Sunday, April 27, 2014

West Village Cafe Tour

Last week on a beautiful brisk Thursday morning, my friends and I decided to embark on a journey to explore cafes around Manhattan. We started with a list of over 20 locations, ready and eager to see what we discover. Our journey started out at a cute Parisian cafe, Mille- Feuille Cafe, that offered a variety of sandwiches and pastries. The seating was close and intimate, the ambiance was warm and friendly, and the food was good enough to eat. Unfortunately, the music playing in the background and the conversations exchanged between the servers, threw the tranquil balance off. The sandwiches were nothing out of the ordinary. In a way, it reminded me of airplane food since it was stored in the fridge and served cold, and chewing on a cold baguette could only bring you so far. For the future, I would probably opt for a quiche or a croissant. The mille-feuille, which is composed of three layers of flaky dough laced with a thick layer of cream in between each layer, was beyond delicate. After the first bite, it no longer held its shape and the cream took most of the attention. My passion fruit raspberry tart was refreshing and had a nice hint of raspberry taste to complement the tanginess of the passion fruit. The only downfall was that the decor on the tart, which I thought and hoped was a piece of chocolate or sugar, was actually a piece of cardboard.

We then ventured on to try other baked goods. Our first quick stop was a small cookie shop called insomnia cookies. I'm not quite sure why it was named insomnia cookies and I didn't really get the chance to ask. The servers were busy preparing a large order and the only thing they had available for purchase was their chocolate chip cookie. It was nice that the cookies were served warm and you know that they were baked fresh every day. However, it was a bit too soft and not chewy enough for my liking.

The next stop was Molly's Cupcakes. The shop was set up like an elementary classroom, with board games on shelves and classroom desks. Apparently the owner was inspired by his teacher who used to bring cupcakes into class to share. We tried the blueberry cheesecake cupcake, which had a layer of cheesecake on top of a vanilla cake. I would suggest that instead of eating the cake layer by layer, it is best if the layers are consumed together, as a cupcake should be consumed. This way, you get the textures and tastes of the two different cakes.

Our last main stop was a shop called Milk & Cookies. This place offered a large selection of cookies and a variety of different desserts. Their drink menu is limited to mainly tea and coffee and there is only one variety of milk. We tried a variety of different cookies, which were mostly pretty good. We were able to each find our favorites, for me it was the bacon chocolate chip. While we enjoyed our cookies in the shop, we were surprised by several different food tours. Groups of people would usher in and out of this little shop with their guides like a group of ducks. The tour guide would give their briefing while everyone nibbled on their cookies. It was a novel experience, and anyone who would like to gawk at the New York tour scene may want to come here to try their luck.

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