Over the Fourth of July week/end, as you’re paying a visit to The Tall Ship Festival at Canalside, be sure to make a point to stop by Bakery 55, located at the back end of Labatt’s Draft Room. You can also access the bakery from Illinois Street – the rear of the Draft Room building, where you will find a large conjoined patio with lawn games.
During a recent visit to Bakery 55, I entered via the patio way, and found myself walking into a super quaint baking operation. To the right were a couple of small tables to sit and eat, flanked by built-in cupboards willed with an assortment of baking paraphernalia. To my left was the sizable baking operation, with a couple of bakers running about fulfilling orders. Bakery 55 is not the largest bakery around, but it does manage to handle a significant output – not only does the operation have to furnish for the retail side of the business, it also has to accommodate the sprawling Draft Room.
As I walked around the counter, I came across a number of counter displays and baking racks, featuring a tantalizing assortment of baked goods. There were cinnamon rolls, strawberry rhubarb crostatas, loaves of fresh bread (made daily), rolls, banana Nutella muffins, tarts, veggie and sausage quiche, English muffins, double fudge brownies, rocky road crisps, and even salads-to-go. I chose to order a barbecue chicken bialy – the woman behind the counter suggested that the bialy is best when heated up, so I heeded her advice. A couple of minutes later I was walking out the door with a toasty bialy in my hand.
As I sat on a bench on the patio, I watched a couple playing cornhole, and a handful of other lawn games. Customers were coming and going from the bakery at a steady clip, which was nice to see.
After finishing up my bialy, I went back inside Bakery 55 once last time, to see what sort of coffee drinks they were serving up. I found an overhead board that listed everything from hot cocoa to café mocha. Another sign clued me into the type of coffee that they were brewing – La Colombe, which is headquartered in Philadelphia.
With each new incremental advancement in The Cobblestone District and Canalside, there are more reasons to visit… and stick around longer. Bakery 55 is a sweet addition to the line-up of culinary offerings that have sprung up in the area. Combined with the Draft Room, this is a solid destination in Downtown Buffalo that should not be overlooked.