Showing Local Business Some Love

Raquel StecherAbout Me
Blogger at Thoughtful Eating and Vintage Brand New. Please add my to your circles.

I spent most of today basking in the glorious sunshine and supporting some local businesses. I cannot talk enough about how important it is to support your local, independent businesses. Big corporations and chains don't excel in quality, variety and service like they do. Local indies care about the communities they are part of and are always reaching out to them. I'm lucky to live in an area with so many great local indies and a community that really supports them.

My first stop today was Johnny D's in Davis Square (Cambridge, MA). On Saturday and Sunday mornings they have excellent Jazz Brunch, you get to hear live music and eat some amazing and unique brunch dishes. It's worth going there regularly just for their weekly specials. This morning, I had their Portabella Mushroom, Scallion and Swiss omelet. It was quite delicious and the scallions really gave the omelet a kick.

I had read on about the Ritz-Carlton (Boston, MA) having Cupcake Tea. I really wanted to go but they had required 24 hour + advance reservation. The thought of eating delectable cupcakes lingered in my brain all morning and I decided to be adventurous, go elsewhere and have a cupcake lunch. My next stop was Sweet Cupcakes in Harvard Square (Cambridge, MA).

Their selection of full-sized and miniature cupcakes on display was enough to make any customer drool. After some considerable ogling, I decided on two cupcakes and made my way to another local business for some coffee.

Just down the street is Crema Cafe (Cambridge, MA), a little coffee shop that was a welcome change from the Au Bon Pain that was there before. They have great coffee and an eclectic selection of sandwiches, salads, pastries and quiches. They even have soda in glass bottles! I picked up a small half-decaf, half-caf coffee and headed outside.

I love the simplicity of both the cupcake box and the coffee to-go cup. There is something about minimalism that is truly decadent.

I sat outside in the gorgeous weather and had my coffee and cupcakes. I got a Boston Cream Cupcake which was chiffon cake, with a pastry cream center and chocolate ganache with a tiny dot of cherry-flavored frosting to top it all off. It was light and delicious and not overpoweringly sweet. The Lemon-Raspberry Cupcake was a lot denser, with delicious sweet and tart lemon cake, a raspberry jam center, a generous heaping of frosting and a raspberry on top. It was so decadent that I couldn't finish the whole thing. Lucky for me, there were some sparrows hanging around that were willing to help me out.

After my cupcake lunch, I headed to the See New England Festival held in City Hall Plaza (Boston, MA). Local organizations set up booths to encourage folks to shop, travel and eat in New England. A local website called it the "Staycation Festival".

My top favorite local business, Wilson Farms (Lexington, MA), was one of the sponsors of the event and had a nice booth set-up. They were promoting their upcoming Strawberry festival with fresh and chocolate-dipped strawberries. They also had some of their produce and baked goods for sale.

And while this isn't food related, I thought I'd mention that the festival had live music including the URO (Ultrasonic Rock Orchestra). I've seen them perform before and am always impressed by the show they put on. It's a full rock orchestra doing electric covers of songs by the Beatles, Queen, David Bowie and Led Zepplin. They are a local group of musicians who are super-talented and put on a great show.

Now I'm left with the good feeling that I helped support some great local business!


Jonas Nordin said...

Yay! Local businesses often need all the support they can get. Being from a family who ran a local business for some 20 years I can tell that customers like Raquelle are worth their weight i gold.

Casey said...

A cupcake shop! How thrilling! I can just taste how good they are. I'm a big fan of Boston Creme Pie. In fact, thinking about it is really making me want to make one!

Raquelle said...

Thanks Jonas!

Casey - I want your Boston Creme pie recipe! I can't believe people actually make it at home.

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