Lispian Random meanderings on whatever catches my fancy

Awesome bakery

My wife and I took our son and his buddies to Long and McQuaid on Bank at Altavista yesterday. After they finished drooling over the guitars, amps, etc. we all headed over to the bakery in the same mall — I think it’s called the Lebanese Bakery, but no matter, it’s the only bakery in that mall (looking things up in Google seems to show that it’s called Yamine Bakery at 2677 Alta Vista Dr.). To be honest we went in with the attitude we’d buy a loaf of bread or something and probably never go there again. It’s just not in our neck of the woods. That attitude has changed after we tried what we purchased!

As I said, we headed in thinking we’d be able to buy an interesting loaf of bread or something similar for dinner, instead of the usual factory bread we’d have found in the grocery store next door. Instead, it was a variety of familiar and unfamiliar baked goods.

We decided to buy an assortment of items and try them for dinner. We bought too much, so we enjoyed some for lunch today.

Let me tell you, everything was unbelievably good! Unfortunately, I don’t remember the name of nearly anything we bought — old age, I suppose ;-).

However, the somosas were unbelievably good. The best I’ve ever eaten. We all agree, they were simply amazing. We had the beef ones but they have chicken and vegetarian as well and we’ll try those as well next time. The somosas spice was perfect. Not as pungent as those from India but perfectly done so you get a nice taste of everything from the meats to the veggies to the spice mix. Incredible.

We also purchased something that looks like a crepe. Inside it had darkened thyme and sesame seeds. It has a very unique taste — my wife loved it, I found it interesting. But it is somewhat addictive. I kept thinking: “I’m not that into this taste, but there’s something about it …” With hummus it would have been perfect. I’ll have to do that next time.

We also purchased some stuffed baked goods. They are diamond shaped, open in the middle so you can see a bit of the stuffing. We bought beef and chicken — though they also have a cheese only one. It was amazing. Beyond amazing. The chicken one in particular is so good I’ll be heading back this week to buy 20 and freeze them so our kids can have that instead of the usual frozen fare we have in the house when they want a quick-reheat snack. They even want to take them to school for lunch, as well, since they can be microwaved and eaten by hand like a sandwich. I think I’ll freak out the baker when I head there this coming week and buy 20. Much better than the boxed crap the kids typically ingest in a rush.

I also bought some baklava is good, but the Arab bakery on Kilborne is WAY better — best I’ve ever tasted and worth the trip out there, too, if you love baklava.

The final thing I bought was something I thought was falafel. It wasn’t. It looks like a falafel, except in an elongated shape. The baker told me the name and said it looks like falafel but its stuffed with meat, veggies, and spices.  The outside is definitely related to a falafel but inside is veggies and minced meat. It was incredible. I bought 4. Tried one when I got home and immediately devoured a second. I kept the other two so the clan could try them and they, too, were amazed. Definitely a keeper. I’ll be asking the baker how well those things freeze. Hopefully “well” is his answer :-).

Anyway, I rarely tell people about places I’ve eaten because, well, most of the time most places don’t truly blow me away. This place blew me away. A small bakery, rather bare inside, run by a guy who obviously has a passion for the pastries and savory baked goods he makes. Coming into the place you’d think nothing there could possibly be that good. Boy was I glad I bought a goodly selection. One of the best decisions I ever made.

If you’re near that part of town and looking for some good food, check it out. You won’t be disappointed.

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October 2008
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