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May 2, 2009 10:04 AM

An Open Letter to Blackmarket Bakery

Dear Blackmarket Bakery:

I love you, really I do. Your lime-coconut pastries are the stuff of dreams; your Basque tart is absolutely delicious, and you make the best brioche in Orange County. I love your cakes too, with their tasty fillings. I look forward to visiting your booth at the Irvine Farmers' Market every Saturday.

But you're so expensive. I asked you for a quote on a half-sheet cake -- and the price for it, plain, with buttercream, no frills or whatever, was $82. If I wanted any kind of decoration on it it was going to be $125 or so.

I couldn't believe it. I was so upset. I really wanted a cake from you for my daughter's birthday. We had one last year (a smaller party, and therefore a smaller cake). But I thanked you politely, got in the car, and went to Van's in Garden Grove. A half-sheet cake decorated with fresh fruit and piped flowers and writing was... $50. Their filling choices aren't as varied or as interesting as yours, but for 40% of the cost I think I can learn to live with it.

Believe me, dear Blackmarket Bakery, if I ever need a carved cake à la Charm City Cakes, or some really artistic creation, I will be at your door with a design in mind and a budget to match. I wouldn't trust anything like that to Van's. But when I just need a cake with a little decoration and writing for a 2-year-old's birthday party, I just can't justify the cost.

Sorry. I hope we can still be friends.

Banh Mi & Che Cali Bakery
8948 Bolsa Ave, Westminster, CA 92683

Van Bakery
14346 Brookhurst St, Garden Grove, CA 92843

Blackmarket Bakery
17941 Sky Park Cir, Irvine, CA

Van Bakery
9211 Bolsa Ave # 125, Westminster, CA

Van's Bakery
13221 Harbor Blvd Garden, Grove, CA

Van's Bakery
860 E Valley Blvd, San Gabriel, CA

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  1. I don't know what their prices are, but I like Pierre Boulangerie which is a couple of doors down from Van's on Brookhurst.

    1. Next time, try Final Touch Bakery. Owned by Stephanie Dinh, long before she opened S Fine Dining. Best of all the Little Saigon bakeries by a clear mile.

      1. In OC, my preferred cake shop is Cafe Blanc in Costa Mesa.
        298 E 17th St. #B, Costa Mesa 926 17th St. #B, Costa Mesa 92627

        1. I once got a quote from SusieCakes, which was ridiculous. Ended up buying a similar cake from Layer Cake for about half the price.

          1 Reply
          1. re: phlin


            Layer Cake Bakery
            4250 Barranca Pkwy Suite 1, Irvine, CA 92604

            2043 Westcliff Dr, Newport Beach, CA

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