Seattleites, I hope you’ve already been to Ballard’s new gem, Bouteloua Bakery. If I didn’t live a loooong bus ride away I would be there…I dunno, daily? I love this place. If you haven’t been, or if you’re planning a trip to Seattle, I strongly encourage pushing this little shop high on your list.
Consider my first visit:
See how they don’t overdo the frosting and instead go for a nice, smooth ganache? See how perfect that vanilla sugar cookie is that got even this chocolate fiend to love it? And the chocolate-chip cookies hiding underneath are just the right soft chewiness.
The only cheesecake I consistently like is the raw variety, which tastes nothing like traditional cheesecake, which is why I like it. But my partner in crime is a big fan of traditional cheesecake (and is not vegan) and declared the berry-covered slice you see in the background to be excellent.
My second visit was squeezed in on a very busy day because I couldn’t wait any longer to have some of their pain au chocolat, made with Seattle’s own Theo chocolate:
I will be back for more of that as well. It may look a little skimpy on the chocolate, but Theo’s so intense it really doesn’t need more than that. The croissant is just what it should be–flaky and tender and fresh–and makes me eager to try one of their savory ones.
Bouteloua also caters to gluten-free folks, and though I have not yet tried any of their gluten-free offerings, my friend who also does her own gluten-free baking raved about what they make. And today, Seattle Weekly blogger Rose Tosti posted an enthusiastic review from a non-vegan, gluten-free perspective. I got a kick out of the author’s frustration about the common confusion about gluten-free diets and vegan ones, since I get asked all the time if I can eat “flour.”
The staff is friendly and helpful, the atmosphere is charming (and they have sidewalk seating for good weather), and the food is so good you should share it with your non-vegan friends and colleagues to forever banish that “vegan baked goods are made of bark” taunt.