Friday, August 12, 2011

Review: Aston's Bakery in Dallas

Each and every visit to Aston's Bakery in Dallas is a sweet memory. Each time I enter the small and classic bakery I am flooded with sweet thoughts. Sweet thoughts of times past, loved ones, and just delicious treats that have tasted exactly the same since my first visit.

Aston's Bakery opened in Dallas in 1934, and by 1955 they were located in Preston Center, the location which they occupied for the next 50 years! This is the location I remember going to as a little girl, a slightly awkward middle-shcooler, and as a high-schooler during off campus lunch. As much as I loved this location as it was so heavily laden with my childhood memories, I remember it being rather dark, and I hated parking in Preston Center (if you will notice a trend in my posts...I hate parking...and I do not particularly care for driving...I would far rather live in a city where I could just walk or take the subway...alas...I live in one of the most car-centric cities in the world and I should just embrace that!). Lucky for me, Aston's relocated to Lover's Lane (the Park Cities own little Miracle Mile) to a bright and airy new location. I especially love the new location because I can walk there! If you must drive, you really can almost always find a parking spot.

Aston's focuses on hand-made baked goods with old fashioned recipes that have stood the test of time. They feature the classics, these are the treats you would make at home if you had the time. When you walk in you can choose from classic cookies, brownies, danishes, cupcakes, petite fours, and freshly baked breads. I went in right when they opened the other morning, and saw the best thing you could see in a bakery, empty display cases. Why were they empty? Because they were still pulling everything out of the ovens and arranging the deliciousness for the day to display! You can also order a variety of cakes with decorations ranging from classic to whimsical. This is a full service bakery that has been successful in a huge city for over 75 years, but with the special distinction of being family owned and run since its founding, you are overwhelmed with the feeling that you are in a small town in 1952. I love the thought that when I eat a cookie from Aston's, I am eating the same tried and true recipe from the 1930s, I think that is really unique today and I really appreciate that.

So let's focus on my favorite treat from Aston's: The Iced Gingerbread Cookie. I really do not care for the gingerbread cookies with M&Ms. I do not know why. I just really do not like the combination of gingerbread and chocolate. Anyways...back to the iced gingerbread cookies. These cookies are such a comfort, not only because they are undeniably delicious, but because I can remember the first time I ate one, and each subsequent cookie I have eaten throughout the years, is in essence, that same first cookie. Light and fluffy, rich in ginger but not too spicy, tender and slightly sweet. Perfection in gingerbread man form.

When I think of Aston's, I think of a simpler time, I think of iced gingerbread cookies, pure and simple sugar cookies, and cupcakes with the richest chocolate frosting and happy sprinkles. So...basically...when I think of Aston's...I think of sweet blissful comfort. Please go visit Aston's and enjoy a Dallas tradition and treat yourself to a special treat! do you eat your gingerbread man? 

Aston's Bakery
4342 Lover's Lane
Dallas, TX 75225
Aston's facebook page

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