About a year ago, Myles and Payton Tatum and Jamie and
Maggie Cooper dined in downtown Opelika and discussed their wish for an ice cream place within walking distance.
“We laughed and said we ought to open something,” says Maggie. “Then a few months later we decided we might really do it! We began to pray about it, and doors opened for it to happen. We love the downtown area because it feels like home, and we want to be a part of its growth.”
The Railroad Creamery has a 1950s, ice cream-parlor feel with white and chrome retro tables, and retro polka dot window treatments in lime green, pink and black colors. A variety of
black and white pictures of the depot, railroads as well as photos of old Opelika decorate walls.
Blue Bell ice cream with homemade waffle cones and bowls, milkshakes, sundaes and other dessert treats are offered. Along with various homemade desserts, hot fudge brownie sundaes and banana splits are presented for a yummy treat.
The owners have small children and see their business as
a relaxing, fun place for families to come for a treat and for holding birthday parties.
Railroad Creamery is located at 119B S. 8th Street in downtown Opelika.
Chill Yogurt Café
When Dena Malugen’s husband worked in California a few years ago, he could not stop talking about the emerging self-serve frozen yogurt industry. “His enthusiasm for the concept of delicious, healthy and fun yogurt piqued not only my interest,” says Dena, “but that of my parents and brothers as well — thus a new family business was born.”
Almost immediately they settled on the name Chill. “We viewed it as the perfect name for grabbing a frozen treat in a relaxing and happy atmosphere.”
The Chill Yogurt Cafés in Tiger Town and Auburn offer a selection of 24 — 36 flavors of frozen yogurt including no fat, low fat and/or no sugar-added options, and custard prepared with eggs and sorbet, which is dairy free. Customers can top their choice with either fresh fruit or a variety of chocolates, candies, nuts or syrups — a total of up to 90 different toppings.
For customers who prefer their toppings mixed in their yogurt rather than sprinkled on top, they can opt for the Chill Twist, which is similar to a blizzard-type treat. Smoothies and gourmet coffee are also offered.
After opening, Dena searched for a complementary product to offer. One of Dena’s close high school friends and her two daughters agreed to help develop recipes. Since they had a difficult time reconciling regular cupcakes with healthier yogurt options, they combined the two to create yocakes!
Their yogurt base is an ingredient in the batter and icing to create 32 flavors of yocakes. Up to 24 flavors are baked fresh daily by in-house bakers. They are offered in regular and mini sizes. Yocakes can also be ordered for special events.
A cup or waffle cone is available for customers to select their own soft yogurt and toppings to truly have their treat their way.
Chill is located in Tiger Town and at 234 W. Magnolia Ave. in Auburn.
Housed in a late-1800s building in downtown Opelika, the Overall Co. was once an overall garment manufacturing facility with retail and executive offices. The building was renovated this spring for a unique shop featuring specialty coffee, a gourmet popsicle bar and desserts.
Overall Co. is the collective vision of Ali Maloney, Laura Pritchard and Jay Pritchard. Ali enjoyed baking special hand-crafted treats, while the Pritchards had dreamed of owning their own coffee shop for years.
“Our pops are special because most of them are 100 percent natural,” says Ali, “the only exceptions are some of our cream-based pops. We have decided to provide pops with certain items such as vanilla wafers and Oreos within the mix to create flavors such as cookies and cream or banana pudding.”
The pops are inspired by Mexican ice pops called paletas. Select from flavors made with hand-cut and puréed fresh fruits combined with seasonings to create a refreshing treat. Some blends include raspberry lemonade, mango mojito, orange pineapple banana and watermelon mint, among others.
Cream-based pops are reminiscent of favorite desserts, such as key lime pie and strawberry shortcake, or you can try Mexican chocolate and salted caramel flavors. Pops can be customized by dipping in handmade chocolate sauce that turns into a hard shell.
“Our traditional, hand-crafted coffees are the direct result of Counter Culture’s close relationships with artisan farmers,” says Laura. “Our baristas have been trained in several specialty brewing methods such as chemex and manual pour over drip method.” Traditional espresso drinks are also available.
While the shop focuses on coffee and pops, desserts,
teas, breakfast and lunch items are also offered, along with a market for cheeses and meats available either in the café or
Pops are also available for birthday parties, weddings and other events.
The Overall Co. is located at the corner of 10th Street and Ave. B.
The Cheesecake Cottage
With original hardwood floors from the late 1800s, wide molding and a dazzling wrought-iron chandelier, The Cheesecake Cottage in downtown Opelika offers attractive ambiance for savoring a scrumptious dessert.
Owner Tara Sanders began making cheesecakes about
10 years ago. When she took her cheesecakes to school or church events, everyone raved over them, telling her she should sell them.
Last year Tara and husband Eric opened the sweet shop, offering over 60 varieties of the rich, creamy cheesecakes
and other desserts, including cheesecake cookies, cupcakes and brownies.
Among the varieties of luscious flavors are almond joy, chocolate-covered strawberry, key lime, cookies and cream, chocolate lovers, carrot cake, turtle, low-carb strawberry almond, banana pudding, among others. On a daily basis, five to 10 cheesecakes are offered by the slice.
During summer frozen cheesecake on a stick is dipped in chocolate and rolled in pecans or sprinkles.
A favorite for children is a small cheesecake cup, which can be topped with M&M’s or chopped Oreos.
The Cottage also offers an assortment of desserts to order.
The Cheesecake Cottage is located at 109 South Eighth Street in downtown Opelika.
The idea for Gigi’s cupcakes formed when her brother called from New York City after standing in line two hours for a red velvet cupcake. He called his sister to tell her she should open a cupcake shop since her cakes were much better.
The first shop opened in Nashville, and then franchised to other locations. Patrick and Jennifer Cooper own the two Gigi’s Cupcakes in Auburn. The Auburn graduates wanted to return to Auburn to live with their son.
The newest location in downtown Auburn has paired with Toomer’s coffee. This location opens at 8 a.m. for those desiring a cup of coffee downtown. It will also remain open later for those desiring a luscious cupcake after dinner.
In addition to the regular menu, they offer specials each day. With more than 200 flavor combinations to draw from, 11 cupcakes and specials are also available daily. They list cupcakes daily on their Facebook page, Gigi’s Cupcakes of Auburn.
Among the special flavors for summer are Banana Cream Pie, Chocolate Cream Pie, Key Lime, Lemon Dream Supreme, Southern Comfort, Caramel Sugar Mama and many others.
Gigi’s Cupcakes in Auburn are located at 1888 Ogletree Rd.
Suite 170 and 132 North College Street.
Shake’s Frozen Custard
At Shake’s Frozen Custard every item is prepared fresh.
The frozen chocolate and vanilla custard is prepared
nearly every hour. From these two flavors fresh fruit or
selections from over 30 toppings are blended to create a fresh, decadent taste.
Several classic sundaes are richly topped. The ShakesBopper
contains frozen custard topped with caramel, hot fudge, roasted, salted pecans and cherries.
The Shake’s Concrete is a blend of frozen custard with a topping choice, such as cookie dough, brownie or from dozens of other selections.
Numerous other treats are available, including “cows”
Ice cream cakes can be ordered ahead and can be
Shake’s are located at 2415 Moore’s Mill Road suite 130 in the Publix Shopping Center in Auburn and the Publix Shopping Center on University Drive in Auburn.