Featured in Phoenix Magazine’s Best of the Valley series and other posh publications, the bakers at Cupcakes swirl and twirl creamy frosting to transform their namesake miniature cakes into edible works of art. Made from scratch every morning at 4 a.m., the dainty desserts are available in seven daily varieties, as well as a selection of specialty and seasonal flavors that change as often as an amnesiac’s workout routine. Preorder a peck of Hollywood cupcakes, a red cocoa cake topped with cream-cheese frosting and dusted with edible gold luster, or ceremonialize the return of Tuesday with the caramel-and-peanut-butter goodness of the Bliss cake. The crunch cinnamon sugar topping of the Momo cake makes a fitting treat for a birthday party, business meeting, or root-canal celebration any day of the week, whereas The New Yorker cupcake combines the refined tastes of vanilla, chocolate chip, lemon, and social satire. Once patrons place an advance order, they can arrive at the sugary sanctuary to pick up their sweet feast after 10:30 a.m. the next day or whenever their personal trainer finally falls asleep.
After making a few pilgrimages to frozen-yogurt shops across the country, the founders of Yogurtopia came up with their own recipe for success. They only wanted to use high-quality frozen yogurt and toppings that emphasized both good taste and health.
Now, the shop’s creamy frozen treats swirl from self-serve machines in more than 90 flavors, such as nonfat swiss chocolate, low-fat cookies 'n' cream, and no-sugar-added wild strawberry. A bountiful toppings bar cascades fresh fruit, nuts, and candy options such as rainbow sprinkles, gummy bears, and Butterfingers on top of the frosty swirls. Best of all, patrons can choose to pile the frozen peaks and toppings over warm belgian waffles before heading to the weigh station to settle their debts.
Fresh, high-quality ingredients are the keys to Yogurtology's appeal, allowing guests to indulge in dessert while doing good for their bodies. In addition to diligently preparing fruit toppings daily, the staff members hand-cut each hunk of candy bar, creating delectably bite-size pieces that can be scattered over yogurt along with gummy candies, flakes of coconut, and more than 60 other garnishes, many of which are gluten-free and are carefully kept from commingling with the other ingredients. The resident "yogurtologists" also apply their attention to detail to the shop's atmosphere, replenishing and cleaning up the toppings bar throughout the day, helping to maintain a crisp, neat vibe.
Of course, toppings are only half the story. The stars at Yogurtology are the frozen yogurts, which range from classics to inventive flavors like pomegranate raspberry, Tart Nouveau, and award-winning Oatmeal Cookie. The self-serve machines offer up two no-sugar-added and two dairy-free options daily in order to accommodate dietary restrictions, and the shop shows respect to man's best friend by carrying cups of organic "doggie" yogurt.
Made from scratch, Lox Stock & Bagel's 28 fresh-baked bagels range from cheddar jalapeño and pumpernickel to cinnamon raisin and chocolate chip. For nearly 20 years, the eatery’s team has been pulling them out of the oven, topping them with whipped cream cheese, and stacking them with grilled chicken breast, Nova lox, and other sandwich meats. Their catering services can fuel special events with sprawling bagel spreads, and their gift baskets make a great way to surprise a friend, especially if you deliver one at night with a foghorn.
Unlike filling up cars with mashed-up dinosaurs, filling up your body with Sola coffee serves both the customer and the common interest. A local roastery supplies and spills the beans that are ground into each made-to-order coffee ($1.50–$2) or latte ($3–$4). If you're devil-and-angeling between the organic agave latte ($3.50–$4) or the locally sourced masala chai ($2.50–$3.50), a wonderful wizard of coffee will help you settle the debate using a wealth of bean-themed knowledge. Pair barista beverages with locally baked pastries ($2.50) and biscottis ($1.50) that make a handy on-the-go snack for haunted locomotive trips to unknown locations.
When they emerge from the La Dolce Pesca kitchen, the wedding cakes, cupcakes, and cookies are almost too pretty to eat. This makes sense, as the bakery's seasoned pastry chefs handle their culinary creations as though they were works of art, decorating them with elegant fondant flowers, dazzling swirls, and whimsical patterns. Their gorgeous baked goods have made appearances at many a wedding, baby shower, and bar mitzvah, as well as in the glossy pages of Arizona Foothills and Arizona Bride Magazine.
The chefs customize cakes and pastries to order, taking time to meet with the customers beforehand to discuss preferences and administer tastings. They invite clients to choose from a variety of cake flavors, fillings, and frostings, or to choose from a selection of gourmet layer cakes, such as the German chocolate with coconut pecan frosting or the lemon mousse with candied lemon zest. The chefs can also tailor cakes to accommodate clients with wide variety of unique dietary concerns, such a birthday boy with a gluten allergy or a groom who turns into a frog whenever he eats a pecan.