Thursday, April 13, 2006

April 06 NYC Best of: Sweets and Treats

Tied: Glaser's Bake Shop and ELK Candy Company

Yes those are Peeps on top of the cupcakes; you could pick buttercream or whipped cream frosting.

The Friday before I left, the New York Times ran an article about the last of the mitteleuropean stores and cultural landmarks on the Upper East Side/Yorkville. Glaser's Bake Shop and the ELK Candy Company, each in business for years and years, were mentioned as highlights and I spent my last morning in the city eating cupcakes and candy for breakfast. Both spots were outfitted for Easter, with pastels and bunnies everywhere.

Glaser's was empty when I arrived, but soon filled with mom's and strollers, kids shouting their hello's to the woman behind the counter, Joanna. Some looked longingly at the cupcakes, but the mom's only allowed a chick or bunny sugar cookie. As a free-from- parental-intervention but perhaps irresponsible adult, I was able to have a buttercream and Peep topped cupcake for breakfast and it was divine. The frosting was not tooth-achingly sweet and the cake was moist and crumbly. Much better than the
cupcake I sampled last fall at the vaunted Magnolia down the west Village. I also picked up a mix of tiny peanut-butter chocolate dipped, dark chocolate, and lemon cookies for J's office. I didn't sample any, but I understand they were a hit.

Marzipan at the Elk Candy Company.

The ELK Candy Company just down the street was a quieter, more precise affair. The glass cases housed row upon row of marzipan confections, including multiple trays of chicks. Not a fan of marzipan, I went for the small chocolate eggs instead--one filled with peanut butter, one with marshmallow and one with both marshmallow and caramel. J scored the peanut butter one when we shared later on (damn!), but I liked the marshmallow caramel just fine. Again, not overly sweet at all and the marshmallow was pleasantly chewy. Each egg was kinda pricey at $1.50, but for handcrafted chocolates with quality ingredients from an independent business, I'm not complaining.

Elk Candy Company
1628 Second Avenue, between 84th and 85th
(212) 585-2303

Glaser's Bake Shop
1670 First Avenue, at 87th
(212) 289-2562

The Honorable Mentions:
sugar Sweet sunshine
126 Rivington Street between Essex & Norfolk
Yes, it's run by former Magnolia-ites, but it's a laid back spot with better cupcakes. Plus they have a place to sit, and sell tea and coffee. The lemon is particularly yummy.

Economy Candy
108 Rivington Street, between Ludlow & Essex
This old-time candy store is stocked to the rafters with all sorts of sugary goodies. It also caters to a Lower East Side Jewish clientele with lots of special candies for passover. You can see some pictures here.


Jasmine said...

Those peep cupcakes look so adorable!

I wasn't able to make my usual Easter fairy cakes (I do them up to look like robin's nests).

Maybe next year I'll try them with peeps :)


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