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Good Eats in Boston: Cannoli, Cupcakes and More

In by Amy, Dessert First, The Traveling Foodie on October 14 at 11:28 pm

I recently took a trip to the Boston/Cambridge area, and in addition to witnessing some beautiful scenes of New England foliage, I also made the rounds around the food circuit.

1. L.A. Burdick Chocolate Cafe

Most of my time was spent in eating in the Cambridge area, especially around Harvard Square. If you’re feeling like a hot drink and you’re near Harvard Square, head on over to L.A. Burdick on Brattle Street. It’s a small, narrow shop, with a glass display of delectable chocolates at the front. In the back, you can order an array of drinks. Anna took me here on a particularly blustery day.

Delicious rasberry tart from L.A. Burdick, served with a side of whipped cream.

Delicious raspberry tart from L.A. Burdick, served with a side of whipped cream.

I ordered a dark hot chocolate, and Anna got a chai. The flavor was wonderful–not too sweet. Even the chai wasn’t that bitter, even though Anna steeped it for a while. L.A. Burdick also scores extra points for cute atmosphere and tasty tarts, though its tables are a bit small for proper coffee shop studying/working. A great place for a snack or afternoon coffee/tea.

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2. Sweet Cupcakes

Cupcakes have been all the rage lately (did you know there’s a mobile cupcakery that appears around campus a few times a week?). Anna and I stopped by this place, also near Harvard Square, to pick up dessert.

Like almost all cupcake places, Sweet had a cute, light decor–lots of pink, white, and curly things. And of course, rows and rows of cupcakes.

Fall flavors galore: from front, caramel apple and pumpkin spice cupcakes.

Fall flavors galore: from front, caramel apple and pumpkin spice cupcakes.

The cupcakes weren’t the best I’ve ever had, but that might also be because I had one too many red velvets over summer. Nonetheless, I thoroughly enjoyed these fall flavors. The cream cheese frosting on the pumpkin flavored cupcake was especially lovely.

3.  Mike’s Pastry

At one point, Anna and I ventured across the bridge to Boston’s North End neighborhood to experience the legend that is Mike’s Pastry for ourselves. This came recommended by many (Nish, Eric L., and more), and after one bite of chocolate chip ricotta cannoli, I was convinced.

From Grubstreet Boston: chocolate chip ricotta cannoli from Mikes Pastry.

From Grubstreet Boston site: chocolate chip ricotta cannoli from Mike's Pastry.

The line at Mike’s Pastry was crazy. There basically is no line, except for the one out the door. Inside, a crowd of at least 50 people clamored around the display cases. Workers bustled in and out of the kitchen, some carrying huge trays of cannoli (and so many kinds!), while others used string hanging from the ceiling to secure pastry boxes.

The cannoli was well worth the wait. I’ve never been a huge fan of the Sicilian dessert, but that’s probably because I haven’t had cannoli “done right.” This crust was so flaky, and the cream and chocolate chips added the right amount of sweetness to the dessert. Mike’s Pastry is one bakery you won’t want to miss.

Interesting fact: there is no set price to the biscotti at Mike’s Pastry. It’s priced by the pound.

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