Thursday, June 21, 2018

Flour Bakery, Boston

Flour Bakery has been on my list of bakeries to try in the Boston area for ages.  When locals find out I am coming to town, and they know my love for baked goods and sweets, they always mention it, and in particular, the sticky buns.

Flour is a mini chain at this point, with eight locations in the Boston area.  They produce morning pastries of all kinds (scones, muffins, breads, croissants, yadda, yadda), plus cakes, tarts, cookies, pies, etc, etc.  On the savory side, they have sandwiches on their own bread, grain bowls and salads, quiches, and the like.

I've actually stopped in several times, always aiming to try those sticky buns, but alas, they sell out quickly.  My eyes were also on the bread pudding, as, well, I adore bread pudding, and they make it ... from the sticky buns!

I finally got to try a bun.  I was ... underwhelmed?
So Many Treats.
One night, I stopped by at 7pm just to see what they had left, hoping for some of the bread pudding perhaps, and was shocked to see sticky buns.  I had no choice but order it.

The Setting

I visited the Back Bay location, likely one of the least popular, but, convenient to where I was passing by.  My previous stop ins were to the Cambridge locations, much more inviting.
The space at the Back Bay Flour Bakery location isn't particularly large nor charming, a narrow place, with a counter up front to order and retrieve your food, counter seating with stools along the window, and just a handful of tables (maybe 2?).
Hallway Seating.
There was additional seating for 3 more people at a counter along the hallway to the bathroom.  Again, not very charming, but, at least when I visited, most people were by themselves, and so this worked well.

The Treats

Flour Bakery does serve savory food.  They have salads, sandwiches, quiches, and more.  But I was there just for dessert, as I wanted my baked goods!
Cookies & More ...
The lineup, even at 7pm, was fairly extensive.  Tons of cookies (easily ruled out since I don't like cookies), breads, and cupcakes.

Although I'm not one for quickbreads, I've heard great things about the coffee cake and the apple snacking cake, so those were both on my list to check out.  But better things lay ahead ...
More Tempting Treats ...
The next section captured my eye instantly.

Not pictured (whoops) is a strawberry rhubarb slab pie that looked excellent (just to the right of the chocolate brioche).  The chocolate brioche looked good too.  As did the homemade poptarts.  Even some of the bars looked good.

But ... the famous sticky buns somehow still remained.  I didn't have a choice, did I?
Refrigerated Tempting Treats ...
The refrigerated case however caused me some grief.  They had ... sticky bun bread pudding.  Incredible looking cream pies (coconut, lemon, and chocolate).  Moster slices of Boston cream pie (and I *was* in Boston after all!).  Trifle.

If there is something I love even more than sticky buns, it is bread pudding.  Um, and bread pudding made from sticky buns??!!!

However, it is served cold, and I like mine warm.  It isn't served with whipped cream or ice cream.  Just the bread pudding.  In the end, I asked the person taking my order which he'd pick, and he said he hadn't tried either yet, but, that it seemed to make sense to start with the basic sticky bun.  Which I suppose makes sense (although, how could I trust someone who worked there and hadn't tried their most famous item?!).  Plus, I wanted to save the bread pudding for a time when I could take it home and heat it up, and add the requisite whipped cream.
Boxed Up!
I placed my order, paid, and gave my name.

Several minutes later, a (large) box came out with my name on it.  I wasn't asked if I wanted it for there or to go, and, I actually intended to eat it there.  Luckily, they had plates and real silverware available in a self-serve area, so I just moved it to a real plate.
Sticky Sticky Bun. $3.75.
"Dark, sticky caramel and toasted pecans."

My sticky bun was ... massive.  I didn't think that box size was needed at first for *just* a sticky bun, but, well, it was.

On top was a very sweet sauce, sticky, yes.  It seemed rather honey based though?  The sweetness wasn't one I actually was particularly fond of.

There were plentiful chopped pecans, always appreciated on a sticky bun.

The dough was a bit dry.  A sweet dough, kinda dense.  Very heavy.  Very bready.  Some cinnamon between the layers.

This sticky bun was fine.  But it wasn't particularly good.  I rather suspect that part of my problem is that I had it at 7pm.  Freshness matters for sticky buns, and, the dryness in particular I think was likely attributable to that.

I guess I need to try again, earlier in the day ...
Flour Bakery + Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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