Shelly and Andreas get a cannoli apiece from Mike's and the Modern and then put them to the test. Hint: They determine the tourists might actually be on the right side in this.
....they wrote "The golden standard has always been Mike’s." really?
The TOURIST standard has always been Mike's. After all, their shop is bigger, sells more of a variety of completely inferior crap pastries, and has those cool plastic bags that everyone carries around after they get suckered into buying the crap at Mike's visit Mike's. But hey, I guess the tourists have the gold, so.....
But at least they did a side by side comparison. If they like Mike's better, good--maybe the line will be shorter at Modern.
I like Mikes better
In the North End there are 2 or 3 more places besides Mike's and the Modern's where that heaven sent, saint sanctified, proof of Italian pastry superiority, can be found in the North End. Each one is different, delicious and divine. Step out of the Hanover Street pastry box and explore!
Also don't forget that the Modern has one of the best neon signs to be found. The Modern's sign, though going on umpteen years, and manages to evoke at least a whiff, if the not the substance, of a Modern art piece of neon. Mike's is all bright and shiny but it doesn't evoke the Modern's sense of its past Modernism.
I did a double-blind taste test between Mike's and Modern, and was surprised when Mike's won. Both were good, but Mike's had a little better flavor.
Did they tie up their taste buds too? Modern is better overall. I agree though that the more people go to Mike's the shorter the line will be at Modern!
I have always and will continue to always take out of town friends to Modern.
My girlfriend and I both did a side-by-side ricotta canoli test a couple months ago. We both thought Modern was superior (better quality, but lower quantity), but to each their own :-).
That said, I've also had the fruit shaped marzipan from both, and I found Mikes to be better in presentation and flavor.
The headline is true... "TRYING to settle ... the canoli war"... unless one of them closes, god forbid, I don't think it ever will be.
The subject clearly requires further study, with more data points.
And include Bova's around the corner from Mike's and Modern! My favorite cannoli is Mike's, then Bova. But Bova also has amazing fresh bread and such good Boston Cream Pie that I brought it to my family, an 8 hour drive away in upstate NY. They loved it.
Why do I have to choose?
I get one from each whenever I want a canoli.
Hi Universal Hub-ers! Glad you enjoyed this topic. So just to set a few points straight. For starters, it was me and my husband (Andreas, not Mike) who did the taste test.
@Sarcastic Sam - I guess "golden standard" maybe wasn't the right term... I just meant that Mike's is usually the first that comes to mind when people (tourists, I guess and non native Bostonians) think cannolis and North End. (ps. Have you done a side by side? Try it. Honestly.)
@MovingForwardorBackward - You're right! I need to try more cannolis. Only other one I've had was from the NYC version of Mike's and I wasn't a fan! It was even skinnier than Modern and very expensive! Any other places you'd recommend? And you're totally right on the sign at Modern - I love it!
@Pip - Modern may be better overall. I haven't tried much else there but a few cookies and a lobster claw. Neither have I tried much else at Mike's. Try them side by side though - see what you think. I would never have known what I was missing if I hadn't!
A few "new" pastry shops that opened in the North End over the past year. Actually one may be near The Modern but another is on, I think, Salem Street. Their cannoli was not quite as dense and the texture was smoother than the Modern's. But I believe that when on the horns of a dilemma of which cannoli to enjoy the only solution is both!
Hi, funny handle you got there.
No I haven't done a Mike's vs Modern side by side, but the last time I got cannoli from Mike's they were pre-filled, sitting in the case apparently for a long time because the shells were very mushy. Granted this was years ago. The Modern version was filled on the spot, I think (it was not mushy). That also was too long ago--the past few times I've attempted to go to Modern the line was too damn long. That's one thing Mikes definitely has over Modern is that it's more adequately staffed.
Maria's pastries are darn good too, and is my go-to when Modern's line is too long. Which is most of the time.
I just may do a Mike's vs. Modern's vs. Maria's. just because!
Funny, no one ever mentions Maria's. Highly recommend the almond marzipan candy, the torrone candy (an Italian nougat candy), and absolutely the most amazing, freshly baked biscotti. I don't even care for biscotti that much but love it from Maria's!
At Modern, who cares about canoli's if you want a truly amazing treatgo to Moderns and try their chocolate peanut butter cups, you will never think about a canoli again!
To answer your question, I do care about cannoli. But I also am intrigued by a fresh made chocolate peanut butter cup, so I have to check this out.
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