Welcome to Ask Eater, a column from Eater New York in which the site’s editors, reporters, and critics answer specific or baffling restaurant requests from readers and friends. Have a question for us? Submit your question in this form.
I’m not a journalist but my birthday is coming up. Flour Shop on Lafayette Street in Manhattan is my dream cake shop, but is not currently making or delivering cakes. For those of us having birthdays where can one get a good birthday cake in NYC?
Birthday in Isolation
Dear Birthday in Isolation,
The novel coronavirus has set many tasks for journalists — food journalists like me have had to switch to hard news that proves tragic much of the time. Which is why your request comes as a hopeful breath of fresh air.
I can tell by your preference for Flour Shop that you prefer big, bold cakes with a lot of things going on. After canvasing the city’s supply of bakeries to see what was still open, I’ve come to the conclusion that you should order your cake from Sugar Sweet Sunshine, which has two branches. There’s a branch in the Essex Street Market, but the principal one is at 126 Rivington Street between Essex and Norfolk streets.
I’m assuming you want a smaller cake, perhaps enough for two to four people to eat lots, since nobody’s having big birthday parties these days. I spoke with Peggy Williams, one of the owners, and she tells me cakes of this size would run $20 to $68, with options that extend to type of cake and type of frosting, as well as inscriptions and other special embellishments and fillings.
You can order by phone (212-995-1960), and pick the cake up at the bakery. She also tells me a delivery service is available but sporadic, or perhaps you can arrange your own delivery. The cake shown above is one that is delightful to look at, and I asked Williams if she could make that one. She noted sadly that the gummy bears came from nearby Economy Candy, but that place is currently closed except for online orders. Other whimsical decorations are available, but if you want to provide her with your own gummy bears...
Good luck and happy birthday!