It was nearing dusk on Mother’s Day, and the pastry counter at Findlay Market’s Cake Rack Bakery was almost empty. You might say it was the Mother’s Day effect, and you’d be partly right. But Cake Rack’s supply of baked goods is going faster and faster these days.
You can call that the Findlay Market effect, a delicious corollary to the streetcar route being right there perhaps... It certainly describes the phenomenon of Findlay Market being freakin’ crowded, like, all the time. And it’s helping businesses like Cake Rack thrive even on weekends without a holiday.
GOOD LORD, THEIR CAKES
So, here’s a thing: Cake Rack Bakery made my wedding cake. I say that not in the spirit of journalistic disclosure, but rather to let you in on an empirical judgement I made while munching on that white cake, those muddled raspberries, and that silky American buttercream. The cake is good -- dang good. Homemade good, with a dash of tasty Nicaraguan baking heritage.
That Nicaraguan baking heritage, like the rest of Cake Rack, is the doing of Jeanette Werle, a thoughtful and highly knowledgeable baker who began learning to bake in her grandmother’s kitchen. That experience, as well as her subsequent training in Canada and England, taught her to value wholesome ingredients -- cream, butter, pure vanilla extract, fresh fruits and berries -- applied with care and expertise.
No wonder her desserts are so good.
But the cakes are only half the story -- or, in this case, about a third of it. Because Werle’s small-batch tarts, croissants, pies, cookies, and biscotti are fantastic as well. Add a cup of coffee and you have a perfect breakfast. Add one of Findlay Market’s delicious cocktails (grapefruit and gin does the trick just fine) and you have a kickin’ afternoon outing.
You get the picture. Basically, just grab one of Cake Rack’s sweet or savory baked goods before they’re gone. Then, rather than being a victim of the Findlay Market effect, you can be one of its esteemed and satisfied participants.
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Cake Rack Bakery is located at 113 Elder Street (45202).