Archive for the 'Bakery' Category

San Francisco Sweets: Morning Buns, Russian Honey Cakes, Egg Tarts, Doughnuts and more!

Bi-Rite Creamery - Mission - San Francisco

The Astronomer and I traveled to San Francisco back in October for the super-sweet nuptials of two friends (with a side of super-sweet treats).

We don’t always have time for serious gastronomic endeavors when we head north, especially with so many friends and family to see, but we somehow manage to fit in desserts. Lots of desserts. Priorities, priorities.

Tartine Bakery & Cafe - San Francisco

After years of pining for Tartine‘s famed morning bun, I finally got my paws on one. Dusted with cinnamon and sugar, imbued with candied orange, and most importantly, perfectly flaky and buttery, the bun was as lovely as hoped.

Tartine Bakery & Cafe - San Francisco

We also indulged in a slice of cake (before noon!) along with our morning bun because that’s what vacations are for. Our choice pick featured lime-moistened genoise cake with passion fruit Bavarian cream, topped with sweetened cream and coconut. Mmm…cake for breakfast—that’s how we do.

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b.Patisserie – San Francisco

B. Patisserie - San Francisco

Before bidding San Francisco farewell, I made one final stop at pastry palace b.Patisserie.

Opened in 2013, this adorable bakery specializing in “modern French style pastries along with American flavors and local influences” is a mecca for the sweets-obsessed. If you’ve got a penchant for perfectly crafted pastries, this spot is most definitely for you.

B. Patisserie - San Francisco

The brilliant baker behind b. is Belinda Leong. She began her career as a pastry chef at San Francisco’s Restaurant Gary Danko for eight years, followed by two years of staging in Europe. When she returned to the Bay Area, she served as the pastry chef at Los Gatos’ Manresa Restaurant, before striking out on her own with partner and fellow baker Michel Suas to open b.

B. Patisserie - San Francisco

From the eye-poppingly beautiful display, I managed to whittle my wants to three delights.

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Craftsman and Wolves – San Francisco

Craftsman and Wolves - San Francisco

In the midst of last week’s intense heat wave, I escaped to cooler points north thanks to a timely work-related trip. As soon as I landed in San Francisco, sunny and 70 degrees, I hopped BART to my hotel, dropped off my baggage, and made a beeline for Craftsman and Wolves to indulge in avant-garde pastries (served with a side of gentrification).

The bakery’s unusual name is a nod to artisans and the “numerous challenges that one faces when pursuing their craft,” according to the website. Craftsman and Wolves’ proprietor, William Werner, was previously the pastry chef at Quince.

Craftsman and Wolves - San Francisco

The bakery offers an ever-changing selection of breakfast pastries, cakes, confections, confitures, desserts, and savory lunchtime fare.

The best-seller, The Rebel Within (front center), is a savory Asiago and Parmesan cheese muffin flecked with breakfast sausage, black pepper, and chives and filled with an oozy-yolked poached egg.

Craftsman and Wolves - San Francisco

Not in the mood for a runny yolk this afternoon, I started with a “Savory Tart” topped with tangy fromage blanc, snappy brined beets and turnips, and toasted pistachios ($5.50). My only complaint was that the flaky base was a bit difficult to cut through using the provided butter knife. Otherwise, this pastry was as good as expected.

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Portland Odds & Sods: Pine State Biscuits, Olympic Provisions, Le Pigeon, Nuvrei, Tasty n Alder

White Stag Sign - Portland

With just 40 hours in Portland, my girlfriends and I managed to cram in 10 solid dining destinations without a hitch. From Friday evening to Sunday afternoon, we filled our drizzly days with savories, sweets, and seemingly everything in between. Not to mention lots of walking to balance everything all out, or so we hoped.

While BakeshopBlue StarPok PokNong’s Khao Man Gai, and Salt & Straw delighted me most this trip, these five spots had their charms as well: Pine State Biscuits, Olympic Provisions, Le Pigeon, Nuvrei, and Tasty n Alder. The best of the rest—PDX style:

Pine State Biscuits

Pine State Biscuits - Portland State University Farmers' Market - Portland

Pine State Biscuits launched their kitchen at the Portland Farmers Market in 2006. Even with a  brick and mortar location on Belmont Avenue, which opened in 2008, the trio behind the operation continues to lug their stoves to the farmers market each Saturday to feed the hoards of hungry fans.

Pine State Biscuits - Portland State University Farmers' Market - Portland

We dug into “The Reggie,” a fried chicken, bacon, and cheese situation, topped with a whole lot of gravy.

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