I have to confess I have yet to visit a gluten-free bakery that I didn't like. I have a huge sweet tooth and in many ways the celiac diagnosis is a huge aide in my being able to maintain a healthy weight. I am strict with the gf diet, so I never go near the office doughnut temptations and the random bowls of loose candy. When I find myself in the presence of sweets I CAN eat, I do not
show much restraint.
I told you all about Toté and the warm raisin challah. So good! And surely I have waxed poetic about Sweet Freedom in Philadelphia, which is not only gluten free but other-allergen-free. I LOVE their doughnuts and the tomato pie is a real treat!
And the cookies -- I have been known to stash a bag of their oatmeal raisin cookies in the freezer at work so that I too can have a yummy treat for those office celebrations. Yesterday the Gluten Free in Delaware County Meet Up group visited Sweet Christine's Bakery in Kennett Square, and I sampled the flax raisin muffin and the sugar cinnamon doughnut and bought
a pizza to bring home and bake up for dinner. It was all delicious! Clearly I'm a sucker for gf baked goods!
Of the three though, Sweet Christine's is probably the one I'd want to go hang out in. It's right on the main drag in Kennett Square's cute little downtown area, and I can easily imagine taking myself for a nice Saturday morning drive, getting a little something sweet (and actually having to choose among many options), sipping some excellent coffee, and feeling just like everyone else who gets to visit bakeries and eat whatever they want in cute little downtown areas.
That's not to say that the others aren't great. Sweet Freedom gets the award for the "Escape from the office for a treat" award. I could go there and hang out, but the walk from my office to 1500 block of South Street takes a little while, and ambiance of their location doesn't compare to downtown Kennett Square. And Toté gets the award for best loaves of gf bread, which the other two don't seem to be into. That warm loaf of challah after my oscopies will be one of my treasured memories that I pull out when I need a boost. You know, in those guided meditations when you are supposed to picture a place of serenity and beauty?
Mine will feature warm Tote raisin challah. The drawback of Tote is also part of the attraction. It's in the heart of the Italian Market, which is cool, but crowded and impossible to park near, so there is no "Let's just drop in and get a loaf" when you are out and about in your car. It's easy with public transportation though, and I might give myself the challenge of seeing if I can make it there and back to work in under an hour with the help of my transpass.
I can't help but think how fortunate I am to live in a place where I have THREE gf bakeries to visit, compare, and talk about. And I'm also fortunate that they are not right across the street frrom my house or I'd have a hard time with that whole weight management thing.