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Food & Drink

Patrons appreciate personal touch at White Oak bakery and espresso bar

JoAnne Klimovich Harrop
| Wednesday, June 29, 2016, 9:00 p.m.
The pastry case tempts patrons at Patti’s Pasticceria in White Oak.
JoAnne Klimovich Harrop | Tribune-Review
The pastry case tempts patrons at Patti’s Pasticceria in White Oak.

Family photos on the wall, some tattered, of people dressed in old-fashioned clothing represent the history and generations who have helped create goodness — in the form of cakes, pies and cookies — at Patti's Pasticceria.

“I wanted to have the photos here in the store,” says Patti Macey of the Italian bakery and espresso bar in White Oak that she co-owns with her family. She describes each picture, occasionally pausing to relive a memory. “They all are part of what we make every day.”

It's not just about the butter, sugar and flour. It's about continuing the life of a tasty treat from Grandma or sharing an afternoon with Dad forming cannoli shells from scratch, which Macey and her father, Anthony Fiasco, do together. Recipes also include those from her late grandmother, Angie Fiasco, and mother, Patsy Fiasco.

“I enjoy that time with my dad,” Macey says. “We try to keep it consistent, and we use family recipes, which keeps the tradition alive.”

The pasticceria, which means Italian pastry shop, is a place where the owners want the customers to feel at home, to come in and have a cup of freshly brewed Pittsburgh-based La Prima espresso and a pastry. A 12-ounce cup of coffee is $1.59. House-made soups are $3.99 for 8 ounces. Cookies are $6.99 a dozen. Doughnuts are $1 each, $8.50 a dozen.

The shop, where everything is made from scratch, is known for its pizzelles, biscotti, zeppoli (fried dough) and a shortbread and potato chip cookie with chocolate drizzle. Customers crave the burnt almond torte, cheesecake, thumbprint cookies and carrot cake.

“I am saying ‘yes' to Patti's carrot cake,” says Monte Durham, fashion director on TLC's “Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta,” who met Macey through Wedding Clickers bridal shows where he's made personal appearances. “Yum, yum.”

The bakery also makes pepperoni rolls and breakfast sandwiches and sells Italian drinks, which are club soda with flavored syrup. Gluten-free options and organic coffee are available.

Leftovers are donated to Meals on Wheels, churches and the Blessing Board, a nonprofit organization in Oakmont that provides donated household furnishings to those in need.

Macey began the business more than two decades ago, working from her home. The shop will celebrate its fourth anniversary at its current location July 17.

“We are old school. ... I don't want to be Panera Bread or a Starbucks. I want to be us, a family bakery,” Macey says.

Her husband, Andrew Macey Sr., handles a lot of the behind-the-scenes stuff, including delivering wedding and party cakes.

Son Andrew Macey Jr. says they put as much effort into the basic baked goods as they do the more complicated items.

“Nothing goes out of here if it's not fresh and perfect,” Andrew Macey Jr. says. “When I told people we were opening a bakery, they were like, ‘You are nuts.' But once you taste something from our bakery, you will love it, and you will come back. We have people come back in and say, ‘This tastes just like my mother or my grandmother made (it).' It brings back memories,”

It does, says Jim Dunlay of North Huntingdon, a longtime customer who stops in several days a week. He says everything is fresh, nothing is frozen and the products speak for themselves.

“The people I send here keep coming back here,” Dunlay says. “I have been to other bakeries, and this is the best. It's comfortable here. The customer service is outstanding. Plus, they support the community. They are good people. They make you feel like family.”

Patti's Pasticceria is at 1502 Lincoln Way, White Oak. Hours are 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays. Details: 412-896-6246 or pattiswhiteoakbakery.com

JoAnne Klimovich Harrop is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 412-320-7889 or jharrop@tribweb.com.

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