Tropical Ice Cream Cafe has been serving up scoops of frozen delight for the past 25 years. The shop strives to serve the diverse population of the Washington Metropolitan Area, offering up a large menu of homemade ice-cream concoctions laden with exotic fruits. A tropical fruit catalogue is even available for customers who may think a soursop is a highly absorbent towel sold on the television. Sample previously unknown ice-cream flavors such as guava, mangoberry, lychee, and papaya, or premium traditional flavors that run the gamut from mint chocolate chip and rum raisin to apple pie and Guinness. All ice cream is made with the freshest ingredients available.
Every day, Rita's serves up fresh, fruitified Italian ice ($2.39 for a regular) in more than 30 flavors, with sugar-free, fat-free, cholesterol-free, and trans-fat-free ices available. Achieve Ty Cobb–like levels of coolness with the Georgia peach ice, get caught in the rain of the refreshing piña colada, or visit the Sunshine State without leaving the comforts of your bomb shelter with the Florida orange. Other flavors include strawberry, root beer, Swedish Fish, chocolate chocolate chip, vanilla, key lime, the unearthly RitaBerrious (formerly Mystery Ice), and even a Peeps flavor. All ices are served within 36 hours of mixing, ensuring that Rita's customers are getting drinks as pure as the driven Technicolor snow.
Run by an ex-dentist who turned to sweets, Larry's Cookies doctors up delectable, homemade baked delights that fill teeth with joy. The cookie shop works with a special gourmet cookie compound to create cookies that are free of trans fats and hydrogenated oils. Cookie monsters from all over can enjoy a baker's dozen of crispy and chewy Heath Bar cookies, snack on chunky, buttery white-chocolate Oreo cookies, or choose the classic chocolate-chip option ($23 each). Fans of brownies and bars can stock up on tasty building blocks for their bellies by ordering a dozen raspberry preserve-infused cream-cheese brownies or caffeinated espresso brownies ($28 each). Larry's biscotti ($28 for a box of 16) come in four varieties and are handmade, butter-free, and won't drown if you dunk them in coffee and tea.
Though they sound like names for Paul Bunyan's fists, redwood and burlap are two of the key components for crafting bagels at Ize's Deli & Bagelry. When Angie and Lee Greenberg move their bagels from a broiling kettle to a stone oven, the two materials work to form a pleasantly crispy bagel exterior. Angie and Lee also prepare handmade spreads and cream cheeses to schmear their doughy creations in flavors like strawberry and scallion. This process is a family endeavor—Angie's parents assist in the kitchen to ensure that all bagels are prepared in small, fresh batches.
Guests seated in the cozy dining area reap the benefits of the Greenbergs' lunch and breakfast labors. In addition to their New York–style bagels, the owners serve up omelets, knishes, soups, and deli sandwiches stacked with savory meats. On some of the sandwiches, they swap bread for the venue's namesake: the Empire, for example, features layers of hot roast beef, cheddar, and horseradish mayonnaise on an onion bagel.
Though the staff delights in passing out meals to their countertop customers, they also arrange artful platters for catered events. The gourmet smoked-fish platter nestles lox, whitefish, and tuna salad amid lettuce and imported cheeses, and party servings of bagels and subs accommodate feasting groups.
The dedication to sating sweet cravings with healthy yet decadent treats drives Serenberry Frozen Yogurt’s staff to serve cups of tangy frozen yogurt dappled with fresh toppings or blended into rich smoothies. Mixed up daily in-house, each batch of the kosher yogurt contains live probiotic cultures that can bolster health and wellness. Every dulcet flavor—from original tart to dark chocolate—boasts a low fat content to keep silhouettes sleek and help eaters meet their goal of fitting back into their high school lockers.