Tag Archives: NC bakeries

Girl’s Day Fun

13 Aug

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

My husband and I share our birthday month, August and exactly two weeks apart. Our daughter in Florida plans to visit between our birthdays to celebrate both. Husband’s day was on Tuesday and our daughter arrived from Florida on Wednesday. Not even close to half way between, but who cares? She is here and we are happy

Wednesday was a long day for my husband, what with the trip to the airport, a late lunch, some shopping and then an hour and a half drive home. After a long day, he needs a full day to recuperate, so I planned a fun girl’s day adventure, locally of course.

Someone recently asked in the what’s happening in Franklin Facebook group, where to find a good bakery. I was surprised at the number of bakeries in this small town. I decided our girl’s adventure would be a spin off of the well known pub crawl. We would do a bakery craw

Armed with the phone GPS I typed in the first bakery address, Cinnamon Hill Pastries and Gelato. We wouldn’t have found it without the GPS. I am pretty sure the previous building tenant was a tattoo parlor and I would have driven right past it. Actually Rebekah would have driven past, as I was navigating. Once inside there was no sign of its possible tattoo history with it’s gleaming wood floors and large, bright windows. The owner had a large assortment of homemade gelato and a small assortment of European pastries. We decided to share an Italian pastry with a long name. The owner suggested simply calling it a seashell pastry due to its shape. The outer texture was similar to an italian bread loaf yet flaky like a croissant. Inside was infused with orange flavor and ricotta. It was delicious. For our gelato, we chose hazelnut. I haven’t been a fan of hazelnut, it always seems to taste blah. But this hazelnut was good

Our next stop was Brooklyn Bagels, a recommendation from a friend who heard about our adventure. She spoke so highly of it, we had to try it. Situated on a corner in Franklin’s downtown, it is a good location for those looking for a quick treat or meal. I was impressed with their menu which included sandwich bagels and even a pizza bagel! The owners are friendly and definitely from New York. Their goal is to give their customers good service with wait times under 5 minutes. Rebekah chose an Asiago bagel to enjoy for breakfast Friday.

A customer in Cinnamon Hill recommended Bend Willow Bake Shop for its breads. It should have been s straight shot down from Brooklyn Bagels and it was, we simply didn’t see it. After passing it, GPS rerouted and suggested we turn the wrong way on a one way street. With two failed attempts we decided to move on to La Toluca, a Mexican bakery that had rave comments on Facebook for quality and price. We did make a quick stop at the library used book store so Rebekah could dash in to search for books by two of her current favorite authors. That girl reads so many different genres I can’t keep up with her favorites.

La Toluca did not disappoint. As soon as we entered we inhaled the tantalizing aroma of fresh baking. I admired the lighted display cases with their overwhelming assortment of pastries. After a lot of oohing we decided on a pineapple pastry and planned to stop at a local park to eat it but plans change.

Since we would be approaching Bend Willow Bake Shop from a different direction, we decided to give the GPS one more chance. We found the bakery but not without some difficulty. The bakery is in a lovely, well landscaped. two story house. Everything color coordinated including the sign. Tasteful blending is admirable but blending in so perfectly a business is unrecognized, not so much.

This bakery is all about the ambiance. A wide front porch invites one to sit a while. Inside is trendy with conversation friendly seating and the baked goods tastefully displayed.The assortment of baked items was limited, but it was getting on to mid afternoon, so definitely might have been a contributing factor. We chose an interesting pastry, peach hazelnut, that seemed to have a biscuit type bottom and a course muffin type top.

Standing behind the house is a wooden gazebo and we decided to eat our pastries there, rather than driving to the park. The pineapple pastry from La Toluca was by far the better of the two with a crunchy and flaky outside and an inside muffin texture that was light and fluffy. The peach hazelnut biscuit didn’t have much flavor.Definitely no pop. This may be due to the burnt bottom. The burnt biscuit flavor wasn’t distasteful to me as I enjoy the depth of flavor the burn adds but in this case it obscured any other flavor. La Toluca also impressed with its pricing. Our pastry there cost $1.25 and the one at Bend Willow cost $3.50.

Although rain was predicted, we enjoyed partly cloudy skies with a few rumbly clouds. What a fun way to spend an afternoon. Maybe next time she visits we could do an ice cream crawl.

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