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Fay Da Bakery

Fay Da Bakery

Cantankerous Chinese women inhabit the Fay Da Bakery on Mott Street. Sans-smile, and periodically wearing a frown, they nevertheless obediently fulfill your order with a quick foot. With dirty corrugated metal floors, steel chairs and tables, the atmosphere is more akin to a construction site than it is a bakery; but I’m sure they revel in its “modernity.” With all that said, however, my repeated visits to Fay Da (trust me, I am practically one of their stainless fixtures) isn’t for the atmosphere or the rude women. All these detractors fade away as soon as you take a bite of one of their delicious pastries. My favorite is the traditional egg-custard tart; Kelli likes the red-bean buns. They also serve Japanese Style cheesecake (which is lighter and spongier than the New York counterpart), Chinese Style Moon Cakes, tiramisu, mango mousse, and a large selection of other cakes and tarts. You will be amazed by the prices: pastries start at just 50 cents; and with the money you have left over, there is nothing better to wash down your decadent treat than the hot tea with milk and sugar, or one of multiple flavors of “boba nai tsa” (tea with milk and tapioca). So, although it’s probably not a first-date-caliber attraction in New York City (or perhaps even a second or third for that matter), when you are on your fourth date, and the previous three have eaten up a good chunk of your wallet, take her to the Fay Da Bakery; it worked for me.

Fay Da Bakery, established 1991.

83 Mott Street (between Canal and Bayard)
New York City
(212) 791-3884

Monday-Sunday: 7am-9:30pm


Kelli says on February 22nd, 2005 at 11:07 am:

You can bring that special someone here and say “Anything you want, it’s on me!” Even if they stock up on a dozen pastries, you won’t need more than a $10 bill. Now that’s love. One small note: don’t bring a girl craving chocolate here. I do love the red bean buns, but Chinese bakeries will never compare to the French (e.g. Payard, Balthazar) when it comes to that!

Mark says on February 23rd, 2005 at 4:18 pm:

Not a first, second, or third date caliber place huh…? So maybe after you’ve been married for a while and you’ve grown tired of each other – THEN it’s time for a trip to Fay Da Bakery!

I’m asian and my wife (who’s Irish) loves red bean buns too! I’ll definitely take my sweetie to this sweet shop! Thanks for the suggestions Kelli!

Kelli says on February 23rd, 2005 at 4:50 pm:

I hope you enjoy it! Where do you and your wife usually go for the red bean buns?

This place can be one of many in your arsenal. As Andrew can attest, a girl needs a variety of sweet things to be won over :) (Actually I think a good catch, guy or girl, wouldn’t mind coming here on any # date.)

Andrew says on February 23rd, 2005 at 6:48 pm:

Ah, in the end, you are always right Kel. A “good catch” is there for the time spent, not the ambiance or necessarily even the food. As they say, Love is Love, it chooses us. Thanks for the comments Mark.

Mark says on February 23rd, 2005 at 11:21 pm:

Whenever we get cravings for sweet buns
(red beans included…) we usually head to the Kong Wah Cake Company on 242 Canal Street. It’s a small trek from where we live (Upper West Side) but it’s fun.

S’funny – my wife is a really huge fan of noodles and dim sum -sigh!

Anyways, we love this blog – my wife reads it nightly. Awesome job you guys!

Clarice says on February 24th, 2005 at 7:46 pm:

Man, I love this website. Just reading about egg cup custards and red bean buns makes my mouth water. Do they ship by any chance (don’t have to answer, I’m joking…kindof :) ?

Andrew says on February 24th, 2005 at 11:45 pm:

Thanks Clarice, unfortunately I don’t think that they ship. But, come to think of it, that gives me a very good idea…

Julie says on March 2nd, 2005 at 12:22 pm:

I know what you mean by brusque service but in defense of these women, you have to understand that they have very limited comprehension of English and their main goal is efficiency. You get what you pay for and frankly, I’m not bothered by the service. It’s quick but too many misinterpret it at rude. They are not rude. Rude is being openly antagonistic, which some upscale bakeries can be. These women are simply not that. Look at it this way: they’re pretty patient with the non-Chinese speakers and do their best.

Andrew says on March 3rd, 2005 at 10:20 am:

Julie, I know you are right. Thanks for pointing this out. Perhaps “cantankerous” and “rude” are words too strong to use. But I do hope that I get my point across that this place, even though the atmosphere and staff aren’t perfect in some regards, has the most amazing desserts. And even though you are right, “you get what you pay for”, I think that at Fay Da, you get so very much more.

Julie says on March 4th, 2005 at 4:05 pm:

True true true. Payard’s Fay Da is not. But yes, the value for your buck (or 60 cents) is certainly high. Ever have their steamed buns? Heaven. Their savories are just as good as their sweets. They really are my favorite Chinese bakery, and I’ve tried them all.

Josh says on July 16th, 2005 at 5:34 pm:

Mark, you mentioned that your wife enjoys dim sum and noodles, did you know that Fay Da also has a restaurant located in flushing on Main Street that serves delicious dim sum and other sorts of chinese food? You should go try it sometime!

カジノ says on August 13th, 2005 at 4:37 am:

I have always looked for a possibility to find information as quick as I can. Now there is the internet. And I really appreciate people like you who take their chance in such an excellent way to give an impression on certain topics. Thanks for having me here.


Brett Glass says on December 16th, 2005 at 8:45 pm:

I live in Wyoming, but whenever I make it to Manhattan I make a point of stopping at Fay Da for buns and boba. Definitely first rate food.

Pam Simon says on March 10th, 2006 at 11:46 am:

My family and I LOVE the Switzerland Buns at Fay Da. They are our favorite food in NYC. We come from Delaware— one time we were stupid enough to take a bus trip in (and not the train). The bus took 4 hours to get home, but we were o.k. with food– we had a dozen Switzerland buns for our trip home!

blue sea says on April 11th, 2006 at 1:32 am:

The female owner of Fay Dai in Mott st. location is very racist to chinese (even thou she is chinese herself

Andrew says on April 11th, 2006 at 10:05 am:

Blue Sea – That’s a strange thing to be, racist against your own race. Can you supply us with more details?

Wil says on August 23rd, 2007 at 9:02 pm:

she’s probably not a racist against her own countrymen… but probably just another Chinese person who’s not used to the recent massive influx of Fukienese who are by nature, just loud and ‘uncultured.’

btw, will you guys be happy to hear that Fayda will soon be on 34th Street near Macy’s?

Wil says on August 23rd, 2007 at 9:30 pm:

sorry, let me re-adress the Fukienese ‘rudeness’ factor as I may not have done it justice previosly:

I once asked my Fukienese workers why they often like to speak loud and unmannerly, and their common response was that the closer they got to know one another, the louder they will scream at each other when they communicate… so apparently, what seemed like a rude argument between two Fukienese may actually be a show of affection between two close friends!

Wil says on February 4th, 2008 at 10:10 am:

fyi Fayda on 34th Street is now open for business and it is packed by it’s loyal following. it is located on 34th Street between 7th and 8th avenues. one cannot miss it.

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Lovescool is the documentation of a journey to discover what sweet things are out there, why people love them so much, and perhaps what it takes to start something new.

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An interest, that turned into a blog, that turned into a career. Kelli Bernard is now the owner and baker of Amai Tea & Bake House.

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