Sweet treats are one of life’s simple pleasures. Many good memories from childhood and beyond involve a celebratory dessert or summertime indulgence. For me, family vacations meant waking up to share a bag of powdered donuts and ending the day with ice cream from the Door County Ice Cream Factory.
Here on the peninsula, we’re lucky to have many places to stop for sweets, and this season we welcome two more delicious options to Fish Creek.
Just north of the Door Community Auditorium on Highway 42, you’ll find the Swedish cafe and bakery FIKA, which is now in its first full season of operation after a soft opening in the fall. The name refers to a coffee break that Swedes take daily, but it’s much more than just a coffee break: FIKA means to slow down and enjoy the present moment through good food, delicious coffee and great company. At this quaint bakery, you can do exactly that each day for breakfast, lunch and in the early afternoon.
The fan favorites in the bakery case are the big, sticky pecan rolls and Swedish cardamom rolls, which often sell out by lunchtime. Everything is made fresh daily from scratch, promising an authentically delicious flavor. I sampled a lavender cookie, which is baked with locally grown lavender from Island Lavender Company; and a coconut espresso ball, which is a compact ball of rich Ghirardelli chocolate, espresso powder and oats rolled in shredded coconut. Both would be best enjoyed with a hot cup of Isely Coffee or one of FIKA’s six speciality lattes.
The cafe is more than just sweet, though. FIKA also features a selection of well-loved savory items: Swedish meatballs, soup of the day, quiche of the day, lunch sandwiches and Swedish open-faced sandwiches called Smørbrød. New to the menu is take-and-bake pizza, also made in house from scratch. Visit the cafe and bakery daily (except Tuesdays), 7:30 am – 3 pm. Catering and to-go orders are also available for picnics and to enjoy at home.
Sweetness Dessert, Wine and Coffee Bar
Also enjoying its first season is the sweet-focused establishment called, appropriately, Sweetness. The dessert, wine and coffee bar is open daily (except Tuesdays), 5:30-11 pm, in the Julie’s Park Cafe space at the entrance to Peninsula State Park in Fish Creek. The concept focuses on creating beautiful, from-scratch desserts that put a sweet finishing touch on your evening. Sweetness stays open late to allow theater- and concert-goers the chance to stop in after a show.
Leading the operation is pastry chef Trevor Treml, who trained at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts. His menu features a set list of desserts that cover all the bases: crème brûlée, strawberry cheesecake, tiramisu, key lime pie, black forest cake and – for the kids and kids at heart – a decorate-it-yourself cupcake.
A rotating menu is updated every few weeks to feature additional exciting items. Beginning this week, the rotating menu will feature an opera cake, raspberry-sorbet mimosa, strawberry shortcake, Kahlúa cheesecake and piña colada brûlée.
Each dessert has a recommended wine pairing, but if you don’t enjoy wine, choose from the specialty cocktails, beer list, espresso-bar options or nonalcoholic beverages. Enjoying a dessert and drink is the perfect way to have a nightcap or gather with friends after dinner to linger over conversation and a sweet something.