Talking lost, this place exists on what, I am sure, was once a much more rumbling stretch of Little Italy. Now, nearly the entire nearby vicinity has been given over to hospitals. And on Chowhound, it seems totally overlooked as well.
Ferarra Pastries is a very old time pastry shop on the far end of the Taylor Street area, well past all of the resturants. They offer all the usual neopolitan specialities. Think flaky pastries, excessive use of citron, canoli filing all over the place and tons of cookies.
Today, Ms. VI and I shared a sfogliatelle and a cassata slice. Ms. VI is very, very picky about her sfog's, insisting this is something Chicago fails at. Maybe today changed her mind. The pastry itself was a bit on small side and undusted with sugar, so she was hesitant. Still, I persisted we get it. Sfogliatelle means something like thousand layers, and the great ones combine a really good cheese strudel with a really good cheese danish. Today's pastry possessed the requisite multi-layeredness, and each layer possessed a mixture of total crunch and eslastic, buttery portions. The filling contained a very thick pastry creme perfumed with citron. I could have eaten three!
The casata was good if a bit this side of fresh, the top cracking with the weight of prior day's baking.
Ferrara shares a name with an equally old fashioned Neopolitan pastry shop in New York. Perhaps the goods compete, but Chicago's shop lacks the wonderful marble and zinc fixtures still there in little italy. Also, the missing is the big old brass espresso maker. This stuff begs for a decent accompiment. Still, take that trip past everything else on Taylor for some really great pastries.
2210 W. Taylor
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