It's been a while since I posted a hot spot review. But this week's hot spot is attempting to curb global warming while offering a tasty treat, all at the same time.
Green living is all the rage these days, and Essence Bakery in Tempe, Arizona is taking environmental sustainability to heart. The menu features all organic ingredients, but that's not all. All of the menus and take-home boxes are made from recycled paper, and the building was remodeled using sustainable products. What's not to like?
Essence has terrific sandwiches, especially the grilled cheese with tomato and basil. The salads are also tasty. For example, the salad with mixed baby greens, pears, cranberries, and candied pecans has a white balsamic vinaigrette that perfectly ties all of the flavors together.
The baked goods, however, are irresistible. A smart marketing move on the owners' part, Essence features a dessert case as soon as you walk in the door. Essence is best known for their caramel and chocolate macaroons. The chocolate is a nice treat, but I found myself craving more of the caramel ones as soon as I had finished mine. The caramel flavoring isn't so overpowering that the cookie is too sweet. And the texture of the cream filling sandwiched between the two crisp, yet chewy, cookies is a nice surprise in your mouth. Be sure to order more than one so that you can have one for later when you're having a flashback at home!
Essence Bakery is located on the southeast corner of Hardy and University in Tempe, next to the drive-through Starbucks. They are open Monday - Friday 7 AM - 3 PM and Saturday 8 AM - 3 PM. They are closed on Sundays.