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Pastry Shops / Bakeries Not To Be Missed in London?

racer x Jul 22, 2010 01:01 AM

Looking for recommendations for pastry shops in London - preferably shops that sell small cakes or tarts, or slices of cake.

I also saw mention of the cake committee in other threads. Does anyone know when their next gathering will be?

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  1. limster Jul 22, 2010 03:09 AM

    Cocomaya (gorgeous baked sweets, haven't had anything less than good there yet)
    Poliane (mostly bread, but a few French pastries)
    William Curley (choc shop with very elegant patisserie, I love their mont blanc)
    Lanka (great choux pastry e.g. Paris Brest; others are good but not great imho)
    St Johns & St Johns Bread and Wine (restaurant rather than shop but great baked to order madeleines, donuts)

    1. g
      gembellina Jul 22, 2010 03:26 AM

      Bea's of Bloomsbury - more of a tea-room I suppose, but the cakes are delicious. Unfortunately I don't spend enough time in the gym to be able to try everything that tempts me, but I had a very good choc brownie/fudge cake. Their salads and savoury tarts are also very good. They have big bowls on the counter and they put together a plate of your choice. The big kitchen at the back suggests everything is made on-site.

      1. r
        r.vacapinta Jul 22, 2010 01:50 PM

        This is specialized but if you are interested in Portuguese Custard Tarts (Pasteis de Nata) they are great at Lisboa Patisserie on Plender Street.

        My favorite cakes are from Ion Patisserie. They don't have a shop that I know of, but they are at Exmouth and Borough Market. My wife favors Princi in Soho for their cakes and tarts.

        2 Replies
        1. re: r.vacapinta
          Nii Jul 26, 2010 12:09 PM

          The custard tarts are even better at the Lisboa Bakery on Goldborne road in Ladbroke Grove. In fact, the whole bakery has the best Portuguese baked goods i've so far discovered.

          1. re: Nii
            r.vacapinta Jul 27, 2010 02:20 AM

            Are you saying that because you tried both?

            From what I understand, they are the same place with two locations. That is, they are serving the same custard tarts.

        2. g
          guyboxer Jul 24, 2010 12:02 PM

          Not a pastry shop as such,but the cake/pastry counter at Ottolenghi is a joy.

          5 Replies
          1. re: guyboxer
            Nancy S. Jul 25, 2010 04:59 AM

            I was stunned by its beauty as well. I went in to buy one of the cookbooks and was amazed by the place. Everything looks fabulous, especially the breads and pastries. I also second the suggestion for St. John Bread and Wine -- you can buy the fabulous bread and desserts to eat in or take away.

            1. re: Nancy S.
              felizglfr Jul 29, 2010 11:09 AM

              love ottolenghi! i dream about that place now since i'm back in nyc. there's no place like it to be quite honest. if you go, get the passion fruit tart.

              each branch typically offers the same type of food. although the islington branch is the biggest.

              1. re: Nancy S.
                felizglfr Jul 29, 2010 11:11 AM

                St. John Bread and Wine has the best crumble. Their brownies looks really good too.

                1. re: Nancy S.
                  chief1284 Jul 29, 2010 02:44 PM

                  Let me second both of these suggestions. St John and Ottolenghi are my two favourite places in London for baked goods. St John sourdough feels like its still alive, and will literally never go mouldy.

                  Oh and another tip, try the carrot cake recipe on the Ottolenghi website, everyone I've made it for has begged me to do it again.

                2. re: guyboxer
                  racer x Jul 26, 2010 06:42 AM

                  Do they carry the same fare at all of the branches? Or is there a particular branch that you meant?

                3. p
                  pj26 Jul 26, 2010 09:10 AM

                  I love the cakes and slices at Konditor and Cook - their lemon chiffon cake is divine.

                  1. limster Jul 26, 2010 02:15 PM

                    forgot to mention -- you can keep track of the cake committee on their blog: http://thecakecommittee.blogspot.com/

                    1. Robin Joy Jul 27, 2010 03:03 AM

                      The "Paul" chain are very good indeed, and helpfully located:


                      3 Replies
                      1. re: Robin Joy
                        fvande Jan 20, 2011 11:05 AM

                        How does Valerie Patisserie compare to Paul and the others?
                        There's also a Laduree in London?

                        1. re: fvande
                          zuriga1 Jan 20, 2011 01:12 PM

                          There's a Ladurée at Harrod's and also the Burlington Arcade. They're macarons are fine but I think the ones by Pierre Hermes in Selfridge's are even better. Then again, I never met a macarons I didn't like.

                          1. re: fvande
                            chochotte Jan 22, 2011 09:21 AM

                            They're all ok, but as with any chain bakery stuff is mostly brought in frozen/ready prepared from somewhere off-site, so they're not really 'must-visit' type places in my book.

                        2. limster Jan 23, 2011 09:33 AM

                          Just got reminded about another not to be missed pastry place -- Green Valley in Marylebone for the excellent Lebanese sweets.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: limster
                            fvande Jan 23, 2011 12:06 PM

                            Thanks...I adore on French pastries especially eclairs, croissants, and financiers
                            and love Lebanese cuisine for savory (not sweet).

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