Why: Treat started out in 2010 making gourmet cupcakes and has since become a micro-bakery that offers cookies, hand pies, scones, coffee cake and muffins in addition to cupcakes. Treat also has branched into a wholesale pastry business that supplies many Clark County coffee shops with handcrafted baked goods.
From house-made ice cream sandwiched between two fresh-baked cookies to house-made cakes similar to Hostess Ding Dongs, every treat on the menu pairs well with Stumptown cold brew coffee in original and nitro, available there on tap.
What I tried: I tried a cup of the nitro cold brew and an assortment of baked items, including a bacon and cheddar biscuit, a coconut chocolate chunk coffee cake, a marionberry scone, a honey bran muffin, a snickerdoodle cookie, a salted chocolate chip cookie, a brookie (flourless chocolate cookie) and a cereal killer cookie. I also sampled a bananas foster ice cream sandwich and a salted caramel chocolate chip ice cream sandwich.
Although every selection I tried was scrumptious in its own right, Treat's version of the Ding Dong was my favorite. It is everything Hostess believes its Ding Dongs to be. Treat's are simply utopian. They have pure, unadulterated chocolate flavor along with a moist, dense textured cake and a cream-filled center with stand-alone quality, and are finished with a complete dip of melt-in-your-mouth chocolate.
The other baked items, excluding the bacon and cheddar biscuit, could be divided into two levels of sweetness. The cookies were all very sweet (including the ones used for the ice cream sandwiches) and are certain to cure the most serious of sweet cravings. The coffee cake, scone, muffin and hand pie were less sweet and were suited to accompany other items at the breakfast table. I noted that the flourless cookie was a surprise to bite into. The exterior had a light crust, which gave way to a soft center reminiscent of a fresh-from-the-oven brownie. Its flavor reminded me somewhat of ganache.
The bacon and cheddar biscuit was moist with just a bit of crumble to its texture.
As I sampled the ice cream sandwiches, I wondered to myself, "where else can you get delicious house-made ice cream between two fresh-baked, awesome, cookies?" Both were aptly named and a delight to eat.
The nitro cold brew on tap had a head of foam on it and a rich, bold flavor. This is a must try for coffee addicts.
Menu highlights beyond what I tried: Usually one or two cupcake varieties are made daily, but you have to be an early bird to get them. A cold brew float made with nitro cold brew and vanilla bean ice cream sprinkled with Jacobsen coffee sea salt sounds incredibly satisfying.
Hand pies are made with hand-rolled pie dough filled with farm-fresh, seasonal fruits.
Atmosphere: The light, modern decor is both attractive and streamlined. Treat removed its indoor seating to create more production space behind the counter, transforming the business into a grab-and-go bakery. It was a worthwhile sacrifice for the numerous options now available beyond just cupcakes.
Other observations: The excellence in producing quality items extends to every aspect of the bakery. Unlike many bakeries where workers and surfaces sport a layer of flour dust, Treat does not have this stereotypical characteristic. In my opinion, this makes the goodies even more appealing.
Cost: Hand pies and tarts are $4. A seasonal, 9-inch special order pie is $29. Cupcakes are $3.25. Ding Dongs are $4. Cookies cost $2.50 each. Bars cost $3. Jar cookies are $1.50. Biscuits and scones are $3 and $3.25. Coffee cake and loaf selections are $3. A cold-brew float costs $5.50. A single scoop is $3.50, and for $5 you may combine vanilla ice cream with a warm chocolate chip cookie. Ice cream sandwiches cost $4.50.
Hours: 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday; 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Happy Hour, when you can purchase a cold brew of coffee and a cookie for $5, is 2 to 4 p.m.
Where: 210 W. Evergreen Blvd., Vancouver.
Health score: Treat received a score of 7 on Oct. 18. Zero is a perfect score, and Clark County Public Health closes restaurants with a score of 100 or higher. For information, call 360-397-8428.