Posted: Thursday, December 5, 2013 12:00 pm to Ladue News.com
By Brittany Nay
In the spirit of the season, Piccione Pastry is giving back: the late-night Italian bakery in the Delmar Loop is continuing its Pastries With a Purpose program to benefit six more local charities this December.
The shop donates 10 percent of its pastry sales to a different nonprofit on six designated days each June and December. From Dec. 10 to 15, the nonprofits benefiting from the shop’s sweet deal will be Nurses for Newborns, Marian Middle School, Food Outreach, Psi Chapter of Alpha Epsilon Phi at Washington University for Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Eastern Missouri and St. Patrick Center. “Our focus is to be able to give back to our community, and there’s never been a better time to do that than at Christmas. So many great nonprofits are part of the fabric of our community that takes care of people, and we want to help those who are less fortunate,” says Richard Nix, president of Butler’s Pantry, the catering company that owns Piccione. Among causes the program will support is Marian Middle School’s Educating Girls for Life, which provides economically disadvantaged girls with the skills and education they need to succeed in high school, college and beyond.
Any 501(c)(3) charity can apply for Pastries With a Purpose at piccionepastry.com, Nix notes. “We encourage this December’s beneficiaries to invite their friends to buy Piccione Pastry holiday sweets for parties, or stop in for a coffee, pastry or Frap-piccione.”
The Frap-piccione, a double shot of espresso blended with ice in vanilla, chocolate chip or caramel flavors, is among the bakery’s new seasonal menu items. Maple Walnut Cassata cake and Apple Cranberry Crostada pie also have been added for the holidays. “They are all handcrafted items that you won’t see anywhere else in St. Louis,” Nix notes. Another Italian tradition Piccione is bringing back for Christmas time is Panettone sweet bread. In addition, three seasonal cannolis are fresh out of the bakery: chocolate mint brownie, pumpkin spice, and Nix’s personal favorite, maple walnut.
Piccione also has extended its hours to meet customers’ sweet—and savory—fixes. The shop now opens at 9 a.m. every day except Monday, and remains open late—until 9 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Sunday and until 11 p.m. Thursday through Saturday. With its earlier hours comes new breakfast, lunch and light dinner offerings, including a breakfast frittata, and a $6 special: a house-made soup—Italian Minestrone or Tomato Bisque—and loaded focaccia, with asiago and prosciutto or roasted vegetables. “Our new lunch and dinner options are a great way to spend a winter’s afternoon before a show or shopping on Delmar,” Nix says.
And while the bakery has expanded its mission, Nix notes that its late-night single-serving sweets still take center stage, from its signature cannolis to other authentic Italian pastries, cookies, gelato and sorbet, as well as hot and cold Italian coffees and sodas.
ON THE COVER: Sweet treat sales at Piccione Pastry will benefit six local charities from Dec. 10 to 15. For more information, call 932-1355 or visit piccionepastry.com.