Sweet Breams are made of this…of course this song ran through my mind when entering Sweet Breams, a taiyaki bakery in downtown San Mateo. What? You haven’t heard of taiyaki? Well I hadn’t either, until recently.
But here I was, in this cute bakery run by Tara Wong. Taiyaki are fish-shaped waffles filled with azuki bean paste, Nutella, chocolate or vanilla custards. Each week Sweet Breams also offers the “catch of the week” flavor (last week it was coffee and cream). And they’re served fresh and hot – about 2 bites per tiny fish. The place smells like waffle cones.
I took the kids in there, and they went nuts. A large screen television attracted Zachary – especially since it was playing a Transformers movie. Dori happily chatted Tara’s ear off. And I was looking at the artwork on the wall – done by local artists and available for purchase. (And purchase I did – a larger piece designed specifically for the bakery, and a smaller piece called Miso Panda. Dori and I fought over that one – still not sure who will get it).
You buy the taiyaki in schools (or a half school). It equals about 50 cents each – not cheap, but definitely good. Don’t come hungry or you could eat a whole school up easily.
They have a “secret” menu, where you can get a baker’s dozen in the taiyaki school, plus other special types of orders. But I won’t give it away here. You have to go to Sweet Breams website to see.
Sweet Breams, 220 2nd Avenue, San Mateo. Check their hours before going. Generally they're open from 12:30 to 3:00, then 4:00-7:00, 8:00 or 10:00 depending on the day. They're closed on Mondays.