Rila: Baked fresh here daily

By Maria A. Montalvo | Oct 07, 2018

There are very few phrases in the dining world that make me as happy as “baked fresh here daily.”

May father nurtured my preference for fresh-baked bread, as he steadfastly believed bread should be consumed on the same day it was made. When I asked about the cases full of delectable baked goods at Rila Bakery & Café, that was the answer – they make and bake everything right there.

Suddenly, the more than two dozen beautiful different items in the brightly lit cases looked even better.

Several patrons were there for lunch, but I only had one thing in mind: the bakery. Fresh-baked bread, fresh-baked croissants, fresh baked pastries and cakes … oh my.

I decided to take home a selection, with the first to go in the box being plain croissant. I took a few seconds to decide which of the three scones and settled on the strawberry cream. The red bean matcha poundcake seemed like something that had to be tried, and I also got a coffee cake, just in case.

Most of my expectations were on the croissant, since it is one of my favorite things when done well. We can often find chocolate croissants or ham and cheese croissants, but a good, plain croissant – I have been on the lookout.

This one was very good, so many layers, impeccably thin layers of dough, crispy on the outside and soft and chewy inside. After I warmed it a touch, it got even better. The red bean matcha poundcake was a beautiful yellow-green color and was dense, as a pound cake should be, but also spongy, and the green tea and red beans created a uniquely wonderful flavor.

The coffeecake was sweet and moist, with a delicate crumb topping. A classic and delicious rendition. In the end, it was the scone that took my breath away. It had the perfect texture inside and out, and with the cream and strawberries baked right in.

I also picked up two small chocolate mousse bites to take to a friend, and they came in an adorable little black logo box with logo wax paper, perfect for a little gift. The Rila logo is charming, with a rolling pin and whisk under the name in what looks like a pie tin.

Rila means “relax” in Japanese, and they said the café is intended to create a relaxing atmosphere and serve handmade fare. They succeed at both. The space is light and open, wood and cream-colored walls with black accents, comfortable tables and chairs.

The décor is welcoming, with a huge chalkboard on the wall, with both the menu and the logo and wonderful artistic renderings of café-related items. The team behind the counter was both pleasant and efficient.

The menu also includes four sandwiches, which I have yet to try – a BLT, grilled cheese, ham and swiss, and caprese (ranging from $6 to $7), along with a creamy corn soup with ham ($5).

In addition to a full range of coffee and espresso drinks, they serve Boba tea (black, jasmine green, milk, or green milk) with topping choices of Boba, pudding, or lychee jelly ($3.25-$3.50). They also make smoothies with seasonal fruits, green tea, milk Calpis (a Japanese milk soda), and banana, as well as frappes with caffe latte, toffee, and cookie (all $4.50).

This is not a spot you can see easily from the street, so make sure you look for it. I agree with their name because I am definitely more relaxed knowing I can find fresh baked goodness so close to home.

Rila Bakery & Café is at 7600 196th St., Suite 500, Lynnwood (on the border with Edmonds), and is open daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

More information is available on their Facebook page (facebook.com/rilacake).

 

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