Bear N Mom Pittsburgh Bakery Reviews
I asked in a forum if anyone had noticed that the home town bake shops have all but disappeared. The few that were around me had closed their doors leaving us with the bakery departments in the supermarkets, which I find to be very expensive for the quality of pastry. One of the neighboring markets charges $4.99 for half a bundt cake that is dry to the taste. The same supermarket sells 1/2 a pie for $4.99 and the whole pie is $8.99. I drive 1/2 mile less to Labriola's and buy a much better apple pie for $5.99. I have a sweet tooth and I'm very particular about my sweets. Being a widow I don't want to bake just for myself. What to do? I'll tell you what I did. I went on a hunting expedition to find quality baking and this is what I found. If you notice I keep adding to the page with new bake shop finds.
The bakeries that I have reviewed have their specialties and are great bakeries in some areas. They also have websites and you can go to each to view what I have commented on as far as cake decorating goes.
I started my reviews being less than complimentary to along time favorite of most of my friends, Oakmont Bakery. This shop fell short in my eyes for many years, but I have gone back over and over again until I found their pastries and specialty items to be more than what I expected and I now go there as often as I can when I am in that area.
I was recommended to and had intended to review a long time bake shop in Bloomfield but I was told they now market their pastries through Shop N Save supermarkets. To me this means that they have joined the ranks of the supermarket bakers even though what I have purchased from that supermarket has been passable and I do buy baked goods at that chain.
Today, I read a less than complimentary review on this bakery in Bloomfield and decided to go over and interview the manager to either refute the claim that I found online or to put a nail in the coffin so to speak. Read my review below on Paddy Cake Bakery.
By chance, I was driving my granddaughter to school when she lived with me and she had taken French for 5 years and was fluent in French. She mentioned to me that her French teacher would go to a bakery in Millvale to bring authentic items from a french baker. I then visited Jean Marc Chantellier's Bake Shop and fell in love all over again with French pastry.
When working at St. Margaret Hospital, I remembered the Angel Food Cake that they served not only in their cafeteria but to patients. I was told that that specialty and other that I tried at various bake sales run by the hospital came from Potomac Bakery from the Dormont area.
I want to go on record and tell you that the shops do not give me their products in return for a review. I buy what I report on at the bake shop's prices.
I also need to clarify that my taste in bake goods is personal, I enjoy icing that is smooth and sweet. There is no excuse for gritty icing. Danish should have a buttery taste and if iced the icing should be set but not hard. If the icing is hard I would suspect that the danish is old.
If I miss any bake shops on my hunt, send a comment so I can try to get to the one in your neighborhood.
Since I first published this hub, I have gone back several times to the bake shops that I am going to review individually. Come back and see who has been moved to celebrity and given their own hub.
I recently found a neighborhood bakery on Observatory Hill and I've been told this shop has a sister shop in Westview.
About a month ago, I tried several selections from the Observatory Hill shop and wasn't overly impressed even though people I've talked to think their baked goods are the best. Since then, I've found that you have to be selective in what you buy at this shop.
The danish was excellent and had the buttery taste I've come to expect from good pastry. The apricot was scrumptious. Update--One of our sales contacts brought pastry from Schnorr's. The danish left me with an even better impression of their pastry skills. If it's danish you want you can depend on Schnorr's.
The second coming so to speak left a better impression of their doughnuts also. Perhaps they read my earlier review. I tried their raised and it was excellent this time. In my earlier review I stated that glazed doughnuts had a heavy grease taste. This could have been because the cooking oil had saturated into the product due to poor handling. The end effect was a heavy tasting doughnut rather than a light and fluffy product. The doughnut I had this week was much better and was everything I expect from a good raised doughnut.
The Palmiers (elephant ears) were good tasting but left a definite butter taste rather than leaving you with crumbly flakes which I like best.
The Kuchen was also excellenty. I tried the apricot and the nut selections.
More by this Author
Personal opinion of Dunkin Donuts and Krispy Kreme donuts. Since this is a personal opinion you are invited to vote which is better.
My personal review of Oakmont Bakery and their products
Royal Icing Recipe to decorate cookies and how to use the royal icing.