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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Treats and technology collide at coffee house

    Savannah Douglas
    Savannah Douglas / Daily Wildcat Just Desserts & Coffee House, featuring a six foot chocolate fountain at the entry way, offers a relaxed atmosphere with an interactive table menu. All desserts are baked in the cafe and fresh coffee is always available.

    Just Desserts & Coffee House is where you can get a five-star dessert without having to pay for the three-course meal.

    The new coffeehouse located at Broadway Boulevard and Craycroft Road offers a menu of dessert-only items ranging from classic funnel cakes to more fanciful chocolate éclairs. The various sweet treats offered come with the added promise of being baked on-site and only with the freshest of ingredients.

    “There’s no microwave in our kitchen,” said Linda Collins, the co-owner of Just Desserts. After spending years in the computer business, Collins decided to open a desserts-only restaurant back in 2011. Finally opening to the public this past month, Collins said it was a difficult, time-consuming process putting together all of Just Desserts’ unique aspects.

    The presence of giant touch-screen tabletops is one quirky innovation that makes this sit-down sweet spot so appealing. This futuristic furniture includes built-in games for patrons to unleash their sugar overload that comes with eating a piece of chocolate mousse cake.

    These “SmartTables,” as some of the customers have begun calling them, allow a quick game of Memory, Quizmaster and Skee-Ball while you wait for your dessert. Collins added that eventually customers will be able to submit their orders through the electronic tables, which is a software development entirely original to Just Desserts.

    These high-tech tables do strangely contrast the restaurant’s homestyle custom of serving drinks out of glass jelly jars. The hand-painted murals of chemical compounds, which hang from the restaurant’s walls, also offer an added scientifi component to Just Desserts’ peculiar décor.

    “I really like the atmosphere and design of the place,” said Dawn Thibodeau, a customer who enjoyed a piece of the pineapple upside-down cake.

    Prices on the menu range from $5 to $7, including the restaurant’s most popular dessert, homemade apple pie. Made using two types of apples, this American classic goes great with a scoop of Just Desserts’ five different ice cream flavors.

    Perhaps one reason why this restaurant’s desserts taste like they’re from home is because they’re made in a business that is a complete family affair. Collins co-owns the place with her daughter, Corinne Angello, who is also the head chef. Collins’ husband also helped to develop the technology for the restaurant’s signature “SmartTables.”

    “The place came out exactly the way we wanted,” said Collins, who has been living in Tucson with her family for the last nine years.

    For customers trying to watch their waistlines, Just Desserts also has a full espresso bar with a variety of hot and cold beverages that don’t have any added sweeteners. The weight watchers may want to at least treat themselves to the indulgent “Sipping Caramel” specialty drink, as it feels like an eruption of butterscotch goodness swirling over your tongue.

    Even though Just Desserts just opened this month, Collins said that her family hopes to open another location somewhere in Oro Valley within the next three years.

    Follow Kevin Reagan @KevinReaganUA

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