Considering Juan and Alvaro Gorrin studied medicine and business, and went on to forge careers in real estate and banking, it's probably surprising to many that they found their ultimate success in a totally unrelated field: baking. The Gorrins, who were born in Spain but moved to Venezuela in their youth, found there was a demand for European-inspired baked goods in South America. They developed the Don Pan brand in Venezuela in 1982, and eventually relocated to Miami, where they opened their first North American bakery in 1995.
Today, their menu maintains distinctly Spanish and South American accents. A bounty of pastries includes guava danish and tres leches, as well as brazo gitano, a sponge cake rolled with chocolate or cream that's popular in both Spain and Venezuela, as well as the section of Canada that uses cake as currency. There are also plenty of savory menu items, including cachapas—corn pancakes served with meat or cheese—and Venezuelan-style tamales bursting with pork, beef, chicken, and veggies.
Each Cosi locale aims to channel the charm of a small Parisian café by serving up a menu of quality food and an atmosphere suited for conversation. Warm stone-oven-baked flatbreads feature a two-millenia-old recipe and lay the foundation for many of Cosi's sandwiches and pizzas. The clean flavors of the signature tomato, basil, and mozzarella sandwich ($5.99) find a rustic home within warm, crusty walls and the saucy star of the barbecue-chicken pizza ($12.99) travels to mouths with an entourage of smoked gouda, red onion, and cilantro trained in grappling grabby tablemates. Veggie-based bites include the crunchy steak-house salad ($7.79) coated in blue-cheese dressing and fresh-cracked pepper.
The Pasco County gourmet cupcakery boasts custom organic cupcakes, baked from scratch with only the finest local ingredients. Peruse Crave's cupcake catalog to select a flavor for your dozen, and set into motion the conception of your confection. Opt for a dozen nutty peanut-butter cakes, chocolaty treats, or superbly pink, strawberry-buttercream-topped strawberry cakes to complement your tongue’s color. The a lemon-injected lemon-zinger cake will satisfy sour-fruit fans, whereas the classic red-velvet cake is sure to please classic-cake connoisseurs. Vegan and gluten-free cupcakes are available upon request.
The staff at Fro-Yo Yogurt oversees an expansive, self-serve dessert bar teeming with 15 rotating frozen yogurts and more than 70 toppings. Guests swirl low-fat, dairy-free, and sugar-free yogurts into their cups, burying such gourmet flavors as pistachio, pumpkin pie, and chocolate in as many toppings as they like. Spoons clatter in dishes of fruits and candies, ideal for topping the desserts or putting into your gas tank if you have a crush on a mechanic. Ice sings against glasses and steam hisses as baristas in the shop craft cappuccinos, macchiatos, and smoothies, as well as tea drinks and indulgent dessert-inspired coffee frappes.
From Yogurtology’s self-serve frozen-yogurt stations, customers dispense frozen treats in fun flavors such as strawberry milkshake, red velvet cake, PB&J, chocolate macaroon, and flan. Sugar-conscious patrons can even find several flavors with no added sugars. Using their choice of fro-yo as a base, customers can create a personalized treat by combining multiple flavors or dispensing a single flavor in the shape of their monogram. The last leg of the yogurt-treat creation process happens at the toppings bar, where customers find a selection of hand-cut candy bars and fruit that is sliced throughout the day to ensure freshness.
Founded by a husband-and-wife duo, Qachbal's Chocolatier draws on family recipes to whip up cupcakes, fudge, coffee, and sweet confections fresh on-site daily. Vanilla-bean cupcakes wear a crown of vanilla buttercream icing adorned with white-chocolate embellishments, which create an alabaster dessert more appetizing than a picket fence covered in whipped cream. Each bite of a chocolate-truffle cupcake unveils rivers of its eponymous filling, protected from a downpour of sprinkles by an umbrella of rich, dark ganache. Atop every sweet treat's summit, a rich chocolate slice pokes out from a delicate dollop of buttercream icing. All orders must be made two days prior to pickup, and customers can have their cakes custom decorated for birthdays, holidays, or daylight-savings transition days upon request. Qachbal's Chocolatier delivers to the downtown Tampa area and Tampa General Hospital for an additional charge.