Sweet Dream

A bakery where the pastries are as fresh as the nostalgia

main_0Photo: Morgan Ione Yeager

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pened by a Frenchman in 1954, Antoine’s Pastry Shop adapted to its then-Italian neighborhood of Nonantum by serving up such Italian staples as cannoli and biscotti regulars avow is better than anything you can fight your way through all those lines for in the North End. An unassuming throwback of place that hasn’t changed much since it replaced Fried’s men’s store on this quiet corner (there’s not much in the way of decoration except for a few faux oil paintings that look like leftovers from a garage sale), Antoine’s is still owned by family members of the founder, who whip up the delectable old-fashioned cakes and pastries in World War II Navy-surplus industrial mixers and fill them with homemade ricotta cheese and cream fillings that make them taste like your childhood.

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Originally called North Village, Nonantum was renamed for the Nonantum Worsted Company, which beginning in 1880 ran one of the many mills that made this neighborhood the most densely populated in Newton, settled by successive waves of Irish, French Canadian, Italian, and Jewish immigrants.

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