Friday, July 20, 2012

Parcha Sweets Field Trip

Parcha Sweets has been in Broad Ripple since 2010, owned by two sisters from Puerto Rico. One of the sisters, Marian Mulero, is a pastry chef, who graduated from a Le Cordon Bleu Academy in Orlando,Florida. The bakery is housed in a former pizza establishment and is located on 62nd St. My first encounter with Parcha Sweets was at the Broad Ripple farmer’s market. I did not give it much notice since my two favorite bakery vendors, Rene’s Bakery and Circle City Sweets are also selling their scrumptious fares there. There is also Scholar’s Inn Bakehouse to consider.

Yesterday, my daughter took a summer camp field trip to Parcha Sweets as part of her cooking class. She was extremely excited since she had heard they have very good cupcakes. She was not sure if they would get to help make the pastries but she was definitely up for sampling! Imagine my disappointment and, especially hers, when all they did was file through the small bakery. Not even a cookie! After hearing this, we immediately drove to the bakery after class and I let her pick out a treat.

There were predominantly cupcakes displayed of many colors and flavors, all with elaborate icings. In the bottom of the case were a myriad of cake pops. In another case were a few high-brow pastries, some quite beautiful,  including tres leche. We picked out a wedding cake cupcake and birthday cake cupcake and my toddler wanted a cake pop. I also had to try the tres leche with its promised soaked sponge cake in four different milks and its marshmallow fluff topping. My toddler would not leave the premises until he had had his treat. He easily found a child’s size chair and table to claim. The seating was fun and cramped. I decided to give him half of his cake pop but it was like cutting into a brick due to its hard coating. Inside was a doughy brown middle whose flavor I could not deduce except that it was beyond sweet! Whew! Which brings me to my next point. Why in America have we found cake pops and cupcakes with inch-thick icings to be so enticing? Are there any adults present?? This seems to be so trendy and hopefully, it will disappear in a few years. Even for my children, I do not wish for them to gorge on extremely sweet balls that are enticingly called cake pops. What is more depressing is that such a seemingly talented chef has most of her case filled with these trendy and overly sweet and rich items. We have enough cupcake bakeries in this town! Enough of my displeasure about the current dessert food scene.

The birthday cake cupcake was comprised of this strange brown cake with unidentifiable flavor. Of all the items, the wedding cupcake was the best and truly tasted like a wedding cake with its strong almond undertones and good texture– again way too much icing but very nice flavors. We sampled the tres leche later as an entire family. I stuck a spoon into the foil ramekin and found almost all liquid and no cake! I know the cake should be soaked with its milks but in this particular case the cake was not perceivable. Hmmm. Did it even get baked? Sadly, a huge disappointment. I called the establishment later in the day and complained about the tres leche and was met with a heart-felt apology and the offer of a gift card. I will give this place another try even though I was not impressed with their treatment of a class of small children on a field trip and their baked goods. Why another try? Because I like the idea of this place and that it is a local effort by two sisters, one well-trained.  (Well Corrin and I did try it again the following day this time purchasing more cupcakes and a petite cherry pie. The pie was average and the cupcakes good but too sweet and rich. My husband was given the leftovers and had similar complaints made independent of our comments. We all found the cake portion of the cupcakes to be dry and dense. The exception was the Smores cupcake.)

Atmosphere – 6
Service – 8
Presentation – 10
Food – 5-6
Price – 7 (almost everything was $2.99 each)
Overall - 6

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