When he first created his signature fried pastries at home, Anthony White knew he had a hit on his hands. So when his friends and family started raving about the contrast between the crispy fried pastry shell and the creamy texture of the fruity cheesecake filling, he decided to try selling his new recipe to the public. He now sells his treats by the dozen, incorporating flavors such as strawberry, blackberry, and raspberry milk chocolate into his pastries for tart and rich treats. Clients receive their treats frozen, ensuring they have a stockpile of hors d’oeuvres for their next party or night spent tucked indoors with a bottle of wine.
While most people would say they like chocolate with coconut, not many would say it changed their life. One exception, however, is Terri of Terri Does Desserts. As a child, she kept begging for German chocolate cake until her mother finally decided to kill two birds with one stone and teach her daughter how to bake. Little did Terri's mother—or Terri herself—know that that was the beginning of her baking career. She now makes her famous three-layer German chocolate cake alongside cookies, cobblers, and cupcakes for friends, family, and customers.
Naturally, Terri specializes in cakes and cupcakes for any occasion. She's got everything from 7-Up pound cakes to Snickers cupcakes, all with a range of coordinating icings and frostings. Her cookies also come in unique flavors, with seasonal varieties such as pumpkin as well as fruit-filled options such as blueberry white chocolate. Even her drinks have a bit of cake in them, as evidenced by frappes served in flavors such as red velvet and cookies and cream.
The glimmering glass case at Donuts, Yogurt & More showcases freshly-baked pastries from chocolate donuts topped with colorful sprinkles to giant cinnamon rolls oozing with frosting. Behind it, staffers bustle about, slicing up bagels to make sandwiches, layering croissants with sliced ham, and doling out scoops of ice cream and swirls of yogurt in a variety of flavors. The shop’s specialty beverages include icy mochas, creamy caramel lattes, and refreshing mango smoothies. And for their selection of "lite" drinks, staffers make health-conscious modifications such as swapping out cream for skim milk and bacon fat for no bacon fat.
At multiple locations throughout the Sacramento area—including the newest one downtown—the chefs at Perko's Cafe are busy cracking fresh ranch eggs into omelets, skillets, and scrambles featuring ingredients such as portuguese linguiça or hickory-smoked ham. They turn hand-cut, marinated steaks into tri-tip sandwiches au jus, and they build towering double-decker burgers whose half-pound ground-beef patties teeter with cheese, lettuce, tomato, and thousand-island dressing. To match the beef- and barbecue-filled menu, many of the welcoming dining rooms have a decidedly Southwestern feel, with corrugated-tin accents, old-timey tools, and booth dividers that resemble a black-and-white cow or an incredibly complex inkblot test.
Rivers Edge Cafe aims to put a spin on the traditional, Americana-steeped diner by creating a casual neighborhood eatery that serves slightly more imaginative versions of otherwise familiar comfort foods. Tempting diners with the opportunity to enjoy three meals a day, the chefs begin each morning by cooking a number of breakfast staples. Buttermilk pancakes and country fried steak are classics, but they also cook omelets using three farm-fresh eggs and everything from artichoke hearts and kalamata olives to smoked salmon and capers. They even update the traditional side of hash browns by creating a version stuffed with bacon, sour cream, and cheddar cheese. As the sun begins to set, the cafe serves its selection of hearty, home-style dinner entrees, including housemade meatloaf flavored with garlic, onions, and green bell peppers, and penne pasta tossed with crisp vegetables, shrimp, and a balsamic glaze.
Much like its menu, Rivers Edge Cafe's dining room exudes a decidedly casual vibe that is more reminiscent of a bistro than a diner. Gleaming wooden tables and low-backed booths fill the dark floors, which still manage to catch the light streaming through the walls of floor-to-ceiling windows. Tulip-shaped pendant lamps hang above a few of the tables, but, as night falls, the ceiling fans' lights help keep the space illuminated as they lazily spin above patrons' heads and keep guests cool as they sip on one of the available craft beers or wines imported from the future.