From behind a frozen granite slab, the staff of Cold Stone Creamery uses twin spatulas to blend custom servings of ice cream and creative mix-ins to fit customers? exact specifications. Founded by Donald and Susan Sutherland in 1988, Cold Stone began under the hot Arizona sun, eventually spreading its frosty fingers to encompass more than 1,400 locations worldwide. Despite the size of the company, each location?s staff keeps up the handcrafted quality, making ice cream onsite every day and using those signature spatulas to create delicious pointillist art against the freezer wall.
High-quality ingredients?butter made with milk from local grass-fed cows, pure vanilla, and pink Himalayan sea salt?form the bases of Plum Dandy Cookies & Milk's baked treats. Its eight eclectic cookie flavors, made from scratch daily, also feature other sweet ingredients. For example, the Kettle Belle includes english toffee and kettle corn, and the Lemon Sun is made with lemon zest and citrus sugar. In addition to baking treats, the industrial-chic caf? hosts events, such as story readings and cookie-decorating parties.
In 1982, Joan Tallman started professionally baking in her kitchen using Swedish techniques she learned from her grandmother, eventually setting up The Bread Basket Bakery in 1992 within the classic 20th-century architecture of the former Pure Oil Company building. Joan and her expert staff, which includes her two sons Matthew and Chad, whip up fresh baked goods such as cake pops and pies daily as well as french toast breakfasts and hot paninis and salads at lunch. Patrons can ferry their aromatic comestibles home or take a seat at a cozy table to sip gourmet coffees and tea and admire the historic setting’s arched doorways and windows. The baking gurus also create custom cakes for events, saving leftover icing and presidential busts shaped out of fondant for a local pantry to which The Bread Basket Bakery donates all of its day-old products.
The New York Times has noted that “Mrs. London's would be much more at home on the Right Bank of Paris than in a resort town upstate.” The mention of Paris is fitting, as husband-and-wife team Wendy and Michael London specialize in French-inspired pastries. They bake using high-quality ingredients from local farmers, organic grains, Plugra butter, and Valrhona chocolate. Their chocolate mousse cake, filled with silken chocolate, is served with a white rum sabayon. Their bakery team even works through the night to ensure that fresh morning pastries, such as brioches, canneles, and croissants, are ready to greet the sun.
They also offer a café menu, which proffers savory European dishes such as tomato-zucchini quiche and croques filled with turkey or ham and gruyere. Staffers serve each meal in the bakery’s 1800s Americana-inspired shop, which boasts Brunschwig & Fils wallpaper, neo-classical mirrors, and replica Argand chandeliers that were featured in the film Amistad.