Luckhaus & Brubaker Sweets & Treats: Bringing Elegance and Fun to Charleston Sweets

By Mark A. Leon
By Mark A. Leon

Last week, I stopped into Luckhaus & Brubaker for a thank you gift.? After spending a quick moment browsing the inventory and taking in the indulgent smells of chocolate, coconut and peanut butter, I ordered a coconut macaroon with chocolate ganache, Key Lime truffle and Baileys truffle.? They were beautifully wrapped in a clear plastic bag with a red ribbon and a brown logo sticker.? A simple and elegant thank you gift for a generous favor.

Our love for Luckhaus & Brubaker began over a year ago when I was spending a Friday morning and afternoon celebrating the birthday of my dear friend Shannon.? Typically, birthdays are days of festivities and celebration, but for Shannon, this day also holds a bittersweet memory.? Per her request, the morning and afternoon would be just her and I.? Naturally, you need cake, so we bought a bottle of champagne and orange juice, went to Luckhaus & Brubaker and ordered the Coconut Vanilla Cake.? As we sat outside at 11 AM on a Friday morning drinking mimosas and enjoying each savory bite of this cake, we knew we found something special.

Picture a mini Willy Wonka factory, where visions of chocolate lollipops, croissants, truffles, pies, and tarts dance in your head.? All around, life size animals built from the sweetest things on Earth, welcome you with a smile.? This is that little end of the puzzle piece of heaven called Luckhaus and Brubaker.

Each visit, you are greeted with a smile and laid back, enjoy your experience welcome.? No pressure here.? Take in the smells, look all around and ask us if you need assistance.? Each visit is a one of a kind.? One day may be the fruit tart or the Grand Marnier truffle.? Maybe a fruit filled croissant or Tiramisu.? Sometimes you go in for a cupcake or cinnamon roll and walk out with a homemade dog treat for your puppy and a chocolate covered pretzel for the little one.? Make sure you sneak a chocolate bar in for later.

As a self proclaimed anti-sweets person, I am taken back by the precision detail and explosiveness of the products.? A single 3 inch truffle can last five or more bites because you are offered a wealth of decadent flavor with each and every bite.

One of the more remarkable parts of my visits is the selfless feeling of guilt and generosity all wrapped up in one.? With treats for children, adults or elegant affairs as well as baked goods and coffee, you can treat yourself, buy a few gifts or make the children smile all in one visit.

We cannot say enough about the incredible prices.? With options to meet all budgets, the fine staff of L&B want you to savor your experience without emptying your wallet.

Their shop extends to your home with an amazing menu of cakes, tarts, pies, cupcakes, cookies and homemade ice cream to meet all your catering needs.

Homemade ice cream
Homemade ice cream

Come in for the smells, walk around and enjoy the museum of chocolate statues and leave with a feeling of satisfaction and warmth.? Luckhaus & Brubaker is located at 1939 Maybank Highway, James Island, SC and note, they are closed on Mondays.

 

How Sweet It is to Be in Charleston – Best Bakery/Pastry Shops

By Mark A. Leon
By Mark A. Leon

How often do we wake up or find that mid day slump and we just crave some good old fashioned sweets.? We are of course in Charleston, so any old sweets will not do.? It is critical that we put some serious thought into the right delicacy for the right moment.

We have become home to some of the most beloved pastry chefs around.? Some don the kitchens of our high class restaurants and others have found a nest to enchant our taste buds with sweetness.

Here is our guide to some of the best bakery/pastry shops in the Charleston area.

Luckhaus & Brubaker Sweets and Treats – 1939 Maybank Highway, James Island, SC – You will immediately be swept away by the life-size chocolate sculptures throughout the store and decadent smells.? You much indulge in one or more of the truffles (mocha, baileys, key lime) and a homemade cake (each slice is meant for sharing).? If you have that special puppy at home, pick up a doggie treat.

Wildflour Pastry – 73 Spring Street, Charleston, SC / 1750 Savannah Highway, West Ashley, SC – If you are lucky enough to get a homemade cookie (Oatmeal walnut cranberry is heavenly) or key lime pie,? you will be in seventh heaven.? They muffins with cream cheese topping, brownies and amazing coffee drinks are why the neighbors keep coming back.? The savory pesto, mozzarella and sun-dried tomato turnover is a repeat favorite of ours.? They have some yummy puppy snacks as well.

Sugar Bakeshop – 59 1/2 Cannon Street, Charleston, SC – Cupcakes, tarts, cookies, muffins or pies:? This place is just adorable and the owners are just as sweet at the edibles.

Kaminsky’s Desserts and Bar – 78 North Market Street, Charleston, SC – What can you say, homemade pies, steamers, Baileys, Kahlua, tea and pie right in the heart of Market Street.? This is a romantic, family or people watching hotspot for late at night after a hearty meal and long walk by Waterfront Park.

carm1Mudd Pie Girl Bakery – North Charleston (Customized Bakery Needs) – If you need the perfect wedding cake, this is your baker.? At the ripe young age of 4 or 5, she knew what she wanted to do and she does it so well.? If you need a customized and incredible catering need met, look no further.

Cafe Framboise – 159 Market Street, Charleston, SC – The French know pastries and crepes.? This team will knock your socks off for breakfast, lunch and dessert.? Their selection is tremendous and each item is made with love.? Try the fruit tart, quiche and sweet crepes.

Carmella’s Dessert Bar – 198 East Bay Street, Charleston, SC – If you want a fine glass of wine, a scoop of homemade ice cream, a large delicious piece of cake or muffin, an espresso martini, chocolate covered strawberries or hot cocoa while you people watch on East Bay, make your way to Carmella’s.

Take some time to review the menus and look at some pictures to whet you appetite.? Then make some plans to get on a sailboat and head to the island of sweet dreams.

 

 

Ooh La La France in Charleston – Delight with Baguette Magic

By Mark A. Leon
By Mark A. Leon

If you frequent Folly Beach, you have passed this small unimposing bakery just to the left on Folly Road.? It is hidden near a salon, boxing center, barber shop and La Hacienda.? You will notice the blinking open light, but many are unaware of the bakery creations that lie inside.? Baguette Magic offers a unique French Style Bakery experience right in your own backyard.

Their menu is small enough to fit in your wallet and their pricing is very similar to the Euro system where all tax is built in.? They even offer wallet size menus upon arrival so you can plan ahead for the next time.? Let us lay out the menu to help show the simplicity of this establishment.? Baguette Magic will not win you over with complex or fancy, but pure delicious delicacies.? The fresh baked fluffiness is in sight and smell from the first step inside.

They offer five culinary categories:? Bread, Croissant, Sandwiches, beverages (juice, milk, water) and Saturday & Sunday Brunch.? Of course, no meal would be complete without a fine coffee selection.? If you are looking for a traditional cup of drip coffee, keep making your way to Starbucks, for Baguette Magic only serves French Press pour.? It is rich and robust and wakes you like a zesty bar of soap.

Their breads and croissants are authentic French style and this authenticity, makes it a breath of fresh air in James Island.

The interior is small and quaint with a bar top area, a few booths and tables and a staff right in front of you baking away before the sun even rises.

If you are looking to start your morning right, start with a berry or almond croissant.? The soft flaky outside combined with divine fresh ingredients inside will leave your mouth wanting more.? Savor each bite and eat slowly for the taste lingers on.

If you find your way there for lunchtime, you may lean toward a Salmon & Dill Croissant, Prosciutto & Mozzarella with Basil Croissant or their unique offering of Pate de Campagne.

Baguette Magic can cater to one, an adoring couple starting their day before a bridge walk or cater to larger groups.

At $3.00 for a berry or almond croissant, $2.00 for a cup of coffee and $8.00 for a sandwich, the prices are incredibly well within any price range.

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If you arrive to a line, don’t fret.? Be patient and enjoy the aromas throughout this small intimate bakery.? The wait will be worth it.

Starting in the fall, Baguette Magic will start to offer homemade desserts to its menu.

The staff truly compliments the food with a kind demeanor and welcoming smile with each visit.

Baguette Magic Website – 792 Folly Road, James Island, SC (843) 471-5941

Hours:

Monday:??????? Closed

Tuesday: ? ? ?? 7:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Wednesday:? 7:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Thursday:???? 7:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Friday:????????? 7:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Saturday:???? 7:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Sunday:?????? 7:00 AM – 3:00 PM