Archive for January, 2012

Sugar Bakery

January 16, 2012

The Sugar Bakery is one of those places I’ve driven by dozens of times but never had the chance to go to, mainly because of it’s hours (Monday-Friday 7-6, Saturday 9-1) and location (First Hill). Great if you’re working in the area, not so much if you’re not.  But when my yoga class this week was cancelled, I decided to restore and replenish my body through scones and cupcakes. Upon arriving at Sugar, I was immediately excited by their “bread of the day” board:

The sandwiches are made with their own foccacia, and I would have happily gobbled one down (they looked delicious), but I decided to be extra decadent and order a raspberry scone and red velvet cupcake (my breakfast and lunch, respectively).

I found the scone to be a little too close to a biscuit (not that there’s anything wrong with biscuits), and would rather have tried the cinnamon brioche (a good reason to find time to return!).  The cupcake, however, was superb.  Hidden inside of it’s red velvety goodness was a little ball of chocolate truffle, which gave this little beauty some serious oomph. I also appreciated the frosting, which was cream cheese rather than buttercream, and not overly sweet. Speaking of overly sweet, if you’re planning on spending any amount of time here, you’d better like pink…

The decor didn’t bother me (I have a pink laptop, pink ipod, and used to have pink hair), but guys might find it intimidating. Just sayin’…

PS. They also have a nice variety of gluten-free, for those so inclined.



A Piece of Cake

January 9, 2012

I stumbled upon A Piece of Cake after eating a lovely Chinese dinner at The Red Lantern in the International District. Despite it’s extensive neon signage, it’s overshadowed in reputation by Fuji Bakery (a half a block away). Still, I thought I’d give it a shot – it just looked so bright and welcoming on such a dark winter day.

The bakery basically has two sections: traditional Chinese buns (pork bun, coconut bun, red bean pastries, etc) and more western-style desserts that range from traditional chocolate cake to honeydew melon cake. I chose a couple from each side, starting with a mango mousse and green tea cake:

Green tea in desserts is an acquired taste, and I thought I had acquired it. But I had trouble enjoying the green tea flavor alongside the mango. I think I would have liked it better if the cake just had ONE strong flavor, and if it had a little more flour (I often find Asian-style cakes to be much too airy). I then tried a coconut-filled bun. The bread was perfect – eggy, with that lovely cotton candy texture you get in Challah bread. The coconut filling, however, was a little too heavy. I could only finish about half the bun (granted, it was pretty big). I saved my final choice, the Lotus Pastry, for the next day:

The girl at the counter asked if I’d ever had lotus before, I admitted I had not. She hinted that it was another acquired taste, and wondered if I would like it. I told her there were very few desserts I wouldn’t like, and that I wanted to try a traditional Chinese pastry. I probably should have listened to her though, because I found the lotus filling (made from lotus seeds) to be dry and oddly flavored. Or, perhaps I just need to work harder to acquire the taste?