One of the great passions of my life is food. Especially cake. I have always loved cake. There are photographs of me as a small lad enthusiastically eating cakes: not neatly, but such are the side effects of passion.
My favorite cakes are made by Fremont Bakery. There may be some prejudice behind this statement, as Fremont Bakery is located a few miles from me, but it’s still saying something significant. I’ve travelled to several places, and usually my travels have involved trips to local bakeries. Fremont Bakery is still my favorite.
Fremont Bakery, started a little over fifty years ago, was originally located in Fremont. With Fremont Cleaners, it was located on Route 290, the main road of Fremont. Tony Fallico, the owner of Fremont Bakery, remembers when Route 290 was unpaved and muddy.
Fremontis located about eight miles east ofSyracuse, New York. I recently looked at books on the history of the Town of Manlius, Fremont’s township, and saw barely a mention of Fremont. Fremont is what they called a community. It never was made a village. It had no post office. Years ago it consisted of apple orchards running alongside the railroad lines between East Syracuse and Minoa. Later houses were built over the orchards, but Fremont remained, in the eyes of many, a name between destinations.
Yet in Fremont I grew up, and here I had family and friends. Here also were traditions, such getting cakes from Fremont Bakery. My father always bought the family birthday cakes there.
Fremont Bakery caught fire about forty years ago, and the business moved to a building located near the train tracks of East Syracuse. This move did not stop my father from continuing to buy its cakes. The traditions continues, and my family members to this day get their birthday cakes from Fremont Bakery. Other families have been no different. Brides who had their wedding cakes from Fremont Bakery are now arranging for their granddaughters’ wedding cakes to be made by Mr. Fallico.
There are two main reasons for the continued popularity of this bakery in the East Syracuse-Fremont area. One is the friendliness of the staff members who greet you when you walk into the bakery. The second is, of course, the tastiness of its cakes and pastries. Mr. Fallico will have nothing to do with fondant, the current fad in cake decorating. Fondant is all about show, and nothing about taste. It violates one of the first principles of food, which is that food must taste good. The frosting at Fremont Bakery is buttercream, and this is for the best.
The doughnuts there are also excellent. My wife and I still stop occasionally at Fremont Bakery to buy doughnuts. My wife recently stopped there with her sister one such excursion. They spoke with Mr. Fallico, who remembered my father stopping there years ago to pick up the respective birthday cakes of me and my brothers.
Mr. Fallico may have to close the bakery soon. He is now older, and has no relative willing to assume the duties of running a bakery. It’s hard for me to imagine birthdays without Fremont Bakery cakes.
The Greek philosopher Heracleitus said that change is the ruling principle of life. Some changes are harder to wrestle with than others.