Dining

Sweet Treats: The Best of NYC Bakeries

by Julie Besonen, 12/18/2013

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  • Mazzola Bakery and Cafe
    192 Union St., 718-643-1719, Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn
    Lard bread is a conversation starter on any occasion. In case you're not clued in, it's more delicious and irresistible than it sounds. At Mazzola the fat, burnished loaf is flecked with bits of cured pork and provolone cheese, its texture more tender than crusty, and leaves behind a hit of black pepper on your tongue. The cozy, old-fashioned corner bakery also has a not-too-sweet assortment of classic Italian cookies and pastries, plus croissants, bagels and pretzels, but it's that lard bread you have to get. One loaf might not make it home intact, so better get two—and bring cash (credit cards are not accepted).

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