Post and photos by guest blogger Lisa Shames:
So how do you follow up the completion of a 2010 New Year's resolution to make 100 different flavors of macarons? Well, if you're Fritz Pastry's Nathaniel Meads, it's by vowing to make a different classic pastry each week in 2011 (first up: panettone).
We first caught up with Meads back in September when he was three-quarters of the way through his French sandwich cookie project, which began as a tweet announcement from his wife and business partner, Elaine Heaney, in early January of last year and just took off from there.
"Once we put it out there, we'd have looked like jerks if we didn't do it," says Meads.
To celebrate his achievement, Meads fittingly made a champagne-flavored macaron with a buttercream filling that made its debut on Dec. 31. Like the previous 99 flavors, it cost just 75 cents.
"I didn't want to make something that everyone couldn't afford to eat," says Meads, who had a lot of fun making them -- "It was great seeing people get so excited about them," he says -- but admits he was ready to move on to something else.
While the project may be over, that doesn't mean he's done turning out macarons. On any given day, you'll still find four to six different flavors at the Lakeview bakery as well as at Intelligentsia shops.
And if you're jonesing for one of the more unusual ones featured over the last year -- say, Guinness chocolate, port wine or PB+J+J+J, Meads top choice named after his favorite local band -- Meads says he's open to special requests.
In addition to the classic pastries he plans on making (if you've got a favorite, send him a message on their Facebook page or through Twitter), Meads has a few more items on his 2011 to-do list, including making more cakes and a special order bread program.
And croissant lovers take note: Meads hopes to have frozen thaw-and-bake croissants available soon.
Fritz Pastry, 1408 W. Diversey Pkwy, (773) 857-2989, fritzpastry.com.