Corner bars with beef-on-weck specials. Car dealerships. Dollar General. Wooden-screen-door-in-the-summer pizza places. Attorneys. Hair salons. National chain restaurants. Funeral parlors. Cafes. Large apartment complexes.
The section of Delaware Avenue between Kenmore Avenue and Sheridan Drive is all things Western New York packed into a single stretch of road, and appropriately, it’s become more diverse in recent years.
Situated between a traditional Chinese restaurant (Home Taste) and a Pakistani drive-through (Clay Handi), Fig Tree Patisserie is adding to that diversity by offering a wide range of pastries and baked goods, including vegan and keto options.
Although the patisserie had only been open a few days when we spoke, owner Natalie Schultz recently told us she’s noticed a diverse range of people coming through her doors.
“Our demographic is weird: It’s very broad,” she said. “In the neighborhood, there’s a lot of older people and a lot of young families that have come in. Through social media, we reach a lot of girls who are like, in their 20s, who want things for their birthdays and stuff.”
While Schultz owns the patisserie, she has turned over half of her display case to vegan baker Courtney Justus, aka That Vegan Betch (@ThatVeganBakingBetch on Insta). The two met over Instagram over mutual respect for one another, and their “forever collab” under the roof at Fig Tree Patisserie is a result of their IRL friendship.
“We see eye-to-eye on the things we want to make, and we want everyone to enjoy sweets,” Schultz said.
With Justus focusing on vegan items, Schultz bakes conventional pastries and baked goods. She also makes gluten-free and keto offerings.
“I want to stick with classic flavors, but people don’t like that,” she said. “So we try to stick with different flavors, trendy flavors. I would say our aesthetic is very earthy. I like to use fresh floral and fresh fruit on cakes. We also do a lot of ‘naked’ cakes here.”
On our visit, we found the keto peanut butter brownie, said to be sugar-free and carb-free, somewhat savory, crumbly and with a strong coconut flavor; an unexpected pleasant surprise. It was the kind of treat you feel somewhat less guilty about eating.
We also tried several macarons, all of which were large, crunchy and creamy, with the cookies ‘n’ cream and birthday cake being top highlights. There was counter seating available when we stopped in and we were told that McCullough coffee and tea products will be available soon.
Still getting used to her new digs, Schultz also told us that she’s excited to become more engaged with her customers and the surrounding neighborhood.
“We want everything to be all-inclusive,” she said. “We want to help support women-owned businesses and support small businesses.”
Fig Tree Patisserie
3062 Delaware Avenue, Kenmore, NY 14217
Hours: Wednesday to Saturday 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., Sunday 7 a.m. – 1 p.m., Monday and Tuesday, CLOSED