Friday, January 28, 2011

Magnolia? Joan's? Magnolia? Joan's?

In case you are wondering, I am a fiend. A bakery obsessed, menace to the blogosphere. I have a job that forces me to traverse the city as I hunt for the "perfect" item to use on one of my sets. As it happens, I am currently decorating a cooking show for Fox. One of our sets is a Whole Foods styled "shoppe". It is a fun environment to dress but I have been having a bit of a block on a few finishing touches. Naturally, I need to do lots of research in high-end bakeries. (A girl's work is never done). So I hopped into my minivan and headed straight to West Hollywood's Third Street. Home of Joan's on Third and now, Magnolia Bakery's west coast outpost. Both are on the same block. Both have their own alluring, caloric temptations. Joan's is foodie's dream. Many types of cuisine, cooked perfectly, albeit quite expensive. AND they have one of the most fabulous bakeries and cappucino bars in town. If you cannot find something to eat here, I am worried about you.

Last year, the long awaited Magnolia Bakery opened across the street. If you have ever been to the original NYC location you would almost not believe that the two stores are related. One is a quaint little bakery, while the other is a mammoth cupcacke producing factory. But the cupcakes and the puddings are enough to send you to the moon (in a good way). Worth every single gut-expanding, calorie. My favorites are the caramel cupcake and the banana pudding.

As far as Joan's is concerned, I am moderately addicted to their meringue cookies. Particularly the ones with the chocolate and coconut. And in the summer, I have been known to consume a cream puff... or two.

Whenever I turn onto Third Street, I turn into a junkie. Am I hungry? Do I have time to stop? Where should I go? One day, I even followed Jeff Goldbloom and his girlfriend as they held hands, walking down the street. Would they stop at Joan's? Maybe get a little omelet and a croissant? Nope. Well they must be going to Magnolia? Who can refuse their tasty brownies?Nope. They were just walking. And I realized that maybe, I should consider a 12 step program. Especially because I seem to project my desires onto complete strangers who also happen to be celebrities.

In any case, if someone held a gun to my head and forced me to chose between the two I think that I would have to go with Joan's. But I am happy to have to luxury of being able to have two options. Because there are times for cream puffs and there are times for good old fashioned vanilla cupcakes with chocolate frosting!

And if you also like things that are sweet on the eyes, I hear that Alexander SkarsgÄrd has been known to frequent Joan's from time to time.