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Birmingham bakeries

bbloomfield Jan 2, 2009 11:56 AM

Hi Birmingham! Just moved here from Southern California. Looking for the best bakeries and desserts in town. Help steer a newbie in the right direction! I'm seeking the most outstanding bakeries and desserts only. Also, what's missing from the sweets scene in B'ham? I'm looking to set up shop. Thanks fellow hounds!

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  1. b
    birminghamvisitor RE: bbloomfield Jan 2, 2009 03:47 PM

    Welcome to The Ham! Honestly off the top of my head I can not think of any spectacular bakeries but quite a few really good ones...the bakery in Tria (Homewood) or V Richards (Southside) will take care of many of your needs, and I usually use them. There are 2 bakeries that show up at Pepper Place market in the summer time Cullinard Bakery (Downtown somewhere) and I can't remember the name of the other. I acutally prefer the other bakery b/c I feel that Cullinard is just a bit too pricey. Actually now that I think of it Panera is not a bad bakery, especially for a chain.

    What part of Bham do you live/frequent? As my mind has started going there are quite a few good bakeries, it just depends on where you live or want to go.

    As far as sweets the first thing that comes to mind is Soho Sweets in the Soho section of Homewood, just around the corner from Tria Market. I have also had some great cake and cookies and a few other things from Edgars...there are a few around town.

    Well that will get you started :-)

    5 Replies
    1. re: birminghamvisitor
      bbloomfield RE: birminghamvisitor Jan 3, 2009 02:10 PM

      Thank you! I checked out Tria this morning for brunch. Quite solid breakfast -- one of the most accomplished I've had in years to tell the truth. No one seems to do breakfasts very well any more. Then we checked out the bakery case. Definitely the real deal. The sweets we tasted were mixed. We had the chocolate cupcake with cream cheese frosting and while the cake was good the frosting was odd. The brownie was too fudgy and not cakey enough but had good chocolate flavor. The almond macaroon was good, though not great. However, the breakfast pastry we tried was truly outstanding -- a pear/frangipane danish. I look forward to a return trip. I spoke to the pastry chef and she said they are letting her create her own menu and she is looking to produce more pastries. I look forward to trying more.

      We are in Mountain Brook until we close on the home we bought in Pelham (just over the Hoover border). Any other suggestions you have are welcome. We tried Edgar's recently and found it to be merely typical, competently excecuted commercial baking. Will definitely check out Soho Sweets and Culinard. Thanks for the tips!

      What do you think is missing from the dessert scene in Birmingham?

      1. re: bbloomfield
        birminghamvisitor RE: bbloomfield Jan 4, 2009 02:09 PM

        FWIW- The Strawberry Cake from Edgars is really good, but I have not had much else from there. Lunch once at the Pelham location, and it was not good enough for me to go back, and I think I had a pastrie or two, but they were not memorable...obviously.

        1. re: bbloomfield
          The Chowhound Team RE: bbloomfield Jan 4, 2009 07:25 PM

          Chowhound's goal is to help people sort through their myriad chow options to find the most delicious food available to them. Speculation about what might improve the food scene in an area and discussions of what's missing in an area don't help anyone eat better now, so they're off topic for our boards. Please keep the discussion here focused on the great chow that's currently available in Birmingham. Thanks!

        2. re: birminghamvisitor
          Dax RE: birminghamvisitor Feb 6, 2009 01:48 PM

          Is Edgar's the one in the Colonade?

          1. re: Dax
            birminghamvisitor RE: Dax Feb 7, 2009 12:03 PM

            Yeah, they have a few locations, one is in the Colonade I am pretty sure, near Black Pearl.

        3. m
          mwr0978 RE: bbloomfield Jan 3, 2009 02:14 PM

          Two of my favorites are Continental Bakery and The Open Door Cafe and bakery.



          4 Replies
          1. re: mwr0978
            mwr0978 RE: mwr0978 Jan 3, 2009 02:25 PM

            Also, I forgot Savages... http://www.birminghammenus.com/savage...

            I've had some really, really good things from savages, but I've also been disappointed. Some people swear by it though, so It might be worth a look. If your in Mountain Brook then definitely check out Continental Bakery.

            1. re: mwr0978
              eatyourveggies1 RE: mwr0978 Jan 5, 2009 06:30 AM

              Pasty Art Bake Shoppe in Homewood and Angel's Cakes and Confections in Crestline Village are two of the very best in town. They bake from scratch and don't use mixes like many of the other bakeries in town. Pastry Art is known for their cake bites, and Angel's makes an addictive caramel cake and caramel cupcakes. Their chocolate cake with homemade peanut butter cups is also worth trying.

              1. re: eatyourveggies1
                bovinekid RE: eatyourveggies1 Jan 5, 2009 03:17 PM

                Bah! I just ate lunch at Surin today and was craving a good cupcake after whilst staring out the window at Angel's. Didn't know anything about it, so I didn't go. :(

                1. re: bovinekid
                  marcbham RE: bovinekid Jan 10, 2009 11:24 AM

                  You missed out, Angels cupcakes (chocolate and caramel) are absolutely amazing.

          2. m
            marcbham RE: bbloomfield Jan 10, 2009 11:29 AM

            Best cupcakes in town: Angels in Crestline village (cakes and gellato also awsome)
            Continental Bakery is great for traditional baked goods and bread - in English Village
            The cake bites at Pastry Arts in Homewood are amazing, the perfect ratio of icing to cake, the perfect sweetness for the size.
            Edgars has great all around desserts. I love the thumb drop cookies and cakes are excellent.

            I find the baked goods at V.Richards to be a bit dry and bland, they are more worried about making things big and pretty then tasting good.

            1. f
              flyerguybham RE: bbloomfield Feb 5, 2009 03:59 PM

              One thing I wish we had is better -bread- bakeries. We do pretty well with cakes and sweets, but I'm not real happy with the straight up European style breabd bakeries.

              Having said that, I like Continental best. Are there others I am missing? I just want amazing baguettes and other Italian and French breads.

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