Karen Laing has followed her love for beautification down many paths, including attending school for aesthetician studies, acting as both beauty queen and pageant judge, and her current profession as a permanent-makeup artist. She meticulously draws on individual eyebrow strokes or enhances peepers with permanent eyeliner with the experience that comes not only from her extensive training, but also from having permanent makeup herself. In addition to makeup, Karen also individually bonds synthetic eyelashes to natural ones to create more lush and dramatic blinks, and treats signs of aging with wrinkle-reduction, sunspot-reduction, and other anti-aging therapies.
Though the entrees at The Dixie Cafe make the biggest splash across its menu marquee, they're threatened with gastronomical upstaging by the southern-style eatery's 19 sides and scratch-made gravies. The chicken-fried steak, for example, is a tender, hand-breaded fillet that fully blossoms with flavor only after chefs smother it with cream gravy and cheddar cheese. And the Cajun grilled catfish's down-home taste isn't fully developed until it is paired up with bites of turnip greens, fried okra, or a homemade roll. The classic platter meals take advantage of this by pairing an entree with two sides, rolls, and jalapeño cornbread and can be ordered "light" for a portion that's smaller than the regular size and easier to toss in the air and catch in your mouth.
Sufficient Grounds Cafe’s crew of baristas fills a.m. energy tanks with a menu bursting with delicious morning brews, breakfast and lunch fare, and tasty sweets. Staffers begin each morning by brewing up delicious coffee blends from around the world, as the espresso machine whirs into caffeinated action. Brew-thusiasts start with a base of espresso, mix in milk or soy, and stamp the potation with the dulcet taste of Torani syrups for decadent mochas or the signature Milky Way infused with chocolate and caramel. During the summer, when the days get longer and the southern hemisphere gets a bikini wax, patrons can sit on the open-air patio, surfing the year-round free WiFi while noshing on freshly made breakfast sandwiches, wraps, or pastries. The café boasts two convenient Little Rock locations, but if schedules are tight or legs have low battery power, free delivery is available within downtown.
Profiled in the Arkansas Times and on THV, Rock Town Distillery crafts small-batch artisan spirits using Arkansas materials. Local red winter wheat transform into vodka and gin, corn and wheat become the award-winning clear Arkansas Lightning, and charred white-oak barrels grown from Arkansasian barrel trees cradle young bourbon as it ages. Each day, the distillery hosts warehouse tours, complete with the grain-to-bottle production story of each spirit and tastings of all liquors at the end. The distillery has been named one of the 10 best Southern distillery tours by USA Today and one of the top 25 craft distillery tours in the U.S. by The Daily Meal.
Armed with just a single, generations-old cookie recipe, Great American Cookies opened its first store in 1977, and the rest is history. Today, the franchise boasts locations in malls across the country and nabbed a coveted spot on Entrepreneur magazine’s 2012 Top 500 Franchises in the baked-goods category. As the shop’s reputation grew, so did its menu as chefs churned out a mouthwatering roster of gourmet-cookie recipes, each created and carefully tested in Atlanta. The tempting options now include snickerdoodle, peanut butter with M&Ms, and chewy pecan supreme, as well as freshly baked fudge and cheesecake brownies, and cookie sandwiches stuffed with frosting. The real show-stoppers, however, are the giant chocolate-chip cookie cakes, which can be customized with sweet, celebratory messages or shopping lists penned in colorful icing.