Stroll through an Oldsmar farmers market early in the morning and you might run into Andrew Koumi rifling through baskets of tomatoes in search of the ripest ones. The mastermind behind Green Market Cafe, Andrew was still in college when he hatched the plan to open an eatery that served healthy takes on sandwiches and soups. When discussing the inspiration behind the restaurant with reporters from the Tampa Bay Times, Andrew explained, "I wanted to create a place where I'd like to go and eat everyday."
Arms laden with bags of produce, Andrew returns to his café, where his chefs fold the fresh vegetables into crisp salads and toasty grilled flatbreads. Because everything is made to order, chefs are able to accommodate special requests, adding extra tomatoes or picking out any raisins that look too much like a California Raisin. Diners chitchat over cups of organic tea inside the colorful dining room, an open space tinted with greens, purples, and pinks to please the eye. The building is also home to Kiwi Frozen Yogurt, Green Market Cafe's sister shop, which serves wholesome yogurt with candy and fruit toppings.
Café Kiln offers a variety of ways to cultivate creativity. Paint and glaze a blank piece of pottery, fuse glass, tile your own mosaic, or nurse a tender hunk of clay into form. The all-inclusive art emporium doesn't charge a studio fee, and all supplies (glaze, tools, instruction, paints) are included. Start by selecting your piece of pottery or mosaic shape. Consult stencils and stamps for design direction if you're stumped on the design—with more than 100 colors to choose from, Café Kiln rivals the Crayola Big Box with its wardrobe of hues. Mosaic creations will be ready for you to take home that day. Allow a week for pottery pieces to be fired and glazed.
Voted Best Cookies in Tampa three years in a row by Tampa Bay Magazine, Kookie Krums specializes in decorative cookie bouquets to commemorate special occasions or to give as unique gifts. The bakery crafts seven flavors of cookies fresh daily, including chocolate chip, double chocolate, sugar, peanut butter, and oatmeal raisin, and can substitute Divvies nut-, egg-, dairy-free cookies with any order for an additional charge. Reward a baked-good fiend for keeping his paws out of unattended jars with a hand-painted big brown daisy flower pot filled with a half-dozen individually-wrapped cookies ($30.95), or buy Cookie Monster's vote for your Sesame Street mayoral bid with a dozen artfully arranged cookies ($35.95). Bouquets come in many themes, such as birthdays, anniversaries, new babies, and canine connoisseurs, ensuring that mouths will meet cookies and sweaters will need vacuuming regardless of the occasion. Along with flower-pot bouquets, Kookie Krums also sells smaller cookie-mug arrangements ($21.95) and cookies customized with personal photographs or corporate logos ($24 for a dozen).
Il Ponte Cafe’s chefs bake a bridge between Italian classics and the flavors of the greater Mediterranean. Herb-crusted salmon basks in rich lobster sauce, seared atop a grill until patterned with perfect lines or a cross-hatched portrait of the chef. The spears of kebabs thrust through both land and sea meats, accompanied to the table by freshly made hummus, and a lively fattoush salad casts off parsley, tomatoes, onions, pickles, olives, pita crisps, and feta cheese into a leafy lagoon of romaine and iceberg lettuce.
Classier than a gift bucket and more sensible than a gift spittoon, gift baskets are the perfect present for any occasion. Today's deal will cover them all: $50 worth of gift baskets and more at Incredible Edibles for $25. You must order your gift basket online, but you can either pick it up at Incredible Edibles' store in Clearwater or have it shipped to the most remote corners of the United States—making it the perfect gift for that special deadliest catcher in your life.Follow @Groupon_Says on Twitter.
Peace Love & Cake's staff of pastry perfectionists wields high-quality butter cream and a plethora of fine ingredients to conjure up a confectionery siren song that attracts sweet teeth from lands afar. The customizable cupcakes are delicately prepared to convert frosted fantasies into sugared certainties: choose from flavors such as red velvet, spice cake, raspberry, white chocolate, and more, then add extra style with customized frosting designs if desired ($0.50 per cupcake). Alternatively, the dessert party trays boast a choice of bite-size cupcakes, cheesecakes, cannolis, and more.