Located in an unassuming strip mall tucked behind a gas-station combo, is certainly one of Artesia’s hidden gems. The signs on the neighboring shops are written in languages other than English, which is a good indicator that you are bound to find some good, authentic sweets.
The Asian Bakery Ambiance
Honey Bakery lacks the modern interior design that many other sweet shops have adopted. But it also fails to subject their patrons to pretentious boutique techno music. No posh thrills or frills here - just a plain bakery counter in front of you and a cake-filled refrigerator to your right. It is apparent that the two middle-aged bakery workers learned English as a second language, but this poses no problem. They both speak well enough to take your order and answer your questions. In fact, their broken English is part of the shop's sweet charm.
Though they may not offer the glitz and glam that other bakeries might, this shop provides two important things: 1.) the authentic experience of an Asian bakery, and 2.) undeniably delicious food.
The Star of the Show: Mango Cake
The hands down favorite at Honey Bakery is the mango cake. Offered everyday in different shapes and sizes, this is the kind of cake that dreams are made of. White cake is sandwiched between two layers of thinly sliced mango and whipped cream, and it is topped with fresh strawberries, kiwi, and blackberries. This style of cake is typical of an Asian bakery and Honey Bakery has perfected it. The cake is very light and not overbearingly sweet, as most of the sweetness come from the fresh fruit.
If you’re sweet tooth is searching for something that won’t break the scale, Honey Bakery’s mango cake is where you need to be. Per your request, the friendly staff is happy to write messages on your cake and candles are available for purchase in-store.
Moon Festival and Mooncake
The Moon Festival is a mid-Autumn harvest festival that is popular in the Chinese and Vietnamese cultures. Mooncake is a small pastry that is traditionally filled with lotus paste. These little treats are usually imprinted with symbols of good fortune and are exchanged as gifts during the Moon Festival.
This year, the Moon festival falls on September 12th and Honey Bakery is already well-stocked with a variety of mooncakes:
- White Lotus Paste - This is the most traditional mooncake flavor. With its light sweetness, it is easy to imagine why they are so popular.
- Red Bean Paste - A common filling in Chinese desserts, this red bean mooncake was not as sweet as I would have liked.
- Date Paste (Jujube Paste) - Similar in taste to the red bean mooncake, the date mooncake is smoky in flavor and almost sour.
- Pineapple Jam - By far my favorite of the four flavors offered at Honey Bakery, this mooncake is filled with sweet pineapple jam. This is not a traditional filling, but it was tasty!
This simple, Asian-style bakery may not be the city’s newest hotspot, but Honey Bakery represents one of the many faces of our local culture. Having grown up in the Cerritos-Artesia, this is the type of mom-and-pop shop that I have known and loved. And at the end of the day, a charming staff full of smiles and delicious food always wins.
This was my first time at Honey Bakery and I can certainly say, that I am a true fan that will definitely be back for more of their delightful mango cake!