Archive for the ‘West Seattle’ Category

Salty’s

June 4, 2012

I usually avoid blogging about restaurant desserts because I like to focus on places where dessert is what they do.  However, when a restaurant devotes a whole room of their all-you-can-eat buffet to the sweet stuff, I have to be flexible.

Yes, we’re talking about Salty’s on Alki, and if you haven’t done their brunch, put that on your Seattle bucket list. It’s expensive, but worth it if you and your loved ones can eat as much as me and mine.  I limited myself to a single plate (this was after my single plate of breakfast foods, and then my single plate of shellfish – try resisting all-you-can-eat Dungeness Crab), pictured below:

Clockwise from the top left, that’s Red Velvet Cupcake, Carrot Cake Cupcake, Sticky Bun, Oreo Cake, and Cheesecake. My favorites were the cheesecake (for cream cheesy tang) and the red velvet cake (again, for the cream cheesy tang in the frosting).  My sister allowed herself an extra trip to the chocolate fountain:

She tried various fruits (frozen banana, anyone), but the chocolate took a while to harden and everything ended up getting stuck to the plate! Probably for the best, considering this was only our first meal of the day.

 

Shoofly Pie

May 23, 2011

West Seattle is such a great little corner of the world if you’re a dessert hunter like I am. There are so many quality choices that even though I live in Capitol Hill, I find myself up on California Ave quite often, looking for that special something. A recent expedition brought me to Shoofly Pie, a small, colorful cafe and pie shop.

It’s a great spot to hang out, take tea, and dig into your sweet or savory pie.  In fact, I highly recommend the latter (I had the chicken pot pie) if it’s a rainy day (which it usually is) and you’re in need of some serious comfort food. When you’ve finished with that, move on to dessert:

Everything they have is handmade from scratch – no bland factory/frozen pie taste here! Everything is fruity flaky goodness with seasonal changes in the menu. You can also buy Old School’s vanilla frozen custard to take home, so that you can eat your warmed-up pie a la mode, as I did:

This was a slice of the strawberry-rhubarb pie, which, according to their website, was how everything started. But if that’s too nutritious for you, order the shoofly pie, which is a traditional American dessert involving pie crust and molasses (that’s what I’m going to try next time… I can’t say no to a dessert that’s mostly butter and sugar).

Bakery Nouveau

February 7, 2011

I’d heard so many good things about Bakery Nouveau, and would have visited it sooner if I’d been able to spell it correctly in a Google search. I have to admit, I was a little intimidated by it’s reputation as one of Seattle’s best bakeries (not to mention the plethora of vowels in the name), and when I got there I was quickly overwhelmed by the choices and the crowds of people.

It’s not easy to choose carefully when there are so many delicious-looking items and a long line waiting behind you!  I wanted lunch, so I got a piece of pesto pizza, plus a slice of German Chocolate Cake (pictured below). As an afterthought I got a chocolate croissant for the next morning. The pizza was super-salty but also super-good. The crust is a lot less doughy than traditional pizza crust, and the pesto was top-notch. The cake, on the other hand, did not excite me:

Everything about it was fine, but not spectacular. Later (after reading some reviews) I realized I should have tried the classic chocolate cake instead, since the ganache is apparently to-die-for.  However, I did luck out with the chocolate croissant:

In the rush of getting ready for work the next morning, I almost forgot about it, but remember in time to heat it up and chow down. After one bite, I knew I’d found my new favorite croissant place (remind me to do a taste-test someday against Besalu). It was perfect and I’d drive over to West Seattle any day just for the pleasure of eating one of these.

Quick tip: If you visit on the weekend, plan on getting your food to-go… it’s pretty hard to get a table.

 

The Sugar Rush Bakery

May 10, 2010

This West Seattle spot wins for longest store name – technically it’s “Coffee to a Tea – Home of the Sugar Rush Bakery” but I’ll just refer to it as Sugar Rush.  Located amidst a cluster of other well-regarded bakeries (Bakery Nouveau and Shoofly Pie are both right down the street), Sugar Rush still manages to stand out in the crowd with fancy, custom-made cakes – or their more user-friendly cupcakes.  Plus, it’s called Called Coffee to a Tea for a reason: they brew a great cup of coffee and offer five different “levels” of tea service, including traditional high tea or a children’s tea hour.


The free wifi, wide windows, and spacious interior make for an inviting spot to work, chat, people-watch, or read. Plus, there’s a play area for kids and a room available for rent for birthdays and such.


What they’re best-known for, however, are their mini-cupcakes – a bite-size piece of heaven. When I saw that their website promised that “our mini-cupcakes can fill your sweet tooth craving quickly,” I knew that’s just what I needed. However, upon looking at the huge variety of flavors, I found I couldn’t choose just one, or three, or even six. That’s why I love their offer of a dozen – packed neatly in an egg carton.

The picture doesn’t do it justice: I was so excited that I was actually hopping up and down while she was loading up the carton. And although the dozen is obviously meant to be shared, I ate almost the whole thing myself. After all, I had to try each of the flavors… and just cuz it was so delicious. Even though most of the frostings were buttercream (not my favorite) I was still mightily impressed. My favorites: the “Classic” (made with ganache frosting), the German Chocolate, the Red Velvet, and, surprisingly, the Orange.  And just in case this blog isn’t enough to make you want to go try some for yourself, there’s one more reason – go to the website and download the free coupon for one mini cupcake!

Cupcake Royale

December 20, 2009

Who makes the best cupcake in Seattle? The battle between Trophy Cupcakes and Cupcake Royale is a heated one, but I’m happy to withhold judgment and keep doing taste tests forever.

Cupcake Royale, with locations in Cap Hill, Ballard, Madrona, and West Seattle, is great for everything from coffee-cupcake dates (they serve Verite coffee) to late-night cravings (the Cap Hill and Ballard locations are open most nights till 11:00). The real question is… which flavor? There are many to choose from, including classics like vanilla-chocolate and red velvet, original creations like lavender, or seasonal creations (the December ones included Figgy Pudding and Eggnog. As usual, I took my sweet time (no pun intended) to choose.


Since I’m not a big fan of holiday desserts like eggnog and peppermint, I avoided the seasonal selections and opted, randomly, for the carrot cake – I was enticed by the cream cheese frosting and wanted to avoid the buttercream concoctions. My second choice was easy – I love ganache frosting so I chose the vanilla cake – chocolate frosting.


Perhaps because I chose the cupcakes that were particularly suited to my tastes, they received mixed reviews from everyone but me. My friends liked the carrot cake for its rich taste and moist texture, but not so much the cream cheese frosting (which I loved).  They were disappointed by the vanilla-chocolate cupcake, complaining that the cake part was too bland. I realized, too late, that I should not have shared… to me, the vanilla cake was the perfect foil for the rich, fudgy ganache frosting – exactly the way it should be!

West 5

July 6, 2009

It’s not a bakery but… I went to dinner at West 5 the other day and had to quickly blog about the dessert I had after dinner. West 5 is an excellent diner/bar in West Seattle, an area that I’m trying to explore a little more as I break out of my Capitol Hill habit:

w5 exterior

The dessert selection is limited, but I decided to try something anyway (as if the mac & cheese I had for dinner wasn’t enough!). The waitress recommended their coconut cake – homemade using a recipe that had been handed down through multiple generations. Of course I had to get it – I can never pass up a homemade cake, especially one that involves coconut.

coconut cake

The cake was waaaay too big for one person (even me!), and even with two of us eating I had to take some home. The texture of the cake was a little doughy for me, but I liked the nutty flavor. The icing was perfect – thick, sweet, and coconutty.

If you’re in need of some down-home cooking and some extra calories, stop by West 5 and have a taste. The drinks are pretty good too!

West 5
4539 California Ave SW