Contributed by John Rider
My new absolute favourite bakery in the city is Absolute Bakery and Cafe on Parliament just south of Wellesley on the east side. (And I should know good baked goods because my Mom used to bake and sell pies and tarts and other goods from our farm when I was a kid).
The pies are delicious and the flans, especially the apricot flan, is brilliant. For breakfast treats, they have the best selection around with mouthwatering danishes, pain au chocolate, poppy seed pain; and, do not, I repeat, do not miss the almond pretzel thingys (probably not their official name); they are fantastic. I have not yet tried the pecan pie but it looks so good I am looking for an excuse to go back for one. I’m told that they can add chocolate to it, if you order in advance.
They also can do other special orders.
As for the staff, when I walked in and saw the scrumptious display case overflowing with pies and cakes and other goodies, I expected to be served by a short, old, grandmotherly type with a thick Cockney accent. Instead out popped an exuberant and enthusiastic young woman with a big smile and a helpful approach.
When asked, she told me her Dad and Mom, originally from Sri Lanka, made all the food but that she knows how to make a pie too. My next trip introduced me to her equally charming and helpful but shorter (they have a rivalry about their height, it would seem from my trip no.3) sister.
You can’t leave without a smile on your face from their warm and welcoming service and a fervent wish to hurry home to start dinner with a little, okay, a big piece of delicious pie. (Do you think my guests will notice the missing piece when I serve it?)