If I had to choose just one affordable Edmonton eatery, my pound-for-pound champion would have to be Duchess Bake Shop, on increasingly trendy 124 Street. Yes, there is a smattering of fine quiches and open-faced sandwiches called tartines and batards, the latter topped with such things as roasted eggplant spread and hazelnuts.
But this five-year-old shop is the place to go for baked sweets and a pot of tea or French-press coffee. Even the names are decadent: apricot bourbon pecan Danish, rhubarb galette or a raspberry-studded confection aptly called l’amour.
Everything is fantastic looking and even better tasting. Indeed, I haven’t seen its equal in my extensive food forays throughout western North America. As owners Giselle, Garner and Jacob note on their website, everything is made daily from scratch, “using no mixes, no preservatives and no shortcuts.”
A nice touch is the elegantly dressed and solicitous young servers. And when was the last time you saw a barista wearing a tie?
Maybe it was a bow tie. In any event, Duchess, it’s time to take a bow, or curtsy. You’re my number one hit in all of Edmonton.
Duchess Bake Shop
10720 124 Street NW, Edmonton, Alberta
Tuesday to Friday 9 am-8 pm, Saturday 10 am-6 pm, Sunday 10 am-5 pm. Closed Monday