We are still enjoying all the goodies I brought back from Sugar Pine Bake Shop 3 days ago. This has got to be a tough business to succeed with, since I saw at least 3 other “sweets” shops in the area. I chose this one because the excellent breads I had while dining at one of Big Bear’s best fine dining restaurants (Ooh La La) were made here at Sugar Pine.
Sugar Pine is easy to find just west of “the Village” on Big Bear Boulevard (Highway 18). It’s a free-standing building with a good sign out front: the word “BAKERY” is posted in big, brown letters on a pink background. The sales area is rather small with only two small display cases, but this is Big Bear and not downtown Manhattan. There is a highboy for 2-3 people to sit and enjoy a cup and a treat. This isn’t a Starbucks, so forget the laptop and don’t plan to spend a few hours here updating your Facebook page.
We came in and mentioned how we came to be at Sugar Pine. Overhearing our conversation about Ooh La La, Owner/Chef Trish Gordan came out to chat with us. Trish was very interested in our thoughts about her client and had similar opinions about them. We mentioned how much we liked the breads, but she was out of fresh walnut/raisin bread. She went into the back and found a loaf in the freezer and simply gave it to us. (I just finished a couple of slices for breakfast!)
We also bought several other selections including “Hoosier Pie,” which was a creamy concoction (reminiscent of rice pudding in flavor) on a crumble crust. I’m always eager to taste things I can’t get anywhere else I know of! The Macaroon brownie was a fine piece, both visually and in my mouth; probably nasty on my waistline, though! The apple thing (I forget their name for it, but it is a firm cobble/pie served in a square like the Brownie) tasted fresh (meaning naturally sweet, not over-sugared) and was lightly spiced. The blueberry scone was properly heavy and rib-clinging. I liked that scone a lot, the texture was great.
Portion sizes are large, considering my ability to eat sweets, but I find them quite proper and a good value. I just have to eat a selection over a few days or share it!
This may be a pretty long review for such a tiny place, but that should serve as sign that it was worth my time to visit and worth my time to write about it.
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