The answer to the question, “Where can I get the best cannoli in The Woodlands?” is about to get a little simpler. Carlo’s Bakery, the restaurant at the heart of TLC’s popular show Cake Boss, will open one of its new kiosk bakeries in The Woodlands Mall on February 18.
Unlike the company’s full-service bakeries that sell the show-stopping cakes featured on reality TV, the kiosks focus on approximately 20 grab-and-go items like cannoli, cookies, and the signature lobster tail, a flaky puffed pastry filled with French cream and a touch of Bailey’s Irish Cream.
“About a year ago, we came up with this concept of the kiosk model for malls,” head baker Joe Faugno tells CultureMap. "The mall business has changed a lot over the years. They’re using culinary to bring people in. I guess they’re fighting the Internet. We’re a good fit for that.”
Of course, the opening will get a little celebrity heat. Faugno, in town to attend the Taste of the NFL as part of last weekend’s Super Bowl festivities, said someone from Carlo’s, perhaps even Buddy Valastro, the Cake Boss himself will attend the opening.
Houston who desire to purchase one of Carlo’s signature cakes should take heart. Faugno says the company also plans to open a full service bakery in the Houston, just as it did in Dallas last year, but they're still scouting for the right location.
“We’re looking for the perfect spot, that’s what it comes down to,” Faugno says. “We have a team of people. We look into this very carefully. We want it to be good for us and good for the community. We’re going to do some research. I think what we see when we open in The Woodlands will tell us where we’re going to be.”
Hopefully, that wait won’t be too long. Judging by the enthusiastic response Carlo’s has received in Dallas, Texans have an appetite for the bakery’s sweet treats.
“If you told me what was going to happen two or three years ago, that we’d have this kind of reception in Texas, I wouldn’t have believed you,” Faugno says. “I’ve been to Dallas I don’t know how many times since it’s opened. It’s a pleasure to come to Texas. It’s like coming home.”