Homage to those back from abroad not ready for America…

Posted on January 28, 2010 by


By: Billie Hirsch

Upon entering Tatte Fine Cookies & Cakes, I instantaneously peered downward at my feet. No ruby red Mary Janes or compact canine, but, Toto…I have a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.

With a hint of weathered Victorian elegance and décor that is rustic and simple, I now resided in some foreign love affair somewhere amidst Parisian cobblestone and Mediterranean Tel Aviv.

Tatte, a Hebrew term of endearment for which the owner Tzurit Or holds close to her heart, is a café sharing both Parisian and Israeli traits as well as ingredients. Or exhibits such a dedication and zeal that most store owners embody as lackluster enthusiasm after the excitement of new responsibility and publicity subsides.

From the timeworn chalkboards to hanging light fixtures, everything in the store looks like it was found in an antique store specially collected for Or’s liking; and the aroma of freshly baked brioche, both sweet and savory consumes the cozy brasserie consisting of a mere four metal tables for an unabridged intimacy is more than enough to lure any food connoisseur in for promising satisfaction.

Finally, a place to sip and be kind to the environment simultaneously—this may be my only chance at a mere peripheral jab of Starbucks culture, and I’ll take what I can get. The ceramic mugs and dishware at Tatte are adorned with floral speckling, trimmed with gold, and, if you’re feeling lavish, filled with homemade Belgian hot chocolate.

Pecan studded nut pies look as though someone must have spent a lifetime placing each kernel in its designated position, and the caramel drizzling throughout leaves absolutely nothing more to be desired.

Although the cakes run a bit pricey—$35 to $50 for the decadent chocolate mousse and rich cheesecake adorned with blankets of blueberries and raspberries—Or gets all her cheeses, halva (a sesame tahini paste sweetened with honey) and dates imported from Israel on a by-need basis.

The Brookline bakery is a little slice of heaven—and Europe—for that matter, located on 1003 Beacon Street, steps away from the St. Mary’s stop on the C line. Be sure to keep an eye out for Tatte’s presence in early May at the Copley Square farmer’s market and you’ll surely discover why the owner needed a storefront open for brioche breakfast all seven days of the week.