Detroit Sure Bakes A Great Dessert

Altered from my original post in The Commoner Magazine this fall with more sass and  Socials information.

Close your eyes and think about what you know about Detroit. Let me guess- you think of cars, Motown, sports, or crime, right? But not food? Well, let’s change that. It’s time to be introduced to some of the greatest bakeries and cupcakeries that Metro-Detroit has to offer. Each one is a local business, mostly female owned and so chock full of goodness that your teeth will hurt just by reading this.
Chocolate salted caramel cupcake from Union General.

Read on to find out some of my personal favorites in the Metro-Detroit bakery realm; maybe it can inspire you to think out of the box as well.
Donut Bar + Coffee- What better way to start your journey than a beautiful array of donuts, coffee or even a “donut shake”? Donut Bar + Coffee is one of those exclusive style of places that keep popping up all over Metro-Detroit. They tell you every day, once the donuts are gone, we’re closed. They do well with social media, which is fun and drool-inducing by posting flavors of the day like caramel apple, Perfect Pair (coffee and Biscoff), chicken and waffles, cotton candy and Fruity Pebbles. They use flavor combos that are innovative, some classic, and some truly outrageous; and every day is different! The one rub with Donut Bar is that they ripen like avocados because everything is so fresh in making them- You have to eat them day of or store them airtight ASAP to retain freshness. If you leave them overnight in the box they will harden. 

Love+Buttercream- I have gone here for many a’holiday. L&B has been voted the best for a reason and I always come here when I’m on their side of town. The buttercream here is the tops- not too sweet or oily like a few others (that aren't listed here as a top dessertery). I am a French macaron freak and buy at least one of every flavor when I go. It's an easy way to blow a pay check, let me tell you. Their baked goods are always a hit and the selection so grand that you can order an entire box full and still not try it all. Their goods are all baked from scratch using local, organic and season ingredients because they value community as well as taste. They also offer classes for kids and adults in treatmaking, cookie painting and more.  Plus their shop is completely Instagram worthy!

Union General Store- I went to a theatre fundraiser that hired Union as caterer and I jest not, I said their French macarons were the best thing I have ever eaten. That’s a high compliment indeed! Since then I was a little nervous to make the drive to Clarkston just in case it was only a really good day and their part; basically I was afraid of being disappointed. But I was absolutely not. I of course ate my way through their macaron flavors (my previous opinion still stands)  but also picked up their pumpkin pie cupcake, a “how ‘bout them apples” caramel apple cupcake and a “Veruca Salt” a rich chocolate and salted caramel cupcake. They’re more on the sweet side, but worth the trip. Event your most curmudgeon of family members can find something of delight from their selection for a party.

Blu Kitchen- Though Blu Kitchen specializes in, you guessed it, French macarons, they also do flavor after flavor of handcrafted small batch marshmallows, hot cocoa mix sets and other delicious baked goods. Adina started Blu Kitchen as a Farmer’s Market staple a few years back before moving on to pop-ups anywhere possible. I attended my first pop-up of hers during a snowstorm about two years ago where I waited in line for an hour outside of a children’s daycare and the crowd proved to be too much. She was sold out before we even got close! It's not secret why. Since that day she started selling in Eastern Market  in the Detroit Mercantile shop once a month or so. Eventually she graduated up and Blu Kitchen found a permanent home in Plymouth but is still only open on weekends. It basically still runs like a pop-up with regular hours but limited quantities of each item and when it’s gone the doors close. If you intend to visit this shop, go early and bring your sweet tooth!

Westview Orchards Winery- The winery is gorgeous, fun for parties and has a wonderful donut flight for snacking on. It seem so simple, a flight of three donuts of your choosing, but let me tell you- Katrina does not skimp on toppings for these bad boys! They also have delish handpies in a few flavors- I love their peach and berry pies best, which are sweet enough for a dessert but not overly sweet so that they make a good breakfast as well. It's my favorite part of Friday nights when I go play trivia in "the barn". Their bakery offers fresh ciders, an amazing bread selection like cheddar jalapeno bread, hand poured candy apples, more donuts, whole pies and so much more. They make their own wines, sangrias and hard ciders to compliment any order and would be a welcome addition to any gathering.  It’s a seasonal favorite for the atmosphere, corn maze and baby goats, but Westview has more to offer than traditional Fall faves for an orchard. The good part is that WOW is open all year round with seasonal treats a’plenty to eat there and take home- if they make it that far.

Garrido’s Bistro and Pastry- As much as I adore Garrido’s, it’s not really the kind of place where you can take your desserts home to share. There are a few items from their Venezuelan inspired menu that can actually be taken home, like all normal restaurants which are worth mentioning, I guess, but what adds Garrido’s to a dessert list is their biggest draw- both in size and sales- their “Extreme Shakes and Over The Top Hot Chocolates”! Vanessa is the champion Tetris player with the way she can sculpt these dessert masterpieces. Since their start in 2015 they have been featured on the Travel Channel, PBS, Food Network and all over Dettroit News and Morning show networks. If you get there at a lucky time Vanessa will create your drink right in front of you and pause appropriately for video making moments, which helps make this place extra special. The staff understands that they are putting on a show with their amazing food and desserts, and they’re cool with it. It’s a chocolate spectacle worth sharing with someone, but maybe is not enough to bring one home for the whole family this season!

Dollars to doughnuts that you'll find something to love here. All in all, Detroiters love sweets, much like everyone else! Our current crazes are, very obviously, macarons and donuts but that doesn’t mean you can’t find a 6 layered cake or croquembouche around town.

Have you ever seen such deliciousness in one place? Did I miss anything? Let me know below and I will create a new dessert tour and try out your recommendations soon.

As always, be kind to one another. #NewYearSameMe

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Aoibhneas (thats'a me!)
Donut Bar +Coffee
Union General Store
The Blu Kitchen
Westview Winery
Garrido's Bistro

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  1. Some of these desserts look insane! I'm from the UK so admittedly I don't know anything about Detroit but I know I'd love to go and try all of these!


  2. I need to go to the Garrido place. The dessert looks amazing and delicious. If I’m ever in Detroit, I’m definitely going here!!

  3. I’m drooling! I love wine and macarons. If I ever get to Detroit I know where to go !

  4. Wow, those looks amazing! I may go to Detroit just for the desserts!!

  5. Wow, I had no idea Detroit had such a great food scene! I definitely need to check it out!

  6. I would never have guessed Detroit as a hub for macarons! That's crazy good news. Time for a trip across the border for this Canuck

  7. I love a good dessert, Detroit will definitely be added to my places to visit when in the United States!


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