Phantom loves to have his cake and eat it too, along with breads, muffins, brownies, and whatever’s coming out of the oven at these 8 Great bakeries.

White’s Bakery
Multiple Locations

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Kicking off the Great 8 is White’s Bakery. With three locations including Hingham, Mansfield, and their flagship store in Brockton, this bakery boasts the biggest, most tempting, frosting-packed, fully-stocked pastry case in New England. To achieve all of those sweets, the massive operation starts mixing, frosting, and folding at 2 a.m. every day. So by the time customers start lining up, they’re greeted with a smorgasbord of sweets.

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Bricco Panneteria
North End

Another Great 8 winner is Bricco Panneteria in Boston’s North End. Located down a narrow alley lies some of the best Italian breads in all of New England, all made by hand, every day with a variety of flavors and fillings, like sourdough, whole wheat sourdough, Kalamata olive and Prosciutto and Parmesan.

Multiple Locations

Paul is a global bakery chain that originated in Paris over 125 years ago, and has recently set up shops in Somerville, Natick and Downtown Crossing. A single batch of baguettes takes over seven hours to prepare, and undergoes thorough inspection before it can be sold. Another French favorite, the croissant, is given the star treatment to make sure it, too, comes out pure and simply delicious.

Cakes by Erin

Cakes by Erin in Haverhill showcases the beautifully sweet talents of Erin Erler, who’s considered one of the top custom-cake bakers in the country. When she’s not making insane creations for celebrities like Zac Brown and Seth MacFarlane in her nut free bakery, she’s crafting indulgent cupcakes in crazy flavors like Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Strawberry Lime Margarita, and the Samoa with caramel, coconut, and chocolate.

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Frederick’s Pastry
Multiple Locations

Frederick’s Pastry has storefronts in Amherst and Bedford, New Hampshire, along with one in North Andover, Massachusetts. They are as passionate about purple as the Phantom Gourmet himself, because the owner happens to be a fan of fuchsia. There’s purple velvent cake, purple velvent cake truffles, purple velvet cheesecake… you get the idea.

The Holy Donut
Portland, Maine

Another Great 8 winner is The Holy Donut, with 2 locations in Portland, Maine. Customers line up at this unique donut shop because their deep-fried beauties are made with a mashed potato base. Creative flavors include Coffee Brandy, savory Bacon and Cheddar, and for all you chocolate lovers, Dark Chocolate and Sea Salt.

Hearth Bakery

Hearth Bakery in Plymouth is a world class bread bakery where they fire their loaves the old fashioned way, using a natural starter, classic techniques, and a state-of-the-art gas deck oven. In addition to supplying breads to high end restaurants, customers can come into their small storefront and get everything from the crusty French Country bread, to Hearty Kalamata olive, to their incredible Four Cheese Bread.

Petsi Pies
Somerville, Cambridge

Rounding out the Great 8 is Petsi Pies in Somerville and Cambridge. This colorful little bake shop offers muffins, scones, cookies, and cupcakes, but they specialize in all natural, Southern-style pies like sweet potato, classic apple and lemon meringue. They’re all a slice above anything you’ve ever tasted.

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