The Maple Tree Café

A few months ago, the breakfast nook at the original Maple Tree on Spring Mountain Road received a makeover, thanks to Food Network’s Restaurant: Impossible. Good thing they didn’t mess with the breakfast menu, a concise yet hearty listing that features all you could possibly want out of the first meal of the day. Think country-fried steak with seasoned sausage gravy made in-house. And giant red-velvet pancakes (there’s a gluten-free option) with pecans and cream-cheese frosting. And brunch favorites such as a Monte Cristo with maple sauce. Lest you forget this is a true mom-and-pop operation, signature apple fritters are made from a family recipe: a fluffy doughnut topped with a thick, sweet glaze of cooked apples, cinnamon and sugar. The makeover seems to have done its job—they recently opened two 24-hour locations in the Valley.

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Cocktail Culture


By Xania V. Woodman

Following the kitchen’s lead, Fox Restaurant Concepts beverage manager Mat Snapp is committed to using house-made syrups and infusions at Culinary Dropout wherever possible. “Everything tastes better when you put time, effort and energy into it,” Snapp says. His original creation, Bells & Whistles, actually had its beginnings in the kitchen, at a barbecue festival’s cocktail competition. “I wanted a cocktail that mirrored all the great things about barbecue: some smokiness, some sweetness and some heat.” Simple syrup infused with charred bell pepper and jalapeño does the trick nicely.