I love everything which has a rich culture and an intriguing history behind it. So when it comes to food talk, I love to discuss about places serving food which has got a rich history behind, but in this ever changing food scenario of the city it is hard to find such places, but yes you won’t be absolutely disappointed. Because there are still such places running in the city very successfully which were established long back, hundreds of years ago! One such place is, ‘The Bakery’ at Lalit Great Eastern Hotel, Kolkata. The hotel was established in 1840 by David Wilson who was actually a confectioner then working in Calcutta. And before he started the hotel, then called the Auckland Hotel, he first opened up and was running a successful bakery there at that same piece of land.
The Bakery was again revamped and it started operating back in 2013. Since then it has been catering successfully again to the modern day customers who are now lucky enough to taste those amazing treats to satiate their sweet tooth as well as those amazing English breakfasts. It is always like getting into a time warp when you enter the bakery and walk into that section where you still can see those old English structures and ovens; it feels like as if you are dining right inside a museum! To cut the long story short, it’s truly fascinating for a history buff like me to be able to dine at such a site!
In 2013, the bakery was opened on a Christmas eve only, that’s when I am writing this blog post today. Now again The Bakery has got back its glory days that it enjoyed hundreds of years back, it has grown in popularity, goodwill and stature. Their daily bread, cakes and confectionery items are really good. On the occasion of Christmas, they are selling the traditional plum cake, fruit cake, cookies, chocolates, etc. So, I was all excited when I received an invitation from the management just prior to the Christmas to come over and taste their amazing Christmas offerings from the bakery. I was actually accompanied by few other food bloggers. I somehow managed to reach there on time and oh boy, I was really mesmerized by those amazing bakery products they had created for this Christmas, and that fantastic ambiance and that dramatic lighting! When we went on to taste all those delicacies we were really floored. The tastes were mostly subtle, classy and soul pleasing. Also we were pleased to know that the fresh cakes which are baked every year for Christmas are first distributed among the unprivileged children and then the commercial distribution and selling them off starts. Spreading joy is hence the primary objective here and it is believed it brings good luck as well.
During this time you will always see quite a number of people standing there outside the Bakery either for a takeaway or to get a seat inside. We were also eager to taste these amazing products but we could not finish tasting them all, so they were again parceled in lovely red paper boxes. The sight of these boxes made us really happy, they somehow exuded warmth and happiness and such gift boxes are often visible on social media that reminds us of good times. Well, we really had a gala time here at the tasting session; the aura of the age old bakery was good enough to accentuate the flavors of every bakery product, it seemed.
Now coming to the bakery products which we had tasted, and those which you will get this year during the Christmas at The Bakery. You will get a varied spectrum of items like traditional Plum Cake, Plum Pudding, Christmas Fruit Cake, Star Cookies, Peanut Butter Cookies, Cinnamon Star Cookies, Vanilla Kimfel, Baser Lakrie, etc to name a few.
All these bakery products will surely impress your taste buds. I liked the fruit cake more than the plum cake though, the flavors were spot on and they were not overtly sweet either. In short, perfect stuff to go with your cup of tea or coffee. All the cookies were again perfect in their texture and properly baked. They had the correct balance of sweetness which made them almost perfect! The Baser Lakrie was something new which I tasted, they looked like typical Bengali fried chops covered with bread crumbs, but here they tasted very unique had a moist stuffing of mixed dried fruits, smooth powdered sugar coating on the outside, and overall it was pretty classy, flavorful and well appreciated.
So, before all these amazing delicacies vanish off the shelves I would suggest you to please hurry! These amazing products are still waiting for you. Saint Nick or rather Santa Claus has already departed, he will get you all the gifts but you need to buy these wonderful bakery products and plum cakes from The Bakery at the Lalit Great Eastern to complete the list of ‘must haves’ on this joyous occasion! So, wait no more, this is the right time to make a move!