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Help finding a bakery that won't break my bank.

z
zizzpudding Jan 2, 2009 07:21 PM

I'm attending a large brunch-like gathering on Sunday (approx. 30 people) and I'm down for bringing the baked good. Only thing is my oven is on the fritz.

Can anyone recommend a good bakery to get some treats like cookies, croissants, baklava, tarts, petit fours or anything really? Any kind of Bakery will do... Italian, Swedish, Portuguese... but don't want to go to Rosie's, Petsie's, Mike's or Modern (been there, done that, looking for something a little different with variety and I don't want to completely empty the wallet... My budget is about $75.00).

I'm located in near Central SQ in Cambridge so anything in Cambridge, Brighton, Arlington or Somerville will do... but can travel further out to the burbs if needed.

Thanks in advance.

  1. Science Chick Jan 18, 2009 02:37 PM

    I know I'm late, but since you were willing to consider Brighton, I wouldn't want to leave out Clear Flour bakery. Great cookies, croissant and tarts.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Science Chick
      j
      janzy Jan 19, 2009 09:00 AM

      i think the poster mentioned a bakery that wouldn't break the bank.
      imho Clear Flour is very expensive, very, very good, but expensive.

    2. b
      BackBayGirl Jan 13, 2009 08:18 PM

      I know you've already had the brunch gathering, but Japonaise Bakery at the St. Mary's stop in Brookline, is very good and from what I recall, reasonable as far as prices go. Just some food for thought (no pun intended) for the future.

      1 Reply
      1. re: BackBayGirl
        gibberisimo Jan 18, 2009 02:28 AM

        What is that bakery on cambridge st. in east cambridge between the train tracks and what used to be the old harrington school. It was soo good, and when i moved i used to take the 69 down just to get some of them eclairs and napoleans, i seriuosly thought it was a hidden jewel. hope its still in businness, oh yea, it's right next to the bread place!

      2. f
        fragolino Jan 11, 2009 03:45 PM

        Any discussion of cheap bakeries must oughtta include Yi Soon in Allston, but it might not be the kind of bakery you have in mind. Their inventory is mostly these sweet and savory buns. I'd guess they have 30 varieties. They've got a good rotation and will sometimes surprise even longtime patrons like me with a few new concoctions among them. The price range for the buns is $1-$2. The non-bun options which are good are the cream puffs and these longish cookies that are ideal for dunking into tea or coffee. The price range for these is higher - $2-$3 per item.

        1. greygarious Jan 11, 2009 02:03 PM

          Also too late, but Costco's instore bakery has never disappointed me. I am addicted to their Roasted Garlic bread and Multigrain Bread, and they make a generous cheese danish. There have been raves about their rugalach on CH so I plan to try them next trip.
          The pies look good but they are huge and I can't use that much.

          1. t
            tweetie Jan 11, 2009 07:13 AM

            So sorry you were disappointed with Lakota. I agree that the ever rising prices are getting tougher to pay. (I go back to a time when they were $5 a dozen!) To justify the investment I select the true gems of the place, anything chocolate dipped and the filled cookies. The florentines are superb too. While the plain cut out butter cookies are festive and tasty, I never purchase them. As an aside, the cakes are fantastic too.l

            1 Reply
            1. re: tweetie
              d
              Dizzied Jan 18, 2009 05:46 PM

              As I was reading about Lakota, that's just what I was thinking -- the filled cookies are amazing...I also like the macaroons. The butter cookies are pretty, but they're just butter cookies. Stick them together with mocha cream and dip them in chocolate and you have one of my favorite cookies ever.

            2. t
              taxi Jan 11, 2009 06:22 AM

              I know this is too late but Royal Bakery on Cambridge Street two blocks up from the Lechmere T stop on opposite side. Unbelievably good and soooo reasonably-priced goods.

              1 Reply
              1. re: taxi
                Eatin in Woostah Jan 19, 2009 07:48 AM

                Are they related to the Royal Bakery in Lexington? Also a great, very reasonable bakery.

              2. z
                zizzpudding Jan 5, 2009 05:50 AM

                Thanks for all the great suggestions. Here is my report back.

                While the cookies from Lakota were appreciated for the way they looked, people weren't digging in. ( I got a bunch of sugar cookies in the shapes of snowmen, polar bears, stars etc. ). The bars were "not as good as homemade".

                The winners were the baklava from Sevan and the cookies from Arax. While at Sevan, I picked up a 1/2 pint of hummus, babba and a couple of other treats from behind the counter for dinner on Sat night... it was yummy. I highly recommend theirs over supermarket any day.

                Tonight I'm doing a taste test between home made hummus from the party last night and the hummus we got at Sevan... you can never have too much ;)

                Thank you all for the suggestions!

                3 Replies
                1. re: zizzpudding
                  enhF94 Jan 11, 2009 04:50 AM

                  Also too late, but consider the new "Bread and Co." on Broadway in Som'l (where Bickford's used to be); Brazilian and French pastries.

                  1. re: enhF94
                    RoseWethersfield Jan 13, 2009 03:51 PM

                    Can you talk more about Bread and Co? Worth going to? What is good?

                    1. re: RoseWethersfield
                      enhF94 Jan 18, 2009 06:38 PM

                      I'm having trouble coming up with a coherent opinion about it, sadly.

                2. f
                  fayth Jan 2, 2009 08:26 PM

                  My absolute favorite bakery for special treats is Lakota Bakery in Arlington. Cookies and bars are $1.25 each. Top quality ingredients, very creative flavors,substantial size, absolutely beautiful.Great for gifts. Closed Sundays.
                  See info at http://www.lakotabakery.com/index.html.

                  Another good source for affordable bakery treats are the Middle Eastern shops on Mount Auburn St. in Watertown. Tabrizi Bakery (56 Mt. Auburn St.)is quite good. See info at www.tabrizibakery.com.

                  11 Replies
                  1. re: fayth
                    Luther Jan 3, 2009 04:28 AM

                    Lakota cookies are indeed fantastic. But $1.25 for a smallish cookie is "affordable?" Yikes.

                    I second the recommendation for Armenian shops, if baklava and coconut macaroons would be sufficient. I really like the macaroons at Sevan.

                    1. re: Luther
                      j
                      janzy Jan 3, 2009 05:17 AM

                      Do yourself a favor and take the trip to Revere.
                      Try the pastries at Luberto's bakery on Broadway, pretty close to the Chelsea line.
                      Great stuff at inexpensive prices.

                      1. re: janzy
                        mcel215 Jan 19, 2009 06:56 AM

                        Yup, Luberto's stuff is so, so good. Great prices too.

                        I second it!

                      2. re: Luther
                        z
                        zizzpudding Jan 3, 2009 06:15 AM

                        I've passed Sevan many times and have never been in. I think I'm leaning in that direction. All three in Watertown/Arlington are so close on the map, I think I might stop in on all of them. The baklava at Sevan looks awesome. I will report back.

                        1. re: zizzpudding
                          galleygirl Jan 3, 2009 06:34 AM

                          Get the Tahini Brad at Sevan, but get the rest of your cookies,baklava, and Persian treats (mmmm, Rosewater!) at Arax....HUGE variety! Boy, could I have fun spending $75 on pastry there!!!!!

                          1. re: galleygirl
                            z
                            zizzpudding Jan 3, 2009 06:47 AM

                            Well... that does it. I'm spending the rest of my morning on Mt. Auburn ogling over all the bakeries. Damn, I wish I hadn't already eaten breakfast.

                            My SIL who is hosting the brunch is Lebanese and I'm sure she'll appreciate the effort. Thanks for the suggestion. I might have to up my budget ;)

                            1. re: zizzpudding
                              galleygirl Jan 3, 2009 08:09 AM

                              Grab a slice at Stella's first...;)

                            2. re: galleygirl
                              n
                              newhound Jan 3, 2009 08:16 AM

                              Eastern Lamejun on Belmont Street (walk down Arlington Street from Mt Auburn, take a right on Belmont) has these pistachio cookies that I find swoon-worthy. They are thickish, sugar cookie-like in appearance, with a depression in the middle holding crushed green (natural) pistachio pieces.

                              1. re: newhound
                                galleygirl Jan 3, 2009 09:01 AM

                                Yeah, they have those at Arax, too. While I go to Eastern Lamejhoun for lamejhoun, I find the rest of their selection a little thin...

                              2. re: galleygirl
                                b
                                butterfat Jan 4, 2009 06:01 PM

                                Aww, I really love Sevan's baklava! Either the pistachio or cream versions are easily the best I've ever tried anywhere.

                                1. re: butterfat
                                  m
                                  makonna Jan 13, 2009 07:35 PM

                                  Does the cream version not have nuts? Nut allergy. So I'm hopeful that there's a version to add back into my diet. :)

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