I hate people who are not serious about their meals. -- Oscar Wilde

Sunday, May 15, 2011

First look (taste) of Donna Bell's Bake Shop

Om Nomz Hero Note to Self: Paula Deen = What I think everyone in the South is like

I needed my bread fix and decided to make the trek out to Hell’s Kitchen and get me some Pizza Bianca from Sullivan Street Bakery, that is no longer located on Sullivan Street and now one 47th. Noshing on some fresh Pizza Bianca, I came across Donna Bell’s Bake Shop. Donna Bell’s Bake Shop opened up about a week ago and was very new. The place is small but loaded with lots of goodies and it is all about Southern baked goods. I sometimes secretly wish that I was from the South, well at least romanticized Southern. I imagine a childhood where I grew up eating homemade cobblers and pies from my Mom from recipes passed from generation to generation rather than sweet mung bean soup.
Big Cookies, everything is bigger in the South, or Texas...eh, close enough

Although this shop is new, walking in I was greeted warmly with a big, “Hey Y’All!” First off, awesome way to greet someone, I mean I do not think it is possible to not smile and not be cheerful when saying “Hey Y’all!” Hell, if Putin was working the counter and was all like, “Hey Y’All” I would be like, what a friendly, non-scary man. The shop is small and not much for sitting in and more from a grab and go and what they lack in space they make up for…stacking a heck of a lot of food on the counter. The counter is filled with biscuits, cookies and bars and a display case of cakes. For a small space, they most certainly fill it up. Although the bars and cookies and cupcakes (I mean, its New York, it’s a prerequisite nowadays that if you open a bakery, you need cupcakes) but I was in the savory mood so I got myself a Pimento, Cheddar Cheese and Chive Drop Biscuit and spotted some cornbread that they so happened to just put out and got that too.
Biscuit Mounds
            The biscuit is huge, like size of a fist huge. The first thing that came to mind was that it sure looks like a Red Lobster biscuit, but it was much better than that. The biscuit was tender and lacked dryness and the bits of pimento were a nice touch. It reminded me of eating Pimento cheese but refined and no Dukes Mayonnaise (what up Southern people, I know what Dukes is). 

Pimento, Cheddar and Chive Biscuit. Red Lobster biscuits orbit this biscuit
The cornbread I later found out is what they call Yankee (should we take offense to that?) Cornbread that is composed of whole wheat and jalapeno. I could not tell that there was whole wheat in it but I guess that makes you feel less guilty about eating a good hunk of cornbread. The cornbread had actual corn in it (a plus) and did not have any grit in it. The jalapeƱo was a welcomed addition that worked well with the subtle sweetness of the cornbread. The cornbread is very crumby which is a texture I look for personally in cornbread but it is probably best to eat this at a stationary position and not wearing black because you will get crumbs all over you and birds may or may not attack you like a Hitchcock movie. 

Yankee Cornbread, if this is Yankee cornbread why is it not white and blue pinstriped?

I only got a quick sample of the stuff they were offering but I was impressed and want to comeback to try more. Not only do they have the basic bake goods, they also have breakfast and lunch sandwiches as well as bread pudding one of them being a hummingbird cake bread pudding which I am looking forward to trying. They are also in the works of getting out some soups and now that I think about it, soup and cornbread would be a great lunch time fix. Those working around here are in for a new place to chow down at and with a drink menu that has Southern Sweet tea and Arnold Palmers, how do you not want to come here? Also, there is no Paula Deen-like lady working here, I know, I was totally disappointed.

Donna Bell’s Bake Shop
301 West 49th Street
New York, NY 10019

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