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Alice Bakery and Confectionary at 129 South Main Street in North Wales

anyone been? Saw this artilce in the distorter online:

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  1. Thanks for posting this! I'm going to have to check it out. The sticky buns made to order sound really good.
    Do the people of North Wales really need to be told by the writer of this article that French baguettes are elongated pieces of bread with five slits? Just how provincial are we out in the far reaches of the northwestern burbs?

    2 Replies
    1. re: thehungrything

      What? You didn’t know that us North Penn Area Folk don’t know a bagel from a baguette?

      In all seriousness, I’m considering ordering up a dozen of those “to order” sticky buns to pick up tomorrow on my way into work

      (wondering if this is a good thing or a bad thing that he’s located just about a block away from Nettie Jane’s)

      1. re: thehungrything

        TheHungaryThing-- You will not be disappointed

      2. I have been to Alice Bakery two or three times and the owner is a very, very talented guy. Not only does he bake cakes AND bread but he is a chocolatier as well. I have not had a lot of items from the bakery but have tried some of the muffins, ciabatta and chocolates; all have been good. The ciabatta is very good! From what I have seen and tasted so far I am hoping that that this bakery is on a very high level along with Night Kitchen (Chestnut Hill) and Roma (Blue Bell). My first impression is that it may be a gem. I don’t think that he is sparing expense on ingredients so the prices are a little high but the products are really delicious.

        1. WoW is all I can say!! We stopped in today....Dennis was wonderful...attentive and informative...explaining everything. We bought the bagette ....a ciabatto....a foccacia and a pack of day old sticky buns. He promised that even day old sticky buns from here were better than fresh made elsewhere....and HE WAS SOOOO RIGHT!! This is a wonderful little find! Here's hoping they do well!

          1. Nice feel to the shop with friendly knowledgable people. More importantly the goods we have sampled were excellent. The baguette is dead on the French definition and as good a baguette as this poster has had. Having no idea as to which region of Italy to attribute this style of ciabatta; it was just excellent. These baked goods were, to me, worth a drive in the snow. The training, knowledge and experience of Dennis are quite obvious. People of North Wales you are blessed!

            1 Reply
            1. re: Bacchus101

              Bacchus, you're absolutely correct about the baguette. Haven't tasted one anywhere near as good as ABC's since I was in Bordeaux last fall. I'm not a big pastry eater, but I'm going to have to try the sticky buns after reading the posts here!

            2. I brought two dozen sticky buns to work today, using a coworkers birthday as my excuse. One dozen with raisins and pecans one dozen just pecans

              I called the order in yesterday and spoke with Dennis, the owner.
              First I’d like to comment on what a super nice guy that he is. It was after 5 and I was still at work and we commiserated on our long hours… (his being WAY longer than mine)

              He’s up at 2AM every day to create these wonderful fluffy buttery sweet… wait, I haven’t gotten to that yet

              I asked to pick them up at 7:15 and Dennis assured me they’d be coming out of the oven AT 7:15

              I couldn’t get myself out of the house on time, so I didn’t get there till nearly 7:30 but there they were: The still quite hot, beautiful sticky buns, waiting on the counter for me.

              It was nice to meet Dennis, who I’m happy to say told me that since the Reporter article his business has been doing quite well. He’s really into good food, but goes out of his way to have no pretense about it. Good food is, well good food and you don’t have to be sitting in a white table clothed restaurant to enjoy one of his desserts…
              He’s very customer friendly, you feel instantly appreciated and welcomed. I felt as if I just made a friend (what a nice friend to have, right?)

              He also has an assortment of loose teas and there was coffee brewing that smelled heavenly (I had mine in the car already)
              My eyes were darting around looking at all the other goodies he had in the bakery cases, chocolates and pastries and bread… oh my! It was tough to not to pick up anything else, but I had no time to linger over choices.

              I accepted my light hearted admonishment for not being there on time, scooped up the large warm box of sticky buns (which he offered to take out to my car for me) and brought them to work (heat on… trying to conserve the warmth left in the buns)

              I am happy to tell you that these are by far the best sticky buns that have ever passed these lips!

              I’m a good home cook…. I can make a really good cinnamon/sticky bun… I can’t make anything that comes close to this

              The dough is perfectly cooked, it’s light and fluffy and buttery tasting and just sweet enough (nothing cloying or cutesy about it)
              There’s the nice yeastiness, cinnamon, brown sugar, butter. Perfectly composed so that none of the flavors over power the other

              There’s also a generous amount of raisins and nuts on each set.
              They were still warm by the time I got to work and I very quickly became everyone’s best friend.

              They’re nearly gone… and I’m considering going back and grabbing a second before the rest of the office seagulls come in and swoop down to gobble them up!

              So, GO TO ALICE BAKERY…. Get the sticky buns, or probably anything else that Dennis makes. I know I’ll be going back often (waistline forgive me) to try some of his other offerings.

              1 Reply
              1. re: cgarner

                With all the sticky bun talk, I drove up to Alice's last Sat.
                I tried the bread, vanilla cupcakes, and of course the sticky buns.
                All were very good. I'll be going back.

              2. Oh my god, I cannot wait to try this place! This whole thread has me craving a sticky bun right now!

                1. Dang, is there something in the water in North Wales these days? Another distorter article mentions the Cardinal Hollow Winery, at 405 East Walnut Street winning an award. I would start a separate thread for this but I'm afraid it would get moved. Then again a local winery in Penna is a special case:

                  1. I stopped by ABC on my way home from work last night to grab a couple of baguettes. Well, I got that and Dennis gave me a sample of his ciabatta and there was this focaccia by the register with plum tomatoes and garlic which caught my eye, or was it my nose? The smell is heavenly of garlic and there’s a slight sheen of olive oil…

                    The baguettes were for the ribollita that I made for dinner last night (in the slow cooker, please don’t judge me for using a Food Network recipe, it actually turned out very good with some tweaking)

                    Anyway… between the five of us, we polished off a ciabatta, and two baguettes with dinner. I may have to rethink the whole “South Beach Diet” thing. I don’t foresee my giving up bread of this quality any time in the near future.

                    The baguette has that slightly hard crispy crust and airy crumb. The ciabatta has a nice thin crisp crust and a slightly more dense, chewy crumb. Both were excellent on their own and made the soup taste even better.

                    I brought one baguette and one ciabatta into work today, it’s 9:11 and they’re both almost gone already!

                    My husband threatened bodily harm if I brought the focaccia that he hasn’t had a chance to taste yet… I think he may have been serious!

                    I told Dennis to expect to be seeing me back more often. I saw these adorable heart shaped cakes in the case, they looked like conversation hearts… and Valentine’s day is right around the corner.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: cgarner

                      We might have just missed each other cgarner! I followed my usual pattern of posting about a new joint and then taking forever to finally make it over there. My friend and I chose sticky buns, cupcakes, a peanut butter cookie and he also got some sort of muffin.
                      All were very good. My friend did comment that the cupcakes weren't quite as good as the ones at Let Them Eat Cake in Doylestown, but then that is their specialty.
                      I was pretty frazzled when I got there, I pulled into what looked like a parking spot, but the sign said no parking at any time. Since it was so close to closing and bakery you know, I decided to risk it. The lady at the bakery said the people next door would be gone by now so it would be okay. As I glanced nervously out the window I saw a van block me in. The handsome gentleman came right in and asked whose car that was. Doh! I fessed up and offered to move right away. Turns out he was diabetic but selecting some chocolate for his wife. He moved further along the street so I could make my escape. I picked out my stuff in a hurry before anything else could happen.
                      The lady advised me to park at Papa John's right next door next time. There was a lot of traffic in North Wales and I had to back up right into the street. I thought I was gonna be trapped there forever but some sweet angel let me back up in front of them and make my exit! Was that you cgarner?

                      1. re: givemecarbs

                        Hey carbs,
                        The first Time I went, I passed it looking for parking, went up to Summit made a left and a left back out onto main and made the executive decision to park in the Papa John’s parking lot.
                        That might have been me letting you out. I know what that N.Wales traffic is like and am a sympathetic driver. I made it there about ten minutes before closing.
                        It’s not easy to get from KOP to N. Wales!

                        1. re: cgarner

                          Thanks so much if it was you cgarner! My plan next time is to park at the Tex-Mex, have three or four margaritas, walk to the bakery, and then have my friend drive me home. It will be a lot more relaxing that way.
                          So I stopped by again today with my friend and we had a bit of a late tea. I asked about hot chocolate and they might offer it tomorrow (saturday) if it is not too warm for it. The nice lady told me they just found a recipe for the hot chocolate that they like.

                          1. re: givemecarbs

                            I love that idea! Sounds like a plan.

                    2. We went to Alice Bakery for the first time today and expect to be regulars. The store is cute and the owners and staff are friendly and passionate. We had a fresh out of the oven chocolate croissant and a warm sticky bun. Both were delicious. We took home a baguette (excellent) and a couple of day-old (advertised and sold as such) focaccias for the freezer. This place is a gem and the prices are fair considering the quality of the ingredients and technique. Unequivocally recommended and worth the drive even if you don’t live close by.

                      1. The cupcakes are divine. Literally licked the crumbs off the wrapper...

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: SnowCat

                          My wife and I have been making it a weekend tradition to stop in for a pastry and cup of coffee for the past month or so, after hearing about this place here on Chowhound. We LOVE this place, the entire staff is very friendly and helpful, and the food is heavenly. My wife was a diehard stickybun fan until she tried their chocolate croissant (after a helpful suggestion from Dennis, the owner), and since then, the stickybuns have definitely been pushed lower on her list of favorites. Gem of a place for the area, and it seems that every weekend I see more people in their establishment, which is great to see. Visit it if you haven't yet, you won't be disappointed!

                          1. re: wubar

                            wubar is the jasmine tea chocolate available yet? I took John to Alice awhile back and he was most interested. John loved the earl grey tea chocolate and the chocolate croissant. He told me I was evil for taking him to Alice. How was I supposed to know he was starting his new diet that day?

                        2. It was late in the afternoon when I stopped at Alice’s Bakery after having picked up a few artichokes to make for dinner. I wanted to buy one of their great baguettes to eat with the artichoke.

                          While there I saw a few beautiful cupcakes and couldn’t resist. I bought an awesome “Opera” cupcake and ate it right there accompanied by a big glass of milk. I think it was a sour cream cupcake but it had a distinct smattering of coffee and was dipped in ganache and topped off with a buttercream icing. The cupcake was surprisingly light but also very rich and very decadent….delicious.

                          Now ordinarily, I do not eat cupcakes at 4pm, I am too old and too fat for that luxury. But, let me tell you it was really, really good.

                          I posted about Alice’s six months ago and loved it but reserved final judgment until it had been open a while. Now, six months later I can say it is a great place. Its’ got the vibe of a local bakery with the talent of a fine patisserie and boulangerie and chocolatier. The bakers obviously pay great attention to detail and use, what tastes like, the best ingredients.

                          If you live in Montgomery County, east of North Wales, where there is a dearth of great bakeries, Alice’s is worth the trip.

                          9 Replies
                          1. re: Unkle Al

                            They're at the Lansdale Farmer's Market on Saturday's too... get there early because they run out quickly (they're giving Tabora Farms a run for their money in the baked goods department)

                            1. re: Unkle Al

                              Great post Unkle. For some reason I now have a poweful cupcake craving.

                              1. re: givemecarbs

                                You've all convinced me. I live about 2 blocks from Alice's and have not yet been there, but I will now! Sounds fantastic. Stay tuned!

                                1. re: NWalesgal

                                  I just returned from Alice's. There were slim pickins; left, so I bought one of the blue cheese yeast rolls ($4.50) and a vanilla cupcake ($2.50). I wanted the butter cake ($13.00) but there was only one left, and I worried that I would eat the whole thing in one sitting. I'll wait til I have company for that one. The cupcake was sweet and delicious, with a a dollop of whipped cream on top.) And the blue cheese roll--Wow!--It was about 8" across, and about 4" high-luscious, a bit chewy and salty-the blue cheese melted in my mouth. Divine. Check it out. I will report back again after I try other stuff.

                                  1. re: NWalesgal

                                    I've enjoyed the cupcakes NWalesgal but that roll might be new. Sounds awesome. Both friends I have taken there have focused on the nice selection of decadent chocolates. The owner has one kind of coffee (really good by the way) but a huge selection of fine teas. The chocolate and the tea are a nice choice for my one friend who is cutting way back on products containing gluten.
                                    I usually get a coffee and a sticky bun if they have 'em. The sticky bun is my favorite. The first time I got a sticky bun I ate it there at one of the tables, relishing the fact that the big screen tv was turned off. One bite and I swear the colors in the room got a little brighter. It was that good.

                                    1. re: givemecarbs

                                      Next time, Chocolate or stickybuns. Can't wait!! Thanks, Carbs. NWG

                                    2. re: NWalesgal

                                      We were also there this afternoon. I got the last sticky bun, opera cupcake and a chocolate cupcake. We also wanted a baugette but they were all out. Dennis cut up a ciabatta for us to try and it was the best one my husband and I ever had! We bought one and it is already half gone! We can't wait to go back. And the cupcakes... well we were scrapping the wrappers with our teeth...

                                      1. re: spicemistress

                                        We must have just missed each other. Have you had the butter cake? It looked beautiful!

                                        1. re: NWalesgal

                                          I was eyeing the butter cake but chocolate won. I will just have to go back and get it! I've been enjoying the bread so much and Dennis is so nice, what a find!

                              2. I don't get it I have been to Alice several times with the hope of getting some of the greatness that everyone is claiming. First visit I got a sticky bun with nuts and raisins there were two raisins and one nut. the roll was good. Second visit I got a plain sticky bun and the inside of the bun was very underdone (inedible). Third visit I tried a chocolate croissant also underdone. Fourth visit I tried a blackberry danish, it had two blackberries and little filling to dough ratio. I don't know maybe I'm just getting the wrong stuff, I want to like them but not yet. BTW The chocolate is always bloomed each time I go in, am I the only one to notice

                                4 Replies
                                1. re: livefreak99

                                  are you sure you were at the right place? ok, all levity aside, I can say I've never had anything there that wasn't delicious. I haven't checked out the chocolate lately... so I can't speak to that.
                                  have you ever said anything to someone? You've been back enough times that you could have and the people there are all so very nice they'd take your issues very seriously, I'm sure!

                                  1. re: cgarner

                                    Alright cgarner 'fess up! I stopped by today for a lovely tea time and the case was practically picked clean! Was that you? :) All that was left was One cookie in the regular case and one cupcake in the refrigerated case. There were plenty of rolls and bread and such and lots of chocolate. I almost started hypervenilating he he! Dennis told me that he just made some coffee so I had that to calm down and then what to my wondering eyes should appear but a day old four pack of sticky buns loaded with raisins and nuts tucked away next to a container of muffins. Just nuked one up now and it was heavenly.
                                    Guess this place is in no danger of going out of business. I took a stroll around downtown North Wales and noticed that Netty Jean's bakery is closed for a week for vacation I guess so that might account for Alice being pillaged unmercifully. Trying to save the rest of the sticky buns for breakfasts but dunno if I can resist. They are whispering to me as I type.

                                    1. re: givemecarbs

                                      I haven't been in the store for a few weeks, we were in Vegas last weekend and have been visiting them at the Lansdale Farmer's Market... so I plead "not guilty"

                                  2. re: livefreak99

                                    Well livefreak, It would be difficult to determine if you where the only one to be disappointed in their selections at Alice but based on the responses here and my personal experience you must be having a run of bad luck, bad choices or have personal tastes which are a bit "different". After all your "tries" I would suggest you just write them off. The bakery gods are not smiling on you. Another option would be to share your comments here with the baker and decide from there if you would care to try again! Most here love the place!

                                  3. OK, l admit l am a sticky bun slut, drove today to North Wales to try Alice's. My go to buns have been the one at Balthazar in Manhattan and the one served at the Sunday brunch at LaCroix. l now have another super one to add to the list. The caramelization on the outside is perfect. Beiler's at the RTM, a few blocks from my home, feels dense and heavy next to this one.Also got two of their breads which are excellent as well. As it cost me @ $ 15 in gas, won;t be able to do too often, but whenever in the neighborhood will certainly make a detour here.

                                    9 Replies
                                    1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                                      The buns are nice and light aren't they? But plenty tasty. I was kind of shocked to find a four pack in the day-old earlier in the week. To steal from Bacchus' post, the bakery gods must have been smiling on me.

                                      1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                                        DCM, you made the pilgrimage from the city out to lil’ ol’ North Wales for baked goods? I love you for that!

                                        My husband and I are going back on the South Beach Diet after Labor Day weekend (we’ve been enjoying “la dolce vita, the good life” a little much lately)… I may stop by there for one last hurrah before we’re flour and sugar deprived.

                                        1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                                          Sticky bun slut? LMAO. Couldn't let that slide by without comment. Wonder what other types exist that I haven't heard of before?

                                          1. re: truffles2

                                            Friend of mine on the Paris board, handle Parigi, started this for me. As l recall she is a Iberico ham slut; fois gras slut, and some others.

                                              1. re: crazyspice

                                                I would like to be a buttercake slut, but Alice was out of it by 1:15 today. I always seem to be too late for buttercake. Been there numerous times, still no buttercake consumed. When asked about they suggested I call ahead and reserve. Soooo, I already am a croissant slut,ordered one from Alice. Huge, delicious and awsome.

                                                1. re: NWalesgal

                                                  So why doesn't Dennis sell the buttercake by the piece as well? l had to pass as was too big for a single.

                                                  1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                                                    Great idea, Delucacheesemonger! Why don't we suggest it?? I could probably make a lot more $$ doing this, too.

                                                    1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                                                      Sorry- I mean Dennis could make more money. He would also have to make more buttercake.

                                          2. Just found out that ABC has started serving lunch, but only on Tues through Fri. As I was there on a Saturday, i had to "settle" for four cupcake and a chocolate croissant. The strawberry lemon cupcake is the definition of perfection!

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: SnowCat

                                              I remember talking to Dennis a while back about his getting the safety equipment in
                                              I just checked out the lunch menu
                                              B.L.A.T . . .
                                              Bacon, lettuce, avocado, and tomato , toasted on white or wheat with mayo
                                              Wish I worked in NW... I'd be there like, every day, every day!