FLORIDA KEYS — The Florida Keys are famed as the home of Key lime pie, but savoring the creamy dessert isn’t the only way to indulge a sweet tooth in the island chain. Travelers in the Upper Keys can stop at several spots along the Overseas Highway to find sweet treats with an island flair.
For example, the Keys’ premier chocolate factory can be found at mile marker 100.5 bayside. Keys Chocolates & Ice Cream infuses local flavors into handmade chocolate confections such as luscious truffles, fudge and specialty chocolate bark with Key lime and pistachios.
If a stop at that yummy spot triggers cravings for a second helping, the born-in-the-Keys company now has another location at mile marker 81.9 in Islamorada. Visitors to that shop can choose from specialties such as ice cream, artisan chocolates, Key lime pretzels and pie on a stick.
Speaking of Key lime pie, savvy dessert fans might know that the confection, created in Key West in the late 1800s, was voted Florida’s official pie in 2006 by the state legislature (honest!). But at Bob’s Bunz, a friendly Islamorada “comfort food” restaurant and bakery located at mile marker 81.6, the tiny limes play a starring role in other sweet temptations including Bundt cakes and bite-size cookies.
No trip to the Upper Keys is complete without visiting Bob’s, whose name comes from the legendary (and absolutely gigantic) cinnamon and sticky buns created by owner Robert “Bob” Spencer. The “bunz” can be purchased at the restaurant/bakery for a takeaway treat — and lime lovers are advised not to leave without a Bundt cake or cookies as well.
Looking for some great coffee to complement those Keys taste sensations? Islamorada Coffee Roasters, known in the Upper Keys for its roving coffee van with air-roasted organic coffee, has a new retail location at 80925 Overseas Highway, just south of the Morada Way Arts District. The roaster features 100% Arabica organic coffee drinks brewed to patrons’ specifications.
Other offerings include coffee-scented soy candles, Pirate Hat exfoliating soap made with ground coffee, and house-made masala chai and hot cocoa — plus snacks including scones, Key lime macaroons, coffee brownies and cinnamon streusel cake.
The roaster also features the custom I.CARE Blend, a mix of small-batch beans from dive destinations Bali, Costa Rica and Honduras. For each $25 1-pound bag of I.CARE Blend beans sold, $10 is donated to the nonprofit I.CARE for coral restoration efforts in Islamorada.
And that might be the sweetest thing of all.
The Keys’ premier chocolate factory can be found at Keys Chocolates and Ice Cream, mile marker 100.5 bayside. It's exterior sports the original moniker, Key Largo Chocolates.
No trip to the Upper Keys is complete without visiting Bob’s Bunz, whose name comes from the legendary (and absolutely gigantic) cinnamon and sticky buns created by owner Robert 'Bob' Spencer. Image: Bob's Bunz
Islamorada Coffee Roasters features 100 percent Arabica organic coffee drinks brewed to patrons’ specifications. Image: Stay Adventurous