By Tamara Palmer
Longtime Bayview resident Yvonne Hines opened her shop Pralines By Yvonne in 2006, but has been in the business of baking since 2002. Her booth at the recent Bernal Heights Street Fair tipped off Suzy's taste buds. My oldest friend and a Bay Area native visiting from SoCal, Suzy told me in no uncertain terms that I needed to taste Hines' cookies and pies as soon as possible—and also that she was considering making the 40-mile round trip drive to get more cookies before she left.
Needless to say, I was intrigued enough to take a foodventure across town.
When I got there, I realized that I could have taken MUNI's T line, which drops off right out front, and there was an interesting looking diner down the block.
How good can a cookie be, I wondered, before tasting the almost caramelized nuance of the satisyingly crisp Ol' School butter cookie, which forms the basis of her other cookies such as peanut butter or the pecan dazzled Rae-Rae, named after her mother. Pies are made in miniature but larger versions can be special ordered (she's taking Thanksgiving inquiries now). An internal debate as to a favorite pie is still being held, but early projections show the pecan pie as a likely winner. Even better is what she calls her signature product, the pecan praline that brings my taste memories straight back to New Orleans in one languid bite. I bought two, knowing I'd like it, and should have honestly gotten a few more.
I also like that you can get two of her cream cheese frosted red velvet "Presidential" cupcakes for less than one at one of those yupcakeries.
I'm proud to say that this is the first bakery that I have ever cleaned out, trying one of everything except the Mitchell's ice cream; had to draw the line somewhere. Pralines By Yvonne is located at 5128 3rd Street (at Revere).