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Baked Goods

Sweet Flour Bake Shop

Posted by Emily Thomas / Posted on April 17, 2009

Sweet Flour Bake ShopSweet Flour Bake Shop always smells like cookies because there are always cookies baking inside the Bloor West Village bakery, or at least whenever there are customers inside, and that's most of the time. This place lets visitors build their own cookie and then bakes it fresh: a concept that got Alyssa and I over there in a hurry this week.

Sweet Flour Bake ShopAside from the sweet cookie aroma, we were greeted by totally pleasant service, three kinds of cookie dough (original, peanut butter, and oatmeal) and tons of "add-ins" like chocolate, nuts, fruit and sprinkles (chocolate and rainbow). They also sell house-made granola, and fresh baked custom muffin tops. But cookies are obviously the main deal.

Sweet Flour Bake ShopA sign by the cash asks if I would like to have a glass of milk with my cookie, and I do (they use organic milk from Ontario). But I notice they brew Ideal Coffee, and I have a notion that I can only choose one beverage with my cookies so Alyssa and I both have a coffee ($2.25) and it's perfect with the rich desserts.

Sweet Flour Bake ShopWe make two cookies each. I choose oatmeal dough with pistachios and semi-sweet chocolate ($2.00), plus a sandwich cookie with peanut butter biscuits and chocolate ganache spread ($2.25). Alyssa gets regular dough with Snickers and toffee bits, plus a sandwich of shortbread and salted caramel spread. Our concoctions are mixed up in a bowl, flattened onto a pan and stuck inside a small oven.

Sweet Flour Bake ShopWhile our cookies baked and Alyssa snapped photos, memories of signs and sandwich boards inscribed with the "baked fresh daily" promise flashed across my mind's eye.

Thinking back to all the emphasis on fresh baked goods - having worked through my university years at a local bake shop - it's a wonder that nobody thought of this sooner.

Sweet Flour Bake ShopCookies-baked-while-you-wait is the most obvious idea ever to have never been thought of before. The cookies are done in only a few minutes and I'm more excited to get going on them than I've been about a baked good in a long time.

Sweet Flour Bake ShopThe bakery itself is homey: small and quiet and bright. There is a music studio upstairs and I can faintly here someone learning the drums, though it's not loud or persistent enough to be annoying. I actually find it quite soothing (my brother had drums... though he was loud and persistent, unfortunately). We sit by the front window and Alyssa snaps some more shots. When she moves the plates around they leave little marks of steam on the table because the cookies are so hot.

Sweet Flour Bake ShopThe greatest cookie by far is Alyssa's sandwich creation. The shortbread is light and sweet. It tastes amazing with smooth, rich and salty caramel. Her baked cookie is dense and buttery, sugary with her choice of mix-ins. The oatmeal baked up cakier than Alyssa's, with pockets of melted chocolate and crumbly pistachios. Next time I'd double the chocolate or add some fruit to give it weight. The peanut butter biscuit is crunchy, really textured and the chocolate ganache is super sweet and dark. Each cookie is a joy to bite into: warm and fresh.

Sweet Flour Bake ShopHalf way through the dessert, Alyssa and I notice we've been talking about our childhoods. This is interesting given that we're in a bakery that uses a tiny oven (easy-bake-like) and offers rainbow sprinkles.

Sweet Flour Bake Shop

Sweet Flour Bake Shop

Discussion

25 Comments

Ryan / April 17, 2009 at 04:08 pm
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This is great. It's a cookie version of Marble Slab.
Born&RaisedInTO / April 17, 2009 at 04:43 pm
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Brilliant idea!!! I may have to go back to my old 'hood for a taste :P
Wanda / April 17, 2009 at 04:44 pm
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I had a Toffee & Butterscotch Chip cookie from there yesterday. I think it was the best cookie I ever had.
Kasia / April 17, 2009 at 10:10 pm
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Oh my god, amazing idea. I'm going there asap!
Dorothy / April 17, 2009 at 10:58 pm
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They are really good cookies. I had an Oatmeal with figs and pistachios that was quite tasty. I also enjoyed the chocolate chip cookie dough shot; who doesn't like raw cookie dough. ;-)
Andrea / April 19, 2009 at 11:15 am
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Brilliant. Why didn't anyone do this sooner? Why don't restaurants do this?
/ April 19, 2009 at 05:46 pm
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kids love this store...they get to pick the dough and the ingredients of what they want and the cookie is theirs in a few minutes. and the smell is adorable....
Rasha / April 20, 2009 at 09:38 am
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This is fantastic! When is this place opening additional locations?
/ April 20, 2009 at 04:20 pm
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This place is incredible - four creations all great (other than the fact that I ate them all at the same time). Actually quite enjoyed the "ready made" cookies as well as the custom sensations. Going back asap.
Goodforyou / April 21, 2009 at 10:56 pm
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Looks yummy! I will have to check this out.
replying to a comment from Goodforyou / April 22, 2009 at 12:35 am
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tastes as good as it looks.... love the muffin tops for breakfast
Kostas / April 30, 2009 at 10:38 am
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this place is overrated at best. the line ups are too long, the staff are unorganized and STINGY. for $2.50 a cookie, i don't want 3 piece of chocolate in my cookie. I've been there several times, and the staff hardly put in a good about of mix-ins, one time i had snickers in my cookie, and the guy didnt even mix it in properly so that all the chocolate ended up being burnt off the edges. not to mention, the cookies are undercooked. people get so frustrated with the lines they end up just buying a large container of cookie dough, which is highway robbery- $14, are you serious? the cookies aren't that great, everyone's mother can definitely make better. when you think about it, they sell a little ice cream scoop-full of dough for 75 cents, the same amount they give in your cookie, so why the hell is it $2.50 when i'm virtually getting no mix-ins that are worth the difference? This bakery is in dire need of a reality check.
kostas / April 30, 2009 at 10:40 am
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oh, if you choose to get a white macademia white chocolate cookie, go to starbucks instead. its way better. i wish i was kidding too.
Anon / May 2, 2009 at 06:57 pm
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The white chocolate macadamia cookies at starbucks are frozen for weeks before arriving in store and have numerous stabilizers and preservatives. Go ahead, feed that to your kids if you want. I prefer the more natural version for my kids.
To Anon / May 14, 2009 at 11:28 am
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Hey Anon,

If you want to feed your kids some natural cookies, why dont you get off your ass and make them yourself??
Wanda / June 3, 2009 at 08:53 am
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I love this place! The line ups can be long, but there is often a little sample plate to tide the hungry grumps over. I've been there several times and never noticed stingy amount of toppings, and always mixed well. The staff has been always friendly and enthusiastic; who couldn't be, they're making delish creations all day long? Glad you're staying at Starbucks buddy, meanwhile I'll be enjoying my favorite cookie - Butterscotch Toffee, and it will be still warm and gooey when I get it.
Jo replying to a comment from To Anon / July 26, 2009 at 10:26 am
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Good Point!!!
Lou / July 23, 2010 at 01:22 am
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@Kostas: I can tell you that the same small dough shot is definitely not the same size as the cookie that you get for $2.50. A dough shot is approx 25g, the cookie that you get is approx 70g of dough, approx 30g of toppings. You can tell this by the colour of the handle of the ice cream scoop that they use. Any more toppings and your cookie wouldn't bake, nor would the toppings be incorporated easily. As for your poor snickers, well...would you rather they cut them up smaller for you?

SF actually uses ingredients that you can find in your own pantry. Flour, sugar, baking soda/powder, BUTTER, eggs, etc. No preservatives, conditioners, or any crap. They're pretty much are how your mother used to make, or didn't your mother like you very much?

Why does Anon have to bake when SF has the cookies ready to go, enjoyable, without the clean-up, and is also able to have some organic milk or specialty coffee while gettin the kids and themselves active by taking a stroll through Bloor W Village? Sounds much more pleasant than slaving away in a hot kitchen with the oven on when the weather is hovering around 30c.

Just a thought...or two.
Anon / July 23, 2010 at 01:55 pm
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I'm actuallky heading to sweet flour on the weekend for the first time!

I'm very curious how to know how they manage to bake cookies in just 2 mins? Is it higher temperature or a change in ingredients of some type?
Ally / April 26, 2011 at 10:54 am
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Mmm that salted caramel looks good...when I went I tried the muffin top and a pretzel+choc chip cookie. Pretzels in baked goods are the bomb!
Erica / July 14, 2012 at 02:38 pm
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I'm sitting at sweet flour right now with chocolate ganache on my shirt and half my cookie on the ground. I will not be coming here again. My oatmeal cookie was dry, doughy, and crumbly. I waited for it to cool off and it still fell apart. The peanut butter dough is bland, and the regular needs water or milk to wash it down--and not in a good way. What a shame, it's a cute place.
BrushedOffCustomer / March 4, 2013 at 11:23 am
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Great concept and great product. Watch out though, they will charge you tax if you buy 6 or more squares even though they are not supposed to. I asked they remove it and was relayed a message from the manager that since they do not have pricing for 6 squares they will charge tax. Canada's Ministry of Finance says otherwise: http://goo.gl/KEzwq

"customers who buy more than five pastries, with or without beverages, are not required to pay RST on the baked goods. When six or more pastries are sold, the baked goods qualify for exemption as food products."
Gabby / June 11, 2013 at 10:08 pm
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Love love love this place! It's a super awesome idea and I'm surprised more places like this don't exist! Some might find the prices a bit high, but I'd argue that it's well worth it! ++Recommend: Regular dough with potato chips and snickers OR Regular dough with white chocolate, dried cranberries and pistachios WITH a cold glass of organic milk!
ENM / July 19, 2013 at 02:04 pm
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blogTO comments are really entertaining.
Walter / January 28, 2014 at 08:52 pm
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Best cookie in town

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