy chai tea and hot chocolate (both $1.79 for a small), soft drinks ($1.59 for a small), and an assortment of hot teas ($1.39 for a small) for java-less jaunts. Although today's Groupon does not cover food, Bruegger's offers delectable deli eats to pair with your bottomless beverages, including kettle-boiled bagels, breakfast sandwiches, and lunch fare.
Jim Sheridan's custard shop is packed with old-fashioned nostalgia. And it's not just the decor ? Sheridan's desire to create and sell custard sparked from his own childhood memories of adventuring to upstate New York to get his hands on the frozen treat. Now at Sheridan's Frozen Custard, Jim not only opts to incorporate creamy chocolate and vanilla flavors topped with everything from mangoes to graham crackers to a variety candies, but he views the real cherry on top as top-grade customer service. Caramel pretzel crunch concretes, fresh-baked strawberry shortcake Sundays, and cookie dough pies further satisfy sweet tooths. For those who prefer a straw to a spoon, the shop's shakes, malts, and smoothies are there for the sipping.
After years of perfecting those frozen treats Jim set out to conquer the world of burgers. To do so, he pulled from the same old-fashioned recipe book that inspired his sweet treats. The Olathe location's new food menu is filled with American favorites, from grilled-to-order steakburgers to hand-cut fries dusted with a kiss of salt. No matter the order, each meal is made with fresh, locally sourced ingredients, including grass-fed beef. Visitors can settle down at tables to enjoy their burgers and sandwiches or grab them to go at the convenient drive-thru.
Best Regards Bakery's team of cake mavens sates sweet teeth with moist melees of cookies, cupcakes, and brownies—each crafted from scratch and thoroughly taste-tested. Choose from several types of soft-baked cookies, each weighing a quarter-pound and cloaked in cellophane in order to stay fresher than a shrink-wrapped daisy. Toby's Ugly Banana cookies ($2.99 each) develop acute attractions to lips, and the signature cranberry orange's tangy fruits, European butter, and crystalline sugar tickle tongues ($3.49 each). A roster of seasonally rotating cupcake all-stars includes the Madagascar bourbon vanilla and the sprite, gooey limoncello ($3.25 each). The bake shack boosts morning routines with its gooey, gourmet cinnamons rolls ($3.49 each), each large enough to muffle the noise of intrusively trumpeting stomachs and delectable enough to savor while reclining on the bakery's attached patio.