Coffee & Treats in Wellesley

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Named Best Cupcake by Boston magazine in 2010, Five Bites Cupcakes sates voracious sweet teeth with a creative selection of petite pastries prepared with fresh ingredients. Simultaneously appease finicky uncles ravenous for red velvet and picky preschoolers pining for pumpkin with a customized assortment of delectable treats, each one sporting a thick tam-o'-shanter of luscious and ornate frosting. Mouths homesick for native Massachusetts will find comfort in the boston-cream cupcake, a hand-sized dessert filled with sweet cream custard and basted with dark-chocolate ganache, and candy connoisseurs hungry enough to lick the wellington boots of a Candy Land cropper can sample the lemon-drop cupcake. Those with an irresolute palate can stay perched atop the fence with a marble cupcake, a treat that brings together the polarizing flavors of white and chocolate cake for a therapeutic hug before undergoing a healing session of delicious mastication.

141 Linden St
Wellesley,
MA
US

Baker Adie Sprague, who made a splash as a participant on Food Network’s Cupcake Wars, showcases her meticulous dessert designs at Treat Cupcake Bar. She crafts at least a dozen flavors every day, including seasonal goodies such as candy apple—an apple cake smothered with cinnamon frosting. Adie also whips up separate batches for gluten-free and vegan patrons, such as chocolate cake crowned with mint cookies ‘n' cream frosting.

Rather than hog all the decorating fun for itself, Treat invites guests to make their very own creations at its namesake bar. There, you’ll find four varieties of both cake and frosting, plus more than 20 other toppings, such as Pop Rocks and chocolate-covered pretzels. To refine your decorating skills, sign up for one of Treat’s holiday-themed classes and learn to make seasonal shapes such as turkeys for Thanksgiving and smashed calculators for National Do Long Division by Hand Day.

1450 Highland Ave
Needham,
MA
US

Joel's at Needham Square proves that “penny candy” isn’t a myth, unlike $0.25 haircuts and dollar automobiles. The quarter-century-old cornucopia of gourmet sweets brims with buckets of bulk gummies, jellybeans, and hard candies that complement a selection of seasonal sweets and fine Vermont chocolates. Joel's latest owners took over the store in 2006 with the goal of upgrading and expanding its selection, resulting in the store’s gourmet candy baskets, as well as a collection of plush dolls, stationery, and kitchenware. Satiated sweet teeth can step aside for Joel's more savory selection of gourmet grilling sauces, fragrant teas, and hand-bottled jams.

996 Great Plain Ave
Needham,
MA
US

Judy Rosenberg didn’t set out to be an award-winning chef or an NPR-lauded cookbook author. The owner of Rosie’s Bakery found her calling in 1974 after attending art school and gobbling desserts at some of New York’s finest bakeries, becoming inspired to forge her own batch of sweets. When the staff of a local cheesecake shop got hooked on her homemade cookies, she knew she’d found a recipe for success. Since then, she’s expanded her culinary repertoire to include fudge-nut brownies, bavarian-cream fruit tarts, and more than 14 types of muffins and scones.

Each recipe teems with real, old-fashioned ingredients, such as butter, cream, sugar, and edible monocles. Cakes come in circular layers and rectangular sheets, boasting flavors such as carrot and mocha. Filled with snickerdoodles and chocolate-chip rounds, the cookie lineup conjures more childhood memories than a psychiatrist who rides to work in an ice-cream truck.

9 Boylston St
Chestnut Hill,
MA
US

Today's deal gets you the gift that can say everything from "Happy Birthday" to "I'm sorry I hugged your uncle, Mr. Tapdance." For $10, you send $20 worth of fine chocolates at Chocolate.com anywhere in the U.S., Canada, or 16 other countries. Along with its wide variety of chocolate, you can apply that $20 toward shipping and the site's Gifts on Sale section. There's a limit of one Groupon per checkout, but there's no limit to how many you can buy.

Chocolate.com is a network of chocolate shops across the USA and Canada, with one in nearly every major city. Start by browsing Chocolate.com's easy-to-navigate website. You can shop according to occasion, price, type of chocolate, and even ingredients if the next person on your list has dietary concerns. If you're seeking something that falls within your Groupon, check out the best-selling Gifts Under $25, such as dark-chocolate brownies ($15.50), premium truffle assortments ($17), and Ghirardelli Galore ($20). Once you've made your selection, Chocolate.com will send the order to the closest local shop—ensuring that your giftee gets fresh, handmade chocolate, and not some inedible brownish brick that's been sitting in a warehouse since the Carter administration decided to only travel on horseback. You can track your order online through every stage of delivery, including pre-natal, pupation, and Dr. Wily's stage in Megaman 2.

Reviews

Business Week and Boston.com feature Chocolate.com:

  • You can get just about any chocolate candies sold nationwide at the chocolate.com website. – Boston.com
  • ... an online emporium, complete with boutique sweets, recipes, and articles that run the gamut from the health benefits of dark chocolate to the history of chocolate Santas. – Aaron Pressman, Business Week

188 Needham St
Newton,
MA
US

Lauded by Daily Candy for accommodating raw and vegan diners, Prana Restaurant balances native temperatures with mouthwatering flavors in organic and gluten-free dishes. After being greeted by fresh hair streaming through wide-flung windows, diners dip flora-favoring taste buds into garlic, veggie, or fig balsamic pizza on naan crust ($10). Chefs trade off gluten-rich pasta for ribbons of zucchini in the pesto primavera entree, served raw or slightly warm with spinach, a seasonal garden medley, and almond-and-cashew cream sauce ($16). Chard leaves or chia-seed shells trump humdrum tortillas in a lunchtime burrito that bulges to bursting with vegetables, beans, guacamole, sour cream, and salsa ($12). Refuel after fatigue-inducing feasts or all-night model-UN deliberations by chugging a coconut-rich SuperCharger smoothie tinged with cacao, dates, and cashews ($9.75).

292 Centre St
Newton,
MA
US