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Fast Foodie

Fast Foodie: The Cakery Bakery and Café

Photo: Erik Gustafson, License: N/A

Erik Gustafson

An astonishing chicken noodle soup from Cakery Bakery and Café.

The ghosts of tenants past must surely haunt the two, adjacent downtown properties abandoned by Andrew Weissman in his move to Pearl. Gwendolyn has purged any spirits Le Rêve left behind by becoming more virtuous than thou (more power to them, of course). The Cakery Bakery seems to be dealing with Sandbar's spiritual residue by professing good intentions. Good try, but not quite good enough. It should be said at the outset, however, that CB's brownies — not too tricked out, ask for a corner piece — are exemplary. They have just the right texture and no need for nuts. (The orange brownie, really more like a whitey, is way too sweet for me, on the other hand.) Close on their heels is a chicken noodle soup that astonishes (yes, I mean that) with both its genuineness and its depth of flavor; it puts all the canned chunkies to shame.

I'm not so enthusiastic about the sandwiches. The water-packed albacore Adam tuna salad on whole wheat isn't saved by "secret seasonings"; it's not a bad attempt but is fairly loose in texture and simply doesn't distinguish itself from the rest of the pack — water or otherwise. I did have high hopes for the Cilantro Panini (I'm going to say this one more time: Panini is plural, panino is singular, paninis is superfluous), but it wasn't available the day I asked for it. I settled for Doreen's Favorite.

With apologies to Doreen, this combination strikes me as misbegotten. The herb-roasted turkey breast is fine, but put together with cream cheese and mayo in a heated press what you get is squoosh. And the addition of fruits, which might be tolerated in a pristine tea sandwich, is frankly weird. I picked apple slices as being less offensive than strawberries or blueberries, but elected to remove them in favor of some serviceable marinated cucumber slices meant as an accompaniment. It's all perfectly pressed, however, so taking advantage of the build-your-own category is an option.

Other options at CB include the expected selection of salads, among which the Tuscan white bean and the panzanella stand out. At least their intentions sound good.

The Cakery Bakery and Café

152 E Pecan
(210) 226-2253

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