Posts Tagged ‘bakeries’

There is cute and then there is cute. If you’re a cupcake, you should probably be cute. Or be surrounded by zebras. Seriously. The one wall of zebras made me really want a pattern wall of some sort of animal in my bedroom. That would be awesome. That is also my reason to have children – so I can decorate their bedrooms for them except really for me. Although I could totally do this zebra thing in any other room as well.

I have a lot to catch up here on City Mitten because I just spent the past five days or so in TEXAS of all places but first I have a couple of updates to finish from when Em Bem and my mommy were in town. Which is where we get this picture:

You see, Em Bem loves cupcakes, perhaps even more than me if that’s possible. And she was dying to go to Sprinkles once she heard they were opening one on the UES. They apparently were the first cupcake-only bakery and started in Beverly Hills and are now in a bunch of major cities.

And look, you can get some for your dog! How sweet.

So we got two chocolatey ones. One with chocolate sprinkles because my mom loves those and the other one because it was cute as a button. And I also love their wooden cutterly with “Sprinkles” spelled out onto them… such good branding!

Wheee, Sprinkles is good.


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Hello, little guy! This is Cheburashka, a very popular Russian cartoon that I just found out is actually CLAYMATION after a little research on YouTube. Today is a big day for my little sister as she is heading to Russia to study and learn the language for a year! I will miss her, obviously, but I’m very excited for her as well – and also very excited to visit. She’ll be in St. Petersberg and it’s going to be GREAT.

So when I was in Michigan the weekend before last, we had a little going away party for her. And no party with my family is complete without a cake from Patisserie Parmentier. No, sir. We actually had three cakes at this party – one from Parmentier with Cheburashka and two others from Market Fresh in Southfield, Mi. Here is one of those cakes that we thought was going to be chocolate on the inside, but unfortunately was not:

But back to Cheburashka! Look how much Alexandra likes her cake:

And if you’re wondering what it looked like on the inside, here it is:

Oh, yeah. Good luck in Russia, Sambe! See you soon.


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Ice cream cookie sandwiches! Woo woo! Warning: the following post will be about ice cream too, wheee!

So the other night Kelly and I went to Milk and Cookies in the West Village. I didn’t even know this place existed. And it’s so cute! You pick out your cookies and your ice cream and viola ice cream cookie sandwich:

I’ve mentioned before that I worked at an ice cream shop in East Lansing, Mich. back in the day. We were famous for our ice cream cookie sandwiches, which we would freeze so when you took a bite the ice cream didn’t go everywhere. At Milk and Cookies since they make it in front of you, my ice cream tried to escape when I took a bite. But it was still delicious. I chose the double chocolate cookie with vanilla ice cream which is called the “penguin.” Kelly got the same thing.

Add another West Village spot to my list.

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What do you do when you take a Friday off of work and you need to go somewhere for breakfast to prepare you for a day’s worth of shopping in Soho? Balthazar, of course!

Balthazar is known for its pastries and its fanciness. Or at least that’s what it’s known for to me. It’s classic and it’s classy and rich people go there. So we did too.

Nora had the eggs Norwegian with smoked salmon.

Miss Amanda Lynn had scrambled eggs in a puff pastry with mushrooms and asparagus. So that little pastry pit at the top was soooo flakey. And I thought that was the pastry until I started to peel away at the eggs and I realized my eggs were in a pastry boat! They say pastry puff, I say pastry boat! Well I couldn’t eat nearly a third of it because there was so much pastry but it truly was delicious. Perhaps the best scrambled eggs I’ve had in my life, and I used to be ob-sessed with the scrambled eggs at the Oakland Hills Country Club in Detroit. But these are good.

I like Balthazar and next time I need to get a chocolatey something something from their pastry shop/bakery next door.

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I can’t believe I am posting about cupcakes again already, but this is what happens when you live in New York and cupcakes make up a food group on their own. It’s also what happens when you meet up with five lovely ladies for dinner at Yaffa Cafe on a Friday night and decide you want dessert afterward but don’t want to walk more than a block because it’s crazy storming outside.

So Butterlane Bakery it is!

Cupcake Love.

Girlay Love.

Nothing better than a Friday night with some of my girls. :)

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So yesterday I said that after brunch, Melissa and I went somewhere every New Yorker has an opinion about. And it’s true. Every New Yorker knows what Magnolia Bakery is, even if they don’t want to.

Magnolia Bakery is a tiny little shop in the West Village that got crazy famous after being featured on Sex and the City. It’s a huge tourist attraction and there’s usually a line formed outside the door. There’s three locations in NYC, one opening in LA and one already open in Dubai. Either you love it or you complain about it.

Which one am I?

Well. I’m not a huge fan of waiting in long lines with tourists (although I do from time to time for places like Shake Shack) and the general “OMG MAGNOLIA BAKERY OMG OMG!” drives me a bit insane, just because I think there are so many bakeries in New York that are just as good or better. My cousin Melissa thinks Magnolia cupcakes are too dry, and I’ve definitely experienced that, but I’ve gotta say the frosting is pretty dang good. So would I choose to stand in line for a half hour waiting for one? No. But I wouldn’t cry about it.

And I like that they’re organized. They only let so many people in at a time so you don’t feel like you’re headed into battle diving for that vanilla cupcake with chocolate frosting and blue sprinkles (even though one time I was there and someone did call me something that was not nice). And they’re constantly bringing more out.

Do you see that line outside? People are looking in ALL of the windows. I can not imagine working there.

So Whiney Amanda didn’t even want to go to Magnolia but look at what she got afterall (I mean I did wait in line!):

I didn’t even get a box. Just walked across the street and bam, it was gone. :)

And I would like to take this final moment to tell you the ABSOLUTE WORST cupcake in New York is Crumbs, which we’ve been over. And my favorites from the ones I’ve tried are Sugar Sweet Sunshine, which I brought over to my friends’ on Valentines Day this year, and Two Little Red Hens, which I have yet to give some well-deserved City Mitten love.

So go have a cupcake, ya’ll. It’s Tuesday.

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There are some chains I absolutely cannot get behind. Actually, that would be most chains, so let me start over. There are some cupcakes I absolutely cannot get behind. And this one happens to be a chain. Coincidence? I think not.

Crumbs Bake Shop. Perhaps the most popular cupcake stop in New York, perhaps only due to sheer volume of stores. Seriously there is an effing Crumbs on every corner. They put one a block from my office last year. So it’s the most convenient. But sadly, not the most delicious.

The cupcakes are huge, and I’m sure that’s part of the draw. I remember my first time in, I got a giant Oreo cupcake and was extremely underwhelmed. The cake part was eh and the frosting was actually kind of hard. No thanks. People rave about these cupcakes and I try my best to hold my tongue, cause what’s the point in being bitchy about a cupcake?

Last week at my office’s holiday party, one of my co-workers brought in Crumbs and they were actually quite good. I tried the vanilla cake with chocolate frosting and thought maybe they got it right. Maybe Crumbs is actually good.

But then today, my friend surprised me with one of their brownie cupcakes. I was very excited to try my treat, but when I got home, again Crumbs was a disappointment:

It just doesn’t taste like anything. It even had frosting in the middle and that did nothing for me. Oh, Crumbs, why does everyone love you?

I don’t get it.

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Yesterday was a fabulous Saturday in Brooklyn. Woke up at 8 a.m. (yes, on a Saturday) and went running for the first time in WEEKS with a brand new playlist, followed by a trip to the Brooklyn Public Library and the farmer’s market. Now I have endless amounts of peaches, plums, raspberries and blueberries as well as subway reading material for the week. Per-fect.

Later in the day I met up with my friend Lucy, who always knows what’s going on in the city when it comes to music. We went to the Park Slope Bluegrass and Oldtime Jamboree at the Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture. WTF is a Society for Ethical Culture? I have no idea. But we went there. There were a lot of older people, at least 75% of the hair in the room was white or missing completely. We felt like we had been momentarily transported to Vermont or somewhere, we definitely did not feel like we were still in New York. Some of these people had Southern accents and most of them lacked any sense of style. BUT they played some amazing Bluegrass. I am always awed by any musical abilities and some of these people with their instruments (not to mention voices) really impressed me. This one lady looked like she was 70 years old, played bluegrass bass and sang it out. If only my grandma could do that! (For the record my grandma owns an accordion, so maybe that means something.)

When we first got there, they had sold out of food so we walked two blocks to Sweet Melissa, a bakery on 7th avenue that I’ve heard of and walked by many times but never actually gotten anything from.

Well. I ordered their chicken potpie and it did NOT disappoint. I have no idea the last time when I actually had chicken pot pie was, but it’s been so blah and rainy outside, so a nice, warm, crisp chicken potpie is just what the doctor ordered.


Will you just look at that pot pie? The color is off because the lighting in the restaurant was not conducive to my photography skills, as is so often the case. But look! It is basically one giant crust that sits on top of a bowl of chicken stew. And the crust was so flaky and easy to break off into pieces, I really don’t think I have ever had better pot pie. It was comparable to the chicken stew they served at the Michigan State University cafeteria. I’m not even kidding, that was some good stuff! But it did not, of course, have that fancy crust.

Anyway, after my pot pie (and Lucy’s salad – she always gets salad!) we ordered a dessert. We got the warm flourless molten chocolate cake instead, basically, my five favorite words right there.


It was pretty good. My only complaints would be the wrapping was annoying to get around and I think I needed a glass of milk or a spoonful of vanilla ice cream to top it off. And perhaps a little more molten wouldn’t hurt. The next time I’m there I may try one of these cupcakes:


ANYWAY. This was supposed to be a post about Bluegrass. I like it. I also like that there are things called Pickin’ Tents where everyone brings their instrument, comes and goes as they please and jam along with whoever. Throughout the night we would go outside and check out the impromtu bluegrass band under the tent. My favorite is when everyone was singing along, people’s voices always surprise me.


A lot of the songs were about West Virginia. One of them I even knew from when I was like ten and would play this Carmen San Diego computer game all the time. Now that was a good game.

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