Boston: Mike’s Pastry vs Modern Pastry

I spotted the Mike’s Pastry boxes as soon as we arrived in Boston. Tourists of all kinds were carrying them around the city. Everywhere we went we saw them. Mike’s Pastry Shop is on Hanover Street, in the Italian district, of course. The line to order was out the door and down the block when we found the place. We had reservations at Pellino’s that night, so we didn’t have time to get anything, but we went back to Boston a few days later just to try Mike’s.

Mike’s Pastry was our main destination at first, but while we wandered Hanover Street we found another pastry shop that might be worth a visit as well. Based on a local’s recommendation, we decided to try them both and compare. Which one would be best?

At Mike’s, we ordered eight different kinds of cannoli: pistachio, plain, chocolate, chocolate mousse, ricotta, peanut butter, and more. Each was rich and flavorful. I loved them all, but the mousse and the chocolate chip were my favorites. It took us nearly three days to finish them all, but once they were gone all we could think of was how we would get more before we flew home to Portland. Lucky for us, we flew out of Boston and would need to take the train back to the city before the flight.

Our last trip to Boston gave us an opportunity to try Modern Pastry, located only a few steps from Mike’s but with a much shorter line. Their variety was much broader. They both had Lobster Tails — a cream-filled, flaky pastry — and cannoli, but Modern had many more delights to choose from. Todd got us the Lobster Tail, tiramisu, assorted cannoli, and a chocolate mousse cup. The cream inside the Lobster Tail was so light and perfectly creamy that I didn’t want it to end. As I ate the chocolate mousse cup, my eyes rolled back into my head. It was that good. Deciding which is better was not as easy as I had hoped.

It was hard to imagine that they could get better than Mike’s, but Modern’s variety was outstanding and top quality. While I think everyone should go to Mike’s for the experience and the cannoli, I also think that when the line is too deep at Mike’s, Modern is the perfect solution. You won’t be sorry at either of these two wonderful places and you really must try the cannoli at both.

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