By Rolston Fox
Ok, I confess…I’m a pastry addict. I can’t resist a bakery. The other day I decided to cut through the Hyde Park area in North Austin and stumbled onto a gem. I couldn’t believe my eyes, or maybe it was my ears. Was the bakery quacking at me?
For me, this was the discovery of the century, but the reality was that Quacks has been in Austin since 1983. Some Austinites remember it when it was “Captain Quackenbushes” on the Drag. The owner, Art Silver, moved Quacks to 43rd Street in 1998 where it’s been a neighborhood bakery ever since.
How good could this place really be? After all, I’ve been seriously disappointed with “bakeries” before. Still, I couldn’t wait.
I wasn’t craving anything specific but I’m a sucker for chocolate. When I saw the chocolate cupcake with the raspberry icing piped about an inch high, I was sold. I know, I know…”you can get cupcakes anywhere,” but I was torn between a huge piece of chocolate pecan pie and the cupcake. Since this was my first time visiting, I decided to stick to the basics. My logic was that if they can’t bake a cupcake, then I’d be wasting my time with the pie. I’m sure that philosophy is borderline ridiculous but it works for me.
I wasn’t disappointed. The cake was heavy and moist, and the light, Swiss buttercream frosting with chocolate drizzle, had a subtle raspberry flavor. All of the pastries are baked in-house and made from scratch. You can taste the quality. To me, the casual diner, that usually means expensive, but at $2.99, this was a STEAL!
I’m sad to admit that I couldn’t finish it. I made the mistake of brining the rest home for my kids and never had a second chance at it. Damn monsters! I should have known better. On the upside, I have a justifiable reason to go back. I plan to take advantage of that excuse very soon!