If you've been snuffling around the Charlotte food scene long enough, you surely are familiar with the Adele's oatmeal fudge bars: Layers of oaty goodness with a thick chocolate layer in the center. They used to be wrapped in endearingly homemade-looking plastic and piled up at cash registers all over town. CPCC baking instructor Geoff Blount bought the recipe and kept the squares alive for years. I think he still makes them on contract.
So I'm always happy to see another decadent-dessert raise its head. I'll nominate The Sweet Lorraine from Sweet Lorraine's Bakery, which just opened a few weeks ago at 220 East Blvd. (it's in the mustard-colored big, old house near the intersection of East and South).
The bakery is a family endeavor, owned by baker Christine Guerriero, an alum of French Culinary Institute in New York, her dad Chuck and her sisters, Michelle and Stephanie. It's named for their mother, Lorraine, who died in 2004.
The bakery does everything from cupcakes to breads to cookies. The specialty, though, is the Sweet Lorraine, available in a single-serve size for $3.50 or as a dense, larger version that would serve 6 or so for $11. It's a round cake/cookie hybrid with a brownie layer on the bottom and a chocolate chip layer on the top. Christine created it in honor of her mother, who apparently loved both brownies and chocolate chip cookies.
For a taste of the Sweet Lorraine wares, I asked the nice girl behind the counter to pick out three things for 10 bucks:
1. A Sweet Lorraine (left), $3.50. It's really good, with a dense texture and a pleasing soft area in the center that's a little like raw cookie dough. It's not really raw, but had that kind of pleasure to eat, if that makes sense.
2. A single-serve Chocolate French Toast bread pudding, $4. Even cold, this was decadent, with a caramel-like sauce drizzled on top and a good, dense texture. Warmed up, it would be the bomb.
3. A generously big Blueberry Lemon Muffin, $2.50. It had a really good bite of lemon, and a nicely tender texture without the gumminess that can plague big bakery muffins.
All in all, a nice place to stop in for a treat or pick up some things to take for a special occasion.
Closed Mondays. Open 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, until 8 p.m. Friday, 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. www.sweetlorrainesbakery.com.