Mike’s Pastry: Cannolis that dreams are made of
300 Hanover St, Boston, MA
While wandering around Boston, we kept seeing people carrying around boxes, big and small labeled “Mike’s Pastry.” We even joked that Mike’s Pastry could have commissioned people to carry around their boxes as a form of advertisement. But after the 10th box we saw, it peaked our interest and we had to check it out.
We finally found some time on Saturday night to visit Mike’s Pastry. I was worried that the display cases would be half empty with baked goods and all the popular items would be gone since by the time we got to the North End, it was nearing 9:30 pm. Mike’s Pastry is located in Boston’s North End, also known as Little Italy since many Italian coffee shops, bakeries and pizzerias have set up shop in the neighbourhood. Even at 9:30 pm on Saturday, the neighbourhood was buzzing with activity, lots of pedestrians walking around and the streets were packed with cars. I have no idea how anyone can parallel park on these narrow streets as the parked cars were literally bumper to bumper.
When we pulled up to Mike’s Pastry, we were shocked to find the line up going out the door at 9:30 pm no less! And to our disappointment, there was no parking (no surprise in Boston) so my husband had to circle the block with the car as my brother and I dashed in to buy our pastries.
There was a long line coming out the door, but we soon found out that the so-called line was only a disorganized crowd so we muscled our way up front. There were still fresh pastries being baked up and they even went to the back to fetch our peanut butter and hazelnut cannolis. We also ordered a pistachio cannoli and being major Seinfeld fans, we had to get the black and white cookie.
Finally, we understood why everyone was carrying around the Mike’s Pastry boxes – there simply wasn’t any room to eat inside the bakery, the place was always bustling with customers!
We took our goodies back to the hotel to feast. As soon as we took our first bite, we understood why Mike’s Pastry was so popular. The cannolis were incredibly delicious, fresh, sweet and rich; these are desserts that dreams are made of. My favourite cannoli was definitely the peanut butter, subtle in favour and the cream was both fluffy and decadent like biting into a sweet cloud.
The hazelnut cannoli was right up there with the peanut butter, nutty and rich; it tasted faintly of nutella but mostly it made me think of European cafes and delicate sweets.
The pistachio cannoli was equally delicious, lots of fluffy cream that oozed out the end of the cannoli when I took a bite, and the cannoli shell was crispy and buttery and flaky.
We were disappointed by the black and white cookie which we always imagined as a sugar cookie covered in frosting ever since we watched the episode of Seinfeld when Jerry bought the cookie at a New York bakery. The black and white cookie from Mike’s Pastry turned out to be more of a small cake rather than a hard cookie. Maybe black and white cookies is more of a New York thing.
I would gladly line up at Mike’s Pastry again for more cannolis. Those things are worth the calories.