The popcorn aficionados at Yum Yum's Gourmet Popcorn craft a veritable rainbow of snack-worthy popped corn in a huge variety of flavors, daily. The staff scoops classic flavors like buttered popcorn, caramel corn, and kettle corn into big tins, or serves up bags and even popcorn balls for ideal on-the-go munching. They stock more unique varieties, too, ranging from colorful rainbow popcorn to pink watermelon and spicy jalape?o.
In an attempt to combat his food allergies and hypoglycemia, Steve Kuhnau began to concoct drinks in his home blender in the late '60s, tossing in various combinations of fruit, supplements, and proteins. Quickly discovering that the right fusions drastically improved his health, he worked to refine his revolutionary nutritional smoothie, and he opened a health-food store in 1973. He and his staff started slinging vitamins alongside the blended drinks, and the word quickly spread about the healthful beverages—Smoothie King was born. Since its noble birth, Kuhnau's smoothie empire grew to more than 600 franchised locations around the world, and there are more than 600 locations on this planet, too. Today, each location serves a long list of drinks to trim down, shape up, stay healthy, and occasionally indulge. Each of these verb-named mixes is made fresh to order.
Chef Geroy Rachel honed his skills at L'École culinaire in Memphis before opening Royal Flavors, a food truck specializing in smoky barbecued meats. Inside the mobile kitchen, he wraps bacon around chicken legs, flavors pork riblets with a dry rub, and smokes beef burgers to serve on butter buns with provolone cheese and pickles. Smoked cabbage salad or turnip greens with smoked pork round out meals, and slices of caramel cake or strawberry shortcake provide a sweet finish. Diners can take their food to go or eat beside the food truck, where picnic chairs surround a flat screen television.
Jamal Dauba opened Petra Cafe in 1998 with a vision of bringing diners healthy, flavorful Mediterranean cuisine. Now, his team of cooks prepares that cuisine at four locations. The culinary experts stuff pitas with grilled lamb and greek salad, fry crisp falafel, and infuse savory dips with eggplant or feta cheese. They also specialize in grilled paninis layered with prosciutto, mozzarella, and other Italian ingredients.
Situated inside Palladio Antiques & Art, Cafe Palladio satiates guests with a modest lunch menu of casual café fare, including 10 types of sandwiches, fresh salads, homemade soups, and its self-proclaimed “famous peach tea.” Surrounded by antiques, artworks, and decorative furnishings, diners dig into Dixie Delight with vegetables or slabs of moist coconut cake served upside-down or right-side-up at the customer’s request. Free WiFi is also available for lunchtime web surfing.
Roasted and brewed in-house, Republic Coffee’s global-savvy coffee drinks roll out a steamy rug for sandwiches stacked with smoked meats and soups made from scratch daily. Leafy greens and veggies burst from salads drizzled with just the right amount of dressing, and crostini dive into creamy baths of garlic hummus. The cozy coffeehouse’s doors open as the sun rises to greet diners with fluffy eggs, breakfast sandwiches, and malted belgian waffles. Sleek black chairs and leather booths scattered throughout the interior keep night owls comfy until closing time at midnight, when the overcaffeinated crowd works off excess steam by bouncing against exposed-brick walls.