Thursday, August 21, 2014

THE PASTRY CUPBOARD...SWEETS WEEK (OR TWO) SUGAR CRASHES TO AN END

A man walks into a bakery and....that's not exactly the start of a joke but more like me 2 or three days a week. Bakeries are like bars to me--I won't usually pass one by without going in to try something. And no people I DO NOT HAVE A PROBLEM! I just like baked goods but they gotta actually be good if I'm gonna walk back through those bakery doors again. Usually one good cookie will do that for me and while some folks search this town for the perfect burrito or best burger I'm on the lookout for the exceptional cookie or the lushest cupcake. It's that search which brought me to my latest foray The Pasty Cupboard.

Located on a busy Market Street stretch at the corner of Franklin, it's one of those places that has been there awhile now and I've said "I really need to try them". Thus on one of my wander days I found myself on the fringes of Hayes Valley in need of a sugar pick me up and popped in to purvey their offerings. The space is kind of long and narrow and even though they list themselves as a cafe there aren't that many places to sit inside (there are some tables outside) but it is also getting the late day sun directly on all but one small corner and it is quite toasty. That one small corner has someone already sitting in one of the counter seats so I put my coat on the back of the other chair and take a look at the goods on display. 


There are still a few things left to try and as per my m.o. I zero in on the chocolate chip cookie and in the refrigerated (?) case around to the side I spy a red velvet cupcake and well, why not. 


The cookie was appropriately crisp around the edges segueing into a soft middle. There was a very good amount of still gooey chocolate throughout the majority of the cookie, though it could have been soft and gooey because of how warm it was inside. But I'll count that as a bonus either way. My one thing--it was a tad on the too sweet side for a cookie. For me it could have used a nice sprinkle of salt, sea salt, whatever to help that a little. For $2.35 though, it was a pretty large size and decent enough that I'd try it again.  

The cupcake was served cold which I found odd though I'm going to chalk it up to the fact that the icing was made of cream, not the standard cream cheese. Problem with that though was the icing was rock hard and well, not good. Plus, weirdly enough, right underneath the swirl of icing was just a dollop of cream cheese--to hold the icing on? It was just a total mess and so very unlike me--I scraped the icing off--I kid you not. I'm guessing they were trying to do something different, so (very) small props for that, but it still needs to be good. As for the cake part, I actually kind of liked it. It was an actual chocolate cake with red food coloring--like it should be on a red velvet. The flavor was there and as the SO and I have found when we make a red velvet cake at home, refrigerating it brings out a great flavor and texture than you get with one at room temperature, while still remaining moist. At $2.95 though it is on the small side for cupcakes in this town so I'm gonna ding them for that. Add in that weirdness with the frosting and I'm actually torn because I did like the cake part. Hmmmm....maybe they could just make a red velvet muffin instead? 

In the grand scheme of things what does it mean? Yeah, not much, but they have some good foundations in the cookie and the cake of the cupcake that if I was in the area and needed a cookie or sugar fix I'd probably drop in and get something. Because remember, I never pass a bakery by, unless there's another one nearby and it's better, but in this case there isn't, so The Pastry Cupboard it is then!




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