Jelly Roll Blues

Black Day for Local Foodies by Dara Moskowitz

After 16 years selling Danish baked goods that made pastry lovers weep with joy, Blackey's Bakery in northeast Minneapolis is closing on Saturday--and now we're weeping without joy. Oh, that three pound loaf of rügbröd! (Black pumpernickel, with or without seeds.) Oh, that floatingly light pastry called kringle, which dissolved on the tongue in buttery waves. Oh those meltingly tender almond horns! Gone! Forever! We feel faint.

What, you've never been to Blackey's, and so you're not aching? Well guess what, Convention Grill burger fans, Annie's Parlor burger fans, and Monte Carlo burger fans: you'll be losing the sweet, fluffy, perfect buns that made your burgers so unique.

I talked to Svea Ernst, co-owner of the bakery, about this disaster. "Our son is going back to Denmark, and we cannot go on without him," she told me. "A lot of our business is delivery, and we cannot get reliable drivers. Our son is the one who has been picking up the pieces all the time, and without him we cannot run the business. We have been trying to sell the bakery for a long time but nobody wants it. Or they want it, and they don't have the money. It was a very difficult decision to make, as we have been here almost 16 years, but it is what we have to do."

Aaaaah!!!! I'm rending my garments right now.

Until I learned that there is some hope. Most of Blackey's Danish line will be moving to Denny's 5th Ave. Bakery in Bloomington (7840 5th Ave. S.; 952.881.6573)--and especially the Danish treats will. Whether Denny's Bakery will make the Blackey's rolls that launched a million burgers is up in the air, and whether the clients will follow is too. But where there's hope, there's at least hope.

Not for Nordeasters though. Saturday is Blackey's last day, but smart shoppers will get in there sooner. "Right now it seems like people are stockinig up and filling their freezers," Ernst told me. My only hope is that I can make it up there before this story posts.