Quick Bites: Oven Lovin’ From The Bakery Cafe

In the mood for authentic French and German baked goods? You’re in luck! The Bakery Café recently opened in Circle Square Commons in On Top of the World where Yalaha Bakery once operated. This is the second location for owners Pascal and Janice Denis, who also operate The Bakery in Dunnellon.

Pascal, from Cognac in the southwest region of France, has worked under several prestigious bakers, including the late Lionel Poilâne who crafted quality bread baked in wood-fired ovens and whose bakeries still sell throughout the world, including France, New York, and San Francisco. Later, while in Washington, D.C., Pascal worked for The Bread Oven, which sold crafted and decorated breads to the White House while President Reagan was in office.

At both Bakery Café locations, you’ll see creative works of dough art with some breads shaped into letters, baskets, or leaves. Special orders are accepted for weddings and other functions.

Janice helps with the daily operations of the Ocala store. Ingrid Crouzet, also from France, is the manager. Denny Gruendner serves as the managing partner, but he is also well-known as a certified German Master Baker. He bakes the bread as well as the German pastries, cookies, and other goods.

Open six days a week, The Bakery Café also offers salads, sandwiches, soups, coffees, cappuccinos, and real New York-style bagels, which are made by hand and then boiled and baked for a chewy consistency. Visit today or call The Bakery Café at (352) 237-5449 for more information.

The wait is over! Mi Tierra Caliente has finally opened at the intersection of I-75 and CR 484 in South Ocala. The restaurant is located at the end of the plaza that shares a parking lot with Hampton Inn & Suites.

Just opened in March, the restaurant offers both table seating and booths as well as outdoor dining. The restaurant also has a full bar that features delicious margaritas, and a live Mariachi band performs every Friday from 5–8pm. Call (352) 245-2300 for more information or a faxed menu.

One of Ocala’s newest night spots is also one of Ocala’s newest restaurants. BFE (Booze, Fun & Entertainment) is located on Broadway Street downtown and is a must-try. The extensive selection of appetizers includes Mom’s Crabby Things, a mix of crab and cheese on top of an English muffin and broiled, and Chicken Cordon Bleu Bites, which ooze with cheese and are served with your choice of dressing. Steak, soups, salads, sandwiches, burgers, and wraps are also on the menu. Late-nighters can order from a limited menu that includes featured drinks while enjoying the live entertainment offered weekly. For a menu or a schedule of entertainment, visit bfeocala.com or call (352) 351-BFE1 (2331).

Nibbles: Marge and Loring Felix have closed Felix’s Italian Casa after a nearly nine-year run. The couple is moving on after taking a hit in this economy and to deal with personal matters. Not ready to switch careers, however, they are thinking about a café-type restaurant in Crystal River.

Jade Dragon on 27th Avenue has not closed but instead has been taken over by Managing Partner Ali Kalem, who is now offering Turkish dishes. The change gives Ocala yet another unique cuisine to try, one that I believe has not been available before. The restaurant is now called Istanbul Turkish Cuisine. Search for them on Facebook. Cheney Brothers, a food service distributor for restaurants, did it again. They donated barbecued chicken, beans, slaw, and rolls for the recent Special Olympics Torch Run. Call them at (352) 291-7800 for your restaurant needs.

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