Their Success…“Padoca” is the Brazilian term of endearment for local bakeries. Usually, these bakeries are fixtures of the community and run by familiar, friendly faces that know everyone in town. Marina Halpern, who hails from Sao Paolo, owns New York’s Padoca Bakery, which opened at the end of June. The kitchen is in the hands of Rachel Binder, previously the pastry chef of Maialino, and from Israel originally. TaraPaige Group worked with Marina and Rachel on conceptualizing, defining, and developing the business, and we couldn’t be more proud of what the duo is doing:
Pao de queijo—authentic Brazilian cheese bread puffs—are sold alongside sabich sandwiches—an UES favorite. No cronuts here, but the bolo de coco is far superior—a traditional Brazilian cake with a hint of lemon and light and moist with coconut milk. The drip and espresso are provided by Nobletree Coffee, which owns farms in Brazil and roasts in Red Hook, Brooklyn. The made-in-house juices include pineapple-mint and an emerald bottle of kale, apple, and spinach, among others. It’s all good—seriously, all of it. The chicken empadinhas—think snack-size pot pie—haunts us. And with the cold weather coming around the corner, the bakery is starting to launch their soups. Thank goodness; having tasted those during recipe testing, we advise that you try them as soon as possible! The team has done a terrific job of balancing sweet and savory fare to provide something for everyone.
The space was previously a Wok n Roll Chinese restaurant, but you wouldn’t know it! The bakery is now an inviting, comfortable setting with playful touches, much like the food. A beautiful set of windows overlook St. Catherine’s Park, and the walls and ceiling are clad with reclaimed wood. It’s hard not to feel at home in the space. The swing seat lights up children with excitement, and teapot pendant lamps add an accent of whimsy. Whether just stopping in or looking to sip coffee with a friend, you’re going to be taken care of.
Take Aways…The bakery-cafe segment in New York City is tough! Between deli’s, bodegas, patisseries, and third-wave coffee shops, it takes more than muffins and iced coffee to survive. That’s why it’s key to differentiate your brand by bringing something new to guests. And that’s what Padoca Bakery has done. Marina and Rachel have creatively integrated Brazilian, Israel, and American influences into a sweet, petite place at home on the UES with delicious treats and lunch fare priced affordably in a wonderful atmosphere. We’re can’t wait to see Padoca grow into the community fixture it’s destined to be, and the type of place the Upper East Side so dearly needs.
Padoca Bakery: 359 E 68th St, New York, NY 10065 http://www.padocabakery.com