Although Jessica James officially created Fluff Cupcakery in 2010, that wasn’t when she started baking. Having grown up with a mother who was a cake decorator, Jessica took to baking like a duck to water, and she’s been practicing the are since before she knew how to cook. This passion naturally grew into Fluff Cupcakery. There, she offers five unique flavors of cupcakes every day. She also keeps her menu extra fresh by rotating in two to three different cupcakes varieties every day. Fluff Cupcakery stays open until 5 p.m. during the week, and 3 p.m. on Saturdays, but has been known to close up shop early if their cupcakes have sold out or they’ve used all the flour in California to make one Rose Bowl-sized cupcake.
Paradise Tans accommodates customers of all shade preferences with a fleet of tanning beds that deliver four levels of tan. Among these beds is the Beauty Angel bed, which stimulates collagen to diminish signs of aging, skin blemishes, and floating halos. The staff also offers custom airbrush spray tans, administered by hand for an even, natural-looking bronze.
Vibrant South American, North American, and Middle Eastern flavors come together between slices of bread at Mundos 2. According to a profile in the Monterey County Weekly, brothers Eli and Fernando Mundo, who also own Mundo's Cafe, not only use creative ingredients in their sandwiches—including paprika-flecked chicken breast and Argentinian tri-tip—but also slather them in secret housemade sauces.
Cream cheese and cranberry sauce join turkey breast, mustard aioli coats the pastrami sandwich, and housemade falafel sandwiches may be slathered in hummus. Burgers get flame-broiled before hitting buns, as do eggplant cutlets, red bell peppers, and other veggies.
Whenever you feel the urge to be fancy, head to Eddison & Melrose for high tea complete with mini tea sandwiches, scones, and cupcakes served on exquisite English bone china. Karen Anne Murray, Northern England–born chef and proprietress, strives to present a humble menu crafted from scratch with an eye toward presentation.
Chicken, fennel, and cranberry salad rests on small pieces of whole-wheat bread, and smoked salmon joins cream cheese on circular pumpernickel-bread bites. Mini scones welcome spreads of preserves, and mini cupcakes topped with from-scratch frosting end teatime on a sweet note.
However, you can’t just walk in from off the street when afternoon rolls around. Eddison & Melrose opens its doors to customers on a reservations-only basis, even if you just want to grab some british condiments, loose leaf tea, or bags of award-winning, all-natural granola from the boutique food shop.
The bean barons at Second Street Café sling brewed-to-order fair-trade coffee, specialized sippables, and breakfast and lunch fare that employs fresh organic produce. Shake off nightmares of showing up fully clothed at a nudist beach with the Jump Start ($2.85–$3.25), which drops a double shot of espresso in a cup of classic joe from the nearby Verve's Coffee Roasters. A selection of bagels ($1.65–$2.95), breakfast sandwiches ($3.95–$4.95), and breakfast burritos ($3.95–$4.25) ensure a mollified morning, while iced americanos ($2.50) and lattes ($3.50) cool off humid highway hoppers.
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 more than one-dozen states. Rich cocoa browns and soft pastels lend a nostalgic feel to each bakery, where everyday lava-powered ovens warm up batter made from fresh eggs, real butter, and cream cheese. Flavors such as chocolate chocolate chip, pecan praline, and white-chocolate raspberry remain constants on the menu, and a new 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 frosted with a signature blend of cream cheese and butter.