April 05, 2014

Bakery/Cafe: Athan's Bakery

Athan's bakery is a cute spot in Washington square. It's great for coffee and dessert, if you're ever in the area. They are self described as a European bakery & chocolatier.

Athan's has a nice selection of baked goods, gelato, and store-made chocolates. For desserts, they have a wide selection of cookies, cakes, pastries, and other fun things like baklava. The service in this store is a little strange; none of the items are self-serve, and they usually have about 2 people behind the counter who will move around the bakery and get you your items.

Baklava & wrapped cookies
Beautiful single serve cakes and other pastries. Athans also has a selection of larger cakes available.
The single serve cakes in Athans are pretty good. Over the course of my 5 years in Boston, I've tried almost every cake available. The white chocolate ones sometimes have a strange aftertaste, but I like the idea of having single serving cute cakes.

Athan's also crafts their own chocolates!
On my most recent visit, my husband had the Bolero chocolate cake and I had a gluten-free macaroon (almond), which was sold by weight. The Bolero cake was filled with a rich chocolate mousse. Both items were tasty (I stole a bite of his). In general, I like most of the cakes here, but they're not the best ever.

Bolero cake
Unfortunately for my item, the staff member who served me took the macaroon with a piece of wax paper and put it directly on the scale, without a piece of wax paper or a plate. When his supervisor told he that he shouldn't put food on the scales directly, he shrugged and moved it to a plate instead of getting a new one (she wasn't watching so I'm not sure if she knew that he didn't just get me a new one). I didn't want to cause a scene, as the other person on staff had already tried to correct him, but to be honest, this made me a little nervous about the practices within the bakery behind the scenes. I hadn't noticed anyone cleaning the scale during my entire visit. He also didn't apologize, but based on his body language, he didn't understand why you wouldn't directly put things on the table and on the scale. I have no idea if he was a new employee and wasn't fully trained or if he was regular staff.

Anyways, I'm pretty gross so I ate it anyway, and it was delicious. The macaroons at Athan's are probably my favorite baked item in the Boston area.

1621 Beacon Street 
Brookline, MA 02446
Price: $$ 
Taste: 4/5 
Service: 2/5 
Value: 3/5
HHR Rating: I like this place, but my last visit made me feel iffy
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