Never in a million years would I have thought I’d be eating lunch at 11 a.m. in a bake shop with another man. If you posed the idea to Rob he would say the same thing. Yet there we were. Two guys at a table in Spring Hill watching woman after woman enter and leave with sweets of all kinds.
It isn’t that we’re uncomfortable being in such a place. It’s just that it isn’t our scene. While I doubt many of you would argue that the fairer sex places a higher importance on baked goods than the hairier, uglier humans do, I will say we don’t mind the occasional cookie or two. Let’s get one thing straight: We weren’t here for the cookies.
Any restaurant/bakery with a name that references Dirty Harry is bound to have more testosterone-friendly items than the usual. Bake My Day has cases full of chess squares, brownies, pecan pie squares, strawberry cake and many others next to a plethora (but who’s counting) of cookies. As expected, there were more than just baked goods. A lunch menu was what we were looking for, and found it we did.
Taco soup ($5.50) seems to be the crowd favorite over there almost at the corner of Old Shell and McGregor. Rob was all about it, despite temperatures rising to the 80s. He politely allowed me a spoonful or two from his Styrofoam cup, and I must say I enjoyed it, served with a sprinkling of corn chips. I could detect a taco flavoring of chili powder and perhaps a bit of cumin. I am a fan of soup all year round and have chastised restaurants for slashing menus from March to October. Keep the air conditioning running and have all the soup you wish.
Rob had a Magnum of an appetite that day. The soup had to be augmented with a chicken salad sandwich ($6) from the cooler. This monster was on a croissant and it’s worth noting they didn’t skimp on the chicken salad. I received an obligatory pinch and concur with Rob it’s good stuff, complete with pecans and grapes. It came with his choice of cookie, and he chose one of the best chocolate chip creations ever.
For my lunch I was pleased to find a piping hot hearty bowl of jambalaya ($8.25). This generous helping was enough for a meal and then some. I was determined to finish the serving of tomato-red rice and shrimp bits, though I knew it was going to hurt. For $8.25, let it hurt. My cookie of choice was an out-of-this-world oatmeal toffee.
Though this was plenty to eat, I had to take something home. For testing purposes, I’m sure you understand. A half pound of pimiento cheese ($4.50) was staring me down. I rarely pass up the chance to sample the boutique flavor of house-made pimiento and am pleased to report this version is a more modern step away from the soupy versions of yesteryear. A bag of plain potato chips for dipping was in order.
I wasn’t about to leave without a half pound of shrimp pasta salad ($5.50). The mixture of pasta shells and chopped shrimp were well seasoned and had an understated but present kick. This may be a great option for a lightning lunch as you run by and grab a container from the cooler. Recognize this as a dish you don’t see everywhere, so take advantage as it’s on their daily menu.
Gluttony is one of the seven deadly sins, so it was best to leave before we reached that point. Had I been a hungrier man I would have taken a dozen or so chess squares home with me. They are my weakness of the sweet world and a man needs to know his limitations. I’ll be sure to return for some them next time my sweet tooth begins to act up.
I also regret not trying the praline pound cake. This is described to me and recommended by our gracious host as full of pecans and smothered with homemade praline icing. There isn’t a thing that sounds more Southern than that, is there? Imagine my disappointment when, after her description, I was told they don’t sell pralines separately. I reckon that was a good thing. I can only resist so much. A good praline is not something I say no to.
I know what you’re thinking. “Did he order six items or only five?” Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement I kind of lost track myself. But being as this place has been open since 2012 and has already garnered a couple of Nappie awards for best bakery, you need to at the very least try your luck at their lunch menu and ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky?” Well, do you, punk?
I couldn’t resist. Go ahead. Bake My Day.
Bake My Day
156 A N. McGregor Ave.
Mobile, AL 36608