Thursday, May 19, 2011

Off the Map: Eating Whoopie in Maine

Whoopie Pie – Two Fat Cats Bakery, Portland, ME
Two Fat Cats Bakery

Nothing like carting yourself all the way to Maine only to find that Two Fat Cats Bakery is out of whoopie pies.
Wherefore Art Thou Whoopie Pie?
Vodka Stinger ventured to Maine recently to attend the wedding of one of her college roommates.  On their way to the middle of the state, she made her travel partner stop off in Portland in the name of Best Thing I Ever Ate tour completion.

One of Portland's two Food Network-featured dishes is the whoopie pie at Two Fat Cats Bakery, which is singled out by Chuck Hughes on the CAKE WALK episode.  Venturing through the Maine mist (temporarily believing we have mistakenly landed in Seattle), we arrive at the bakery just before the 6:00pm closing time (by the way, what is with everything in Portland closing by 6:00pm?  Highly inconvenient).
This Is What Vodka & Ginger are Starting to Look Like
Just off the waterfront, Two Fat Cats is not exactly in what one would call the “populated” section of Portland – it is in more the "empty lot and slightly creepy" section of town.   Meandering inside, Vodka is blind to the other pastries under the glass cabinet, as she requests one whoopie pie.

“We’re actually out of whoopie pies today.”


The workers tell us that the whoopie pies will be back in the morning, so the next day, we venture back over to the wrong side of the tracks to finally procure a whoopie pie.  We are both familiar with these delicacies due to our soon-to-be-betrothed college roommate, who used to receive care-packages of them from her mother (she also happened to use them as a substitution for her cake at said wedding).  However, this is our first time purchasing a genuine Maine whoopie pie ourselves.

And it is the best we ever had.
Finally, A Litter of Whoopie Pies
We take the whoopie pie outside and divide it at the picnic table outside of Two Fat Cats (overlooking the scenic abandoned lot across the street).  Fluffy white cream sandwiched between two halves of chocolate cake, it is everything Chuck Hughes promised.  The filling, though light and more airy than we had previously experienced, is overflowing in sweet flavor, and the chocolate sides are rich and neither gooey nor crumbly (a flaw that plagues some otherwise tasty whoopie pies).
A Work of Maine Art
This whoopie pie is well worth the 16-hour wait, and it is superior to items we later procure at Standard Baking Co. down the street.  Two Fat Cats Bakery should launch a campaign to make the whoopie pie the image that tourists conjure up when they think of Maine – we’re pretty sure these cakes could take down those pesky little lobsters.

Two Fat Cats Bakery’s Whoopie Pie: 5 stars*

*Certifiable Best Thing We Ever Ate

1 comment:

  1. As it happens, the Maine State Senate (or House, I can't remember) just had a :heated: debate about whether to make the whoopie pie the official dessert of Maine. It got ugly. (Pennsylvania got involved, too, what with those darned Amish claiming birthright). Anyway, it became the official Maine State Treat (blueberry pie is the official dessert), so a campaign would be well-timed.