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Posts tagged ‘Cafe/Bakery/Deli’

What Do You Call a Danish in Danish?

Ok, I said I was going away. ENDCHUNK. But first, allow me to leave
some photos of danishes (well, mostly danishes) that I was sitting on with a
different purpose in mind and no longer feel like writing about. I naively
wondered if Danish people eat danishes. They
do, but call them  wienerbrød  a.k.a. Viennese  bread like our french fries and english
muffins, I suppose.

These specimens come from:

Sankt Peders Bageri


La Glace

Eaten, Barely Blogged: Bready

Saltie balmy sandwich

Saltie I'm extremely late to this tightly edited collection of mostly focaccia-based sandwiches (I'm still not clear how the little shop managed to fill an entire cookbook) because I never used to be anywhere near Metropolitan Avenue before 6pm and I am a sad person who tries to avoid bread and eschewing sandwiches is the easiest way to do that. You hear about the Scuttlebutt and the one that's mostly lettuce (don't think it's currently served) but the Balmy may be a sleeper hit. Like an American banh mi with the pate in the starring role, this hearty sandwich combines a thick layer of liver and shaved ham with pickled onions, carrots (and assorted other unidentifiable things) green olives, parsley instead of cilantro, a little jalapeño and swipe of mayonnaise. It's the soft bread (and lack of fishy component) that sets it apart.

Bien cuit duo

Bien Cuit Once the bread floodgates have opened,
there is no stopping. Even though I never once visited the full-service Smith
Street location, I was excited to hear about the weekend bread-only pop-up,
oddly situated on the ground floor of that odd narrow bright blue apartment
building on Metropolitan near the BQE turnoff that looks like something you'd
see in Amsterdam. I needed something grainy for an Easter butternut squash and
kale strata, but ended up going with the sturdy baguette instead of the
many-grain, which seemed too intense for what was essentially a breakfast
casserole. What I really wanted in addition to eat with two pounds of Acme
smoked salmon was a dark, chewy smorrebrod rye like they serve at Aamanns. Instead,
I returned Sunday and picked up that seriously dense many-grain (buckwheat,
wheat, millet, rye, amaranth and black sesame), which is described as being complementary
to cheese, but works with gravlax and dilled sour cream too. Unfortunately, I underestimated
its edibility and had to send a guest out for another loaf (plus a rye &
sunflower, for good measure and to help make sandwiches of leftover ham).

Nomad quad

The NoMad What do you eat when you've already tried
the chicken for two?
(Funny, this question came up this week because though I
know it's a whole chicken, it really doesn't seem so.) You could order it
again. Or you could jump all over the menu while slicing and picking at the freshly baked foccacia. The sweetbreads croustillant,
a.k.a. eggroll-style are a little odd because they seem too naked, just soft
innards in a shell and no sauce. Fun in theory, but they needed something more.
The gratineed bone marrow with anchovy worked better (and though I'm contradicting
what I just said,  I kind of like my
marrow plain and unadorned with nothing more than crunchy grains of salt). The
lobster wasn't a disappointing chicken alternative, and light despite being
bathed in rich buttery foam that had that nice subtle licorice quality from the
fennel. The smooth white globe of ice cream in the coconut-centric dessert
resembled a hard-boiled egg so much it was nearly distracting.

Napa Valley Sunday

The San Francisco trip was semi-impromptu so securing a French Laundry reservation just wasn’t going to happen. Besides, I’m not a “people who have BMWs or are looking at BMWs”.


After a few winery pit stops (photographic evidence) we did poke around Yountville and ate at Bouchon, instead. I didn’t feel inclined to blog my meal because I wrote about the Las Vegas location before, and I’ve been trying to wean myself from the practice. It’s like smoking; I technically quit in 2003 but you might see a cigarette in my hand a couple times a week.

Bouchon bakery macarons

However, I did photograph macarons from Bouchon Bakery. I could really take or leave the cupcake of the foodie world. It’s just a cookie, but I’m a sucker for rainbow hues.

Bouchon bakery blueberry macaron

And the blueberry wasn’t just pretty to look at—there’s no way the interior shade of azure is naturally derived—the texture and flavor was dazzling. Only a white cream layer is obvious at first glance, but there’s also a swipe of deep blue chunky jam in the center of the substantial macaron. The pistachio one was fine, but couldn’t compare to the boldness of the blueberry.

I’ve never been to the Napa Valley, and wasn’t sure what to expect. Yountville, a mini neighborhood constructed around the presence of the French Laundry, was peculiar in its manufactured quality. I wouldn’t say Disneyfied, if only because I loathe that shorthand, but intentional despite its nothingness like an outlet mall planted off a highway exit, a far flung Ikea on a street called Ikea Lane. It felt about 12 blocks long, which is about right if you look at the patch on a map.

French laundry garden

The rebellious suburbanite in me wanted to wreak havoc on the pseudo tiny town. For one, I couldn’t figure out how French Laundry’s garden, directly across the street from the storied restaurant, could be open to the public without people snatching produce. What’s to keep someone from pocketing a souvenir Jerusalem artichoke? “That’s so Brooklyn” James chided, even though he had the same thought. Humans are not that good. If they’re stealing serving vessels from Alinea, plundering gardens is a step down.

French laundry greenhouse

Greenhouse tomatoes and herbs begging to be picked.

French laundry melon patch

Melons being my most loathed food, it took restraint to not bop one of these cantaloupes lazing under foliage on its webby noggin.

After a charcuterie plate, black cod and lobster with accoutrements that reminded me a lot of this tete de cochon from Eleven Madison Park, a cheese course including a Fleur du Maquis that tasted like pee-soaked hay (not saying that’s a bad thing) and a few glasses of un-California riesling—oh, and a sherry—we set out to explore Yountvile after dark.

Yountville library

I rest secure knowing that while it’s not something I’d do in NYC, I appreciate that public libraries exist everywhere. When I get older and move away to become more hermitty, I’ll always be able to find work traumatizing the community from behind a reference desk. I wonder what kind of patrons use the Yountville public library?

Yountville mobile home park If you cross back over the main entry road from highway 29, the neighborhood tapers off into trees and half-standing houses in mid-construction.  The bad part of town? That’s where you could sneak off and get high if you were a teen. I wanted to nose around the new development but a security guard was on patrol.

Rancho twosome

Instead, we trespassed into the over 55 community. As someone who’s trying to escape the stroller-and-toy hegemony that plagues the foyers of every shared building in Brooklyn, I’ve come to the conclusion that the only place I could live in orderly peace would be in a complex of empty nesters.

Inside rancho de napa

And apparently, Rancho de Napa is a “grape place to live.” What I love about the west coast is the normalcy of trailer parks. I’ve spent much time in mobile homes of various family members over the years. It’s not trashy, it’s thrifty. And this collection was comprised of more polite manufactured homes, many tricked out with multiple stories, showy panels of windows and manicured yards. It was dark, however, and I didn’t want to use a flash lest we get run out of town. On a Sunday around 8pm, the whole village was practically in bed anyway, BMW-less visitors heading back from whence they came.

Voodoo Doughnut

It’s not as if the cupcake craze hasn’t overtaken Portland (not even the Middle East isn't immune to such fluff) but I still feel like it’s more of a doughnut town. Maple bars, specifically.

I never even particularly enjoyed those syrupy sweet tan-frosted oblongs, but I immediately noticed their absence when I first moved to NYC. Who knew maple bars were regional? And even more incongruously, why do they thrive in the Northwest, a region not known for maple trees yet are nonexistent in New England, maple syrup central?

Vodoo doughnuts bacon maple bar

Cult doughnut-hawkers, Voodoo Doughnut, knows how to use one of the culinary world’s most played out tropes—bacon making everything better—to their advantage. Thick sugary maple frosting and salty bacon strips padded by tender yeasty pasty are decadent, kind of gross yet totally makes sense. There are both more classic and more artisanal doughnut purveyors in town, but I wanted maple and bacon.

These would be amazing warm out of the oven, but judging from the near-constant lines around the block (this photo was from Sunday around noon and that red door is not the entrance–that's about half-way down the street) you take what you can get. We went back the same Sunday a little after midnight and there was still about a 15-minute-wait. A friend who lives in Portland happened to try their Northeast location that very same evening and claims to have waited 30 minutes.

Voodoo doughnut line

One of my takeways from this brief visit was that Portland has way too many lines (I also waited just shy of half an hour for a cup of Stumptown coffee where in Brooklyn you can get it in a fraction of that amount of time) and is obviously in need of more brunch options, kooky doughnut shops, quality coffee and spot on Thai food. There’s high demand for all of this, even if thought that Portland had already hit coffee saturation point.

Local grocer Fred Meyer has certainly caught on to this demand. I spied Fruit Loop encrusted doughnuts in their bakery case, which are a blatant Voodoo Doughnut rip off.

Voodoo Doughnut * 22 SW Third Ave. Portland, OR

North Oregon Coast Dining

The Oregon Coast, known to cynics (ok, myself and a few friends) as “suicide city,” isn’t the most uplifting region of the country. It’s chilly, damp, rugged, sunless, and there really aren’t any jobs to speak of. My mom and her husband moved to Nehalem a little over a year ago and have already thrown in the towel. Well, they’re keeping their mobile home for weekend excursions and future early retirement, but it’s back to the Portland area for now.

Manzanita inn captain's bed I was only in the area briefly, yet happened to be there (at the lovely Manzanita Inn, wood-paneled late ‘70s chic complete with Jacuzzi and captain’s bed built into a wall nook) on a freak of nature 80-degree September day. Totally unheard of. I even got a sunburn, which isn’t saying much since I also managed to turn red and peel during an outdoor wedding in Wales.

Unlike, say, the Chesapeake Bay, Nantucket, or other recognizable Atlantic Ocean destinations, the Oregon Coast isn’t particularly known for its edibles. People don’t even eat seafood in the state. Seriously, I never ate fresh fish, crustaceans or mollusks growing up. Gorton’s all the way. I even stumbled upon a message board discussion about why Portland lacks the fine dining seafood restaurants of Seattle, San Francisco, Vancouver or even landlocked Las Vegas—unadventurous, cheap denizens being the theory.

Nonetheless, here is a rundown of what I ate. As to what I drank, that’s a serious question. No matter how much I imbibed, I did not become drunk, just tired. They say that you become inebriated faster at high elevations like Denver. Would it stand to reason that at sea level you gain a tolerance for alcohol?

Wanda's eggs benedict

Wanda’s Café, a cute restaurant high on ‘50s kitsch and hefty portions, is popular with both locals and tourists. There is often a long wait, I’ve been told. We were seated no problem on a Friday morning, though. As I’ve said before, breakfasts rarely happen in my world and normally I get up too late on vacation to indulge in both breakfast And lunch. This 10am plate of eggs benedict was a concession all around. For me, that was early. For my mom and sister that was late. They’re dog people. Cats don’t need to be walked around outside at 7am, which is only one reason why they are a superior pet. This very second it’s Saturday and I didn’t wake up until 11:30am, proof that you only inherit so much from your family.
Bayfront bakery

As if hollandaise and ham topped eggs were not rich enough (I take full advantage of my normal food/alcohol/nicotine regulating while on vacation—hollandaise appeared before me twice in one week) I also picked up a few doughnuts at Bay Front Bakery in Garibaldi while hitting thrift/antique stores. Not because I was hungry for sweets but because I had been regaled with tales of amazing fritters fresh from the oven.

Bayfront bakery fritters

I picked up an apple and a cranberry, which happened to be the two-for-a-dollar special that day. They had just the right balance of soft pliable middles and crackly, fried, glazed edges. My pecan roll was a bit dried out. The fritters are where it’s at.

Just as I predicted, by 2pm I was not hungry for lunch. My sister and husband bowed out of the excursion for Dungeness crabs at the Fish Jetty and my mom and husband showed up but has no interest in eating the creatures. Sister is vegetarian and mom says she only eats her seafood breaded and fried. People!

Jetty fishery

With roots in the Baltimore/D.C. area, James is a crab fanatic. I, myself, have only ever had blue crabs and in his presence. Despite more than two decades on the West Coast, I never ate a single crab (ok, once in grade school a friend’s family brought me along to a crab festival in Astoria but I don’t recall actually eating any, just the plastic bibs, wooden mallets and the thought that maybe crab-eating was a black thing because none of the white people I knew ever ate them).

So, we were excited to try Dungeness. “This is the first time all week I’ve seen you two smile,” remarked my mom. We were totally alone in our crustacean fervor.

Jetty fishery bay

The Jetty Fishery is down a steep hill where Nehalem Bay forms an inlet. There, you can rent a boat and catch your own seafood or have whatever is on hand in tanks cooked for you. There are a few picnic tables, an outhouse, a convenience store where you can pick up soda or beer, but oddly no sinks or handiwipes in sight. Eating crab is messy. Bring your own handiwipes.
Jetty fishery seafood

I don’t think James realized the size difference between blue and Dungeness crabs because initially he was going on about getting half a dozen. That’s excessive. I can’t recall the exact prices per pound, possibly $8, but we ended up with three crabs and three oysters (I didn’t even think to ask what variety these monsters were) for about $48. We had everything steamed, took a number and waited about 20 minutes for our chosen items to arrive in a metal pan. Old Bay is not de rigueur in Oregon, but they do have big plastic shakers of seafood seasoning, very similar in flavor, if you ask.

Jetty fishery dungeness crab

I have not eaten enough crab in my life to make authoritative taste comparisons, but for sheer ease of eating, Dungeness is a million times more superior. Blue crab picking is fiddly, hard work and I leave still hungry, hands cut up and stinging. This is like eating real food, more like lobster, lots of payoff.

Jetty fishery oyster

The oysters were so meaty, it was practically like biting into a cutlet. I don’t know if these are typically eaten raw, it seemed assumed that we’d want them steamed. Smoked oysters are also a big coastal treat. I ate the first oyster immediately, and got a mouthful of warm briny liquid. I didn’t tackle another until much later and the cooled down meat had absorbed all its juice. Get them while they’re hot.

For dinner, my sister and I treated my mom for her birthday. Choosing a suitable venue proved challenging. Price wasn’t so much the issue, but finding someplace special occasion worthy that wasn’t stuffy. Not that anyone gets dressed up to dine in Oregon anyway. Polos and Dockers are as good as it gets.

Wine bars are not ubiquitous at the coast, and in Seaside, the Jersey Shore of Oregon, they are particularly unusual. Casual, fun, non-crappy was what I wanted and that’s what I got with Yummy Wine Bar. Yeah, the name’s a bit eh, but you have to keep context in mind. This isn’t a major city where small plates and wine flights are on every corner.

Yummy wine bar cheese plate

We chose the meat plate, cheese plate and hors d’oeuvre platter to share and start. Split amongst six, and two non-meat-eaters, the cheese was gone in an instant. In addition to crackers, we were also brought warm slices of focaccia with honey butter.
Yummy wine bar starters

The spoons contained a black bean puree topped with smoked trout. I picked a Loosen Bros. Riesling and a La Rioja Alta Rioja for the table. Simple but good.

Yummy wine bar greek shrimp

My attempt to eat three substantial meals was just about thwarted by these tiger prawns. I chose something with lots of fresh produce—and the dish enlivened by capers, lemon juice and basil was light—but I could barely get through it. And dessert was an impossibility.

I was looking forward to a few after dinner drinks at the only bar in Manzanita, unfortunately, the San Dune Pub had a $5 charge to listen to cover band versions of “Superstitious” and rowdy frat guys were crowding the entrance. Instead, I drank a few bottled microwbrews in my sister’s motel, which was also party central with youngsters drinking and running around outside all night (apparently, James and I had booked the classy, pricey adult no, not “adult” hotel in town) and tried to avoid all of the 9/11 coverage on TV.

Oregon slug On the two-block-walk back to our hotel I spied one of my Northwest enemies, the slug. Ack, I’d marveled all week about how the unusually warm weather must be keeping these normally rampant slimy guys at bay. There he was on my final night, quintessential Oregon.

Wanda’s Café * 12870 H St., Nehalem, OR
Bay Front Bakery * 302 Garibaldi Ave., Garibaldi, OR
Jetty Fishery * 27550 Hwy. 101, Rockaway Beach, OR
Yummy Wine Bar * 831 Broadway, Seaside, OR


Before there was Food Republic there was BreadTalk (same company). I don’t have that many food obsessions but I can definitely count pick-a-mix sweet and savory bakery goods as one of them. I am so obsessed that I have given semi-serious thought to how I could come up with a New York interpretation. Sure, we have Fay Da, Taipan Bakery, Café Zaiya and their ilk thriving in Asian-heavy neighborhoods but what about a more universal equivalent that would appeal to Americans?

I was looking at BreadTalk’s franchising program. You need $500,000 and they only have locations in Asia and the Middle East. Not so doable, and it’s not like they have any name recognition in the U.S. anyway. I’d be better off starting from scratch—not that I have even a sliver of business sense.  Maybe if I had one of those The Apprentice type personalities.

Bread talk bacon floss bun

Bacon floss bun. I’ve mentioned floss already. It’s essentially finely shredded jerky and you find it in buns, mini egg rolls and sometimes in stir-fries. Crispy, salty and good.

Bread talk nacho cheese buns

I didn’t find nachos to all that pervasive in Singapore, so a nacho cheese bun was a little odd. Yet nothing can beat the nacho cheese-drizzled Cinnabon I once spied in the Petronas Towers.

Bread talk obunma

Obunma sums up why I like BreadTalk. They are not afraid of novelty and current events. Obama was also used as a marketing gimmick for Hip Diner USA.

Hawaiian pizza

There’s a lot of Hawaiian combos in S.E. Asia. Finally, a place where I don’t have to hide my love for ham and pineapple.

Frankfurter tortilla

Ok, this frankfurter craziness is not from BreadTalk but an upscale grocery chain, city’super, in Harbour City. Hong Kong malls are so chichi with their Prada, D&G, Versace, Vivienne Westwood and the like (maybe the Monchichi shop negates that). There’s nothing upscale about a weiner wrapped in a tortilla, though. I also picked up a classier camembert walnut bun.

BreadTalk * various locations, Singapore & Hong Kong

Margaret’s Café e Nata

Of the three treats one might seek out in Macau, egg tarts were the only one I got to. Jerky is all over Hong Kong so I wasn’t worried, but I may regret not making time for a pork chop bun.

Margaret's cafe e nata

In a perfect world I would compare tarts from Lord Stow’s and Margaret’s. Coloane is a trek but Margaret’s was just down a little alley one block from the Hotel Lisboa where we stayed our last night. It feels hidden but there’s nothing secret about it. On a Sunday afternoon all of the outdoor seats were taken and there was a huddle (Chinese aren’t big on lining up, or rather queing as they like to say in both Singapore and Hong Kong with a nice Q reminder painted on the ground in front of taxi stands. As an aside, as much as Singaporeans are rigid rule followers, they totally don’t let riders off the subway before rushing on, an aberration to even the rudest New Yorker) of customers crammed into the small storefront waiting to be helped.

Egg tarts are a regular at Chinese bakeries. But the Hong Kong style uses a stiffer shortbread crust and the custard is smooth with an unblemished canary yellow top.

Margaret's egg tart

The Portuguese style favored in Macau (as well as Chinese KFCs) is slightly different, richer and more flavorful. These are wobbly custards encased in flaky, buttery puff pastry layers. The surfaces are burnt in spots and caramelized.

What I found surprising is that these goodies do not have a long tradition in Asia. From I understand they were brought to Macau in the '80s by an Englishman, Andrew Stow of Lord Stow's Bakery, and were meant to replicate pastéis de nata from Portugal, of course. This convoluted history makes perfect sense for such a culturally mixed island, somehow.

My only crime was not eating these while they were still warm, but I had just finished a multi course lunch at Galera a Robuchon across the street. Yes, you get them straight out of the oven and it’s worth braving the crowds for.

Margaret’s Café e Nata * Gum Loi Building, Rua Almirante Costa Cabral, Macau

J.Co Donuts & Coffee

1/2 I wonder if people in Malaysia read about fast food sensations on NYC blogs? Probably not. I keep tabs on a few Singaporean and Malaysian blogs, and one of the things I find most fascinating are foreign trends. In the mid-2000s I kept hearing about Rotiboy, which I eventually tried.

Last year I started noticing internet chatter about Indonesian donut chain J.Co. I was particularly amused by their use of outré ingredients like cheese. And the alcapone donut combined with a bullet hole motif on the company’s cardboard boxes was kind of sassy.

So, when I was unexpectedly faced with a big J.Co Donuts café with seating (I always imagined them as a take out counter) at Bugis Junction right after a fun stop at Raffles Hospital, a block away, I had to sample the wares even though I’d just eaten sweet, buttery kaya toast.
One vacation problem is that I use the break as a license to snack with hedonistic abandon. I’d buy anything that caught my fancy whether or not I had an appetite for it at the time. Consequently, lots of snacks sat around the hotel room not getting eaten at their prime.

I thought getting four donuts to share with another was being kind of gluttonous, but I had nothing on the two teenage boys in front of me in line who got three donuts apiece on a plate to eat right there on the spot. mocha and tiramisu donuts

These donuts, mocha and tiramisu, had a glossy unusually thick layer of frosting that would be gooey if fresh and warm. When I tasted these the next morning, they were still good but the chocolate had hardened like Magic Shell. It was almost like having a candy layer atop a donut that wanted to flake off in chunks. green tea and cheese donuts

Green tea tasted like green tea; I’m more into the color than the flavor. The most interesting donut by far was the cheese. James was scared of it, but I thought it had grotesque charm. I actually prefer hole-in-the-middle non-filled donuts just for the sweet bready yeastiness. This has all that softness with a salty melted parmesan-esque (funny, I just looked up their own description and it's "New Zealand cheese." I told you Southeast Asia was obsessed with Kiwi dairy) coating. I expected something more bagel-y, but nope, it was a genuine donut encased in cheese just like it looked.

It wouldn’t make a half-bad breakfast treat, especially if it had some bacon crumbles sprinkled on. Though being Southeast Asia, they’d most likely use “floss,” the ubiquitous flaked jerky that shows up in strange places.

J.Co Donuts & Coffee * Bugis Junction, 200 Victoria St., Singapore

Cafe Tortoni

1/2 Sure, Café Tortoni is touristy but it’s also historic (the oldest café in Argentina—we just don’t have that many 150-year-old establishments in the US) and I didn’t feel bad for stopping in for a traditional breakfast of espresso and medialunas. It's not even close to being the Carnegie Deli or Magnolia Bakery of Buenos Aires.

Cafe tortoni medialuna and coffee

I assumed the croissants would be buttery and French, but this specimen at least, was crackly and sugar glazed more like a flaky cookie. I was more interested in all of the new-to-me fracturas (pastries) but you can’t really order them from your table if you don’t know their names.

Cafe tortoni ham and cheese sandwich

James ordered a ham and cheese sandwich. I really like these simple jamon Serrano bocadillos like you find in Spain. Cured meat is so much more exciting than deli ham.  

Café Tortoni * Avenida de Mayo 825, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Tim Hortons

I honestly don't think I even consumed a dozen donuts (I just can't type doughnut even though it seems more proper) in all twelve months of 2007–they're not my sweet of choice–but I made up for it over New Year's weekend. And the reason for that uncharacteristic behavior is simple: Tim Hortons. I know they're all over the United States now, but if something isn't in the immediate tri-state area it's still exotic to me.

My donut binge began unwisely at a LaGuardia Dunkin' Donuts. While picking up a 6am coffee, I couldn't resist an artificially strawberry-flavored pink glazed specimen. That might've been a mistake.

I still can't say whether it poisoned me or the tiny plane was the source of my stomach distress, but I was queasy an hour later when disembarking in Buffalo. However, I didn't get violently ill until after popping the two Tums James gave me that tasted like they were made of shampoo, apparently from sitting in the bottom of his toiletry bag for months.

We stopped at a Tim Hortons (which is great because it makes use of what I call the white trash S. Tim Horton is the hockey player. Tim Horton's would the hockey player's restaurant. Tim Hortons is just colloquial. I cringe when I hear people say Barnes & Nobles, Nordstroms, JCPenneys and the like, though just recently I caught myself saying that I worked off Williams St. when it's plain ol' William) on the outskirts of Buffalo and the tragedy was that I was too ill to indulge in a timbit, apple fritter or any of the Canadian chain's specialties. My queasy stomach temporarily stood still when REM's "Driver Eight" came over the speaker while I was hunched over the toilet bowl in one of their bathroom stalls because it was an odd song to be playing. Eh,  and then I threw up in their parking lot and repeated that lovely performance two more times during the two-hour drive to Toronto. Sadly, I never got to sample their excessive coffee, breakfast sandwich and donut combo.


Luckily, I perked up enough to later enjoy a maple-glazed Boston cream donut at a mall where strangely, the anchors were Wal-Mart and nofrills. Maple bars, a total NW staple, don't even exist in NYC; people have no idea what you're talking about if you bring them up.

On our third Tim Hortons excursion I got a butter pecan tart. I forgot about these mini treats that seem to flourish in Canada. They're like tiny individual pecan pies with a thicker richer crust. You can also find plain and raisin topped versions in any grocery store.


We love Tim Hortons so much that after our first visit to Toronto in 2000, we named a plush toy rabbit (James's mom is always giving him pointless and inappropriate gifts) Tim Horton. I don't know what ever happened to him, though this very second there is a nameless stuffed animal reindeer and giraffe in the living room.

Tim Hortons * throughout Canada and random U.S. states