I’ve been meaning to put up a full review of The Dandelion, my favorite brunch spot in Philadelphia, but between my freelance editing gig for O, The Oprah Magazine, gutting and painting the apartment, and figuring out how to deal with Cercospora leaf spot on my Swiss chard, I just haven’t had the time. And now that the weather is warming up, I’ve also been trying to soak up the heat outdoors as much as possible: jogging, strolling aimlessly, meeting up with friends in the city. One such get-together led me to the Hungarian Pastry Shop on the Upper West Side.
Because it’s slightly removed from my daily route on the 5 train, I don’t go very often. Yet, when I do visit this little gem, I always order a krémes. It has a light pastry bottom and a custard-like vanilla filling. Though its upper flaky layer is usually topped with powdered sugar, the Hungarian Pastry Shop uses a sweet glaze that tastes a little bit like caramel. Pair it with a latte and it is irresistible.
But I don’t love the Hungarian Pastry Shop just for its desserts; I really enjoy basking in the culture. The servers are always friendly and willing to explain their offerings. True to tradition, they’ll wish you jó étvágyat (the Magyar equivalent of bon appétit) before a meal. Yesterday I pronounced krémes like a Hungarian (“cray-mesh”), and the woman behind the counter asked if I spoke the language. We had a nice conversation about it—just the impetus I needed to start honing my Hungarian skills again.
Now, without further ado, itt van a kép (here is the photo)!