Following our pizza lunch, I of course needed to stop at one of my preferred UES dessert spots. Two Little Red Hens describes itself as “An American Bakery” and it is definitely as standard and homey as they come.
TLRH has a solid selection of cakes, pies, cupcakes, cookies, muffins, and more. The decor is one of my favorite parts about the shop. They really nail the warm, country kitchen vibe with exposed brick, wicker baskets, and retro cake and pie stands.
The last time I went to TLRH, they had various cake slices for sale. I must say, with the abundance of cupcakes in my life over the past year, slices of cake now hold more novelty for me. I was disappointed to find that they had no slices when I went on Tuesday.
The cupcakes might have been an option, but they really weren’t calling to me. I considered trying the minis, until I learned that they were $1.75. That seemed unnecessarily high, when the regular cupcakes, at four times the size, were only a dollar more.
I decided to go with my other obsession, cookies. I love cookies with lots of fruit, chocolate, and nuts in them. The Orchard cookie sounded perfect. From the description-chocolate, nuts, fruit, oats- I was hoping for something along the lines of the oatmeal jumble cookie from Crema Cafe. Theirs is a hearty and chewy oatmeal cookie studded with chocolate, walnuts, and dried cherries.
It did not end up being what I expected. I did very much like the prominent walnut flavor. There were finely ground walnuts dispersed throughout the cookie in addition to larger chunks. But it was very cakey. The chocolate and dried cranberries were oddly dry. I supposed because there was not enough moisture in the cookie, they dried out during baking. The cakey texture was disappointing, but it was also much too heavily spiced. It reminded me of Swedish gingerbread, pepparkakor. With so many components to begin with, the prevalence of spices was unnecessary.
Some of the prices at Two Little Red Hens are higher than I believe they should be, but overall, the baked goods are made well and it is a charming shop. You won’t find an abundance of warm, charming bake shops on the Upper East Side, and so if you happen to be up there, TLRH stands out as your best bet.
Two Little Red Hens
1652 2nd Ave
New York, NY