Friday, July 11, 2008

Bakery Goodies

The storefront of the Susina Bakery in mid city, foreshadows the European delights that await inside; with curved glass windows and wood frames, the storefront looks like a sweet shop from a fairy tale. There are a few tables outside so you can profit from the (usually) temperate Los Angeles weather, or you can step inside the cafe and enjoy the cozy warmth of an upscale cafe bakery. The service here is very attentive and cheerful. I had three people ask me if I had been helped as I was waiting for my order at the counter; since I was still surveying the goodies in the glass case, they had every reason to suspect I was not done ordering.

I wish I had a reason to take home one of their fabulous cakes, like the Americano, a chocolate sponge cake brushed with espresso liqueur, filled with chocolate mousse and coffee whipped cream, covered in white and dark chocolate marbled curls, or their raspberry lemon dream, made with three layers of vanilla sponge cake, two layers of lemon curd and one layer of fresh seedless raspberry jam, then covered with white chocolate shavings and fresh raspberries.

Instead of being a glutton, I settled on their cookies and pastries instead; wonderful buttery, flaky bites of fruit or jam, made the old fashioned way, from scratch and with love. Yes, you can taste the love in every bite from the fruit tarts to the rolled nut balls filled with jam. I love it when I taste real butter in cookies and pastries instead of the margarine that most commercial bakeries use. For those with an even sweeter tooth, they have a fine selection of candies from all over the world in huge glass jars and in small packages, so you can indulge your sweet tooth as much as you wish.

If you need real food, not just sweets, they have a full cafe menu of sandwiches, salads, soups, quiches and lasagna. They will pack picnic boxes to go, so you can take their food with you to the Hollywood Bowl, the beach, or home if you don't have time to eat it here.

One of my favorite things about Susina is that all this quality is available until 11pm; I've always lamented that my favorite bakeries were closed after dark, but you can come here after a movie or dinner and get dessert!

Dessert after dark is the sweetest treat.

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