We Americans love our breakfast food. Being that we are in some part culturally descended from the Brits, in many ways our traditional breakfast foods mirror theirs. Take for example the scone. Commonly taken with tea in England, the scone has become a favorite American bakery food packed with different fruits, nuts and flavors. With the help of a very astute native Brit, I began a two-month long scone research project to identify if there are any truly "English" scones in Bend and of all the scones there are, which were the best.
To start with the first question, the answer is "no": There are no true English scones in Bend, unless you are lucky enough to be invited to tea at Anita Walker's house. Anita makes the scones she grew up with - round and flaky, bread like and comparable to our buttermilk biscuits. She bakes them fresh, slices them down the middle and slathers them with butter. Served with a pot of tea, these are nothing like the drier American version I'm familiar with.
On my quest to find the best in Bend and Sisters, I sampled scones at Victorian Café, Westside Bakery, Nancy P's, Angeline's and The Sparrow as well as the five below. CHOW is not making scones again until Spring and I am saving Redmond and Sunriver for my next scone research project. Prices ranged from $1.50-$2.75 and the sky seems to be the limit when it comes to creative varieties and flavors.
The spots listed below ended up being my top five scone choices and are the best in town, unless, of course, you are lucky enough to be invited to Anita's house - there you'll have a real English scone.
5. Strictly Organic
This blob of a scone is mighty tasty. Comprised of as much fruit as dough, the marionberry scone is moist and flavorful and topped with a light glaze of icing. Some of the less fruity scones are bit more crumbly and slightly bitter, so stick with the fruit laden ones.
4. Sisters Bakery
The scone was hand shaped, had a nice texture and was only sweetened by the fruit and a light icing on top. Not too crumby, but not quite as buttery as it could of been.
3. Village Baker
I've tried a number of different flavored scones and I have to say the Apple Walnut Cinnamon is my favorite. The flavor is delicate and the texture is a bit crumbly on the exterior, but moister on the inside.
2. Hey, Cupcake (at Riley's Market in Northwest Crossing)
The best part about these scones is the perfect exterior texture - perfectly crisped without being hard and crumbly. The interior is moist without being cakey and the top notch flavoring ingredients include bittersweet chocolate and real maple sugar.
1. McKay Cottage
By far the winner, especially the savory scones they whip up in house. The texture is not crumby, but moist on the inside with a nice crust. Hand shaped and ample sized, the Irish White Cheddar and Green Onion scone is not to be missed. The sweeter version is also very good and not too sugary or over-bearingly filled with stuff.