At the new Mia Supermarket, the first thing you'll smell when you walk through the doors is the yeasty aroma from Formosa Cake, which has set up in the front of the store (cue Admiral Ackbar: "It's a trap
!"). We asked one of the cashiers at the bakery which are the most popular pastries, so you'll know which to get when you come in next time (clockwise from top):
Super-soft brioche sprinkled with powdered matcha and sugar, filled with sweet red beans and cheese.
Cheese and hot dog bun:
Afternoon snacking doesn't get better, especially if you're into tube meat. It's a hot dog cradled in brioche and topped with browned cheese.
Garlic and hot dog bun:
A beautiful dough braid threaded with hot dogs and brushed with garlic, parsley and butter. Pulls apart like monkey bread. It's pizzeria-meets-ball park.
Flaky and buttery, filled with a slightly sweet rice paste. Painted with egg yolk (for color) and sprinkled with sesame seed. Called "wife cake" in China, since it's what new brides made for their hubbies.
Pineapple and taro bun:
Sweet brioche filled with taro and pineapple paste, topped with slivered almonds. Most popular bun, according to the staff.
2415 E. Colonial Drive
One of the spoils of the French occupation of Southeast Asia and China in the early-to-mid-19th and -20th centuries is the incredible baked goods that now flow from the region. If you've spent any time in the Mills 50 district, you've probably seen bakeries (and corners of the Asian supermarkets) with pastry cases full of sponge cakes, brioche buns and laminated pastries with roots in French baking but infused with decidedly Eastern flavors.