By Becky Billingsley
Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012, Surfside Beach – Pink Pineapple is a new bakery in Surfside Beach serving delectable pastries, breads and sandwiches for extremely affordable prices.
Aura Fuenmayor recently opened the shop at 810 3rd Ave. S., and already locals are delightedly discovering her talents are immense and are overshadowed only by her friendliness. A native of Caracas, Venezuela, some of Fuenmayor’s baking has Hispanic influences, but there is also evidence in some treats of her seven years in England and from her current southern surroundings.
The former sub shop has been transformed into an attractive and cheerful café with pink, yellow, black and white furnishing. Fuenmayor is assisted at Pink Pineapple by her equally friendly daughters and partners, Kristin Mendible and Rebeca Kipp; her mother, Mercedes Fuenmayor; and by good friend Beverley Jones.
Display cases hold a rainbow of treats. Cupcakes are soft and spongy and topped with buttercream frosting, and they come in regular and miniature sizes. Cupcake flavors include chocolate, chocolate/peanut butter, vanilla, carrot, confetti, pineapple, strawberry and red velvet.
Fuenmayor also bakes conventionally sized cakes, as she was doing on Oct. 18. She had made one cake for daughter Rebeca Kipp’s birthday, but when a customer saw it and asked to buy it, Fuenmayor happily baked another.
Full-size cakes cost around $25, and those flavors include pineapple, chocolate, vanilla, red velvet, carrot, coconut, Dreamsicle (orange), strawberry torte and coffee. Survivor Cake is banana, chocolate and peanut butter; and Monkey’s Dream is banana cake with chocolate ganache and buttercream frosting.
Pound cakes are a specialty at Pink Pineapple with several flavors offered: Old Fashioned, Edna’s Coconut, Stalvey’s Cream Cheese, Chocolate, Eggnog (seasonal) and Sour Cream Streusel.
If someone wants to try a cake flavor before buying an entire cake, or if they just want a small dessert without wrecking their diet, Fuenmayor has Cake Shots in small cups. There are also miniature pastries and tarts, like cream puffs, eclairs and fruit tarts.
Pink Pineapple has pies like pecan and peach, cookies and bars such as pumpkin/chocolate, white chocolate/cranberry, peanut butter, chocolate chip, lemon iced, coconut snowball (seasonal), brownies, lemon bars, Whoopie Pies and sugar-free cookies.
Many breads, bagels, muffins, turnovers and Danish are sold. The Pink Pineapple ladies bake some artisan breads, and others are freshly baked at Benjamin’s Bakery, a wholesale bakery located behind Pink Pineapple.
While everything I tasted from the above categories were delicious, my favorite taste experience was from their menu section called International Delights. The grandmother of the group, Mercedes Fuenmayor, makes the best ceviche I’ve ever tasted. It contains mackerel, tuna, sardines, lemon and lime juices and crunchy diced bell peppers, and it has a creamy consistency.
They also have Meat Empanadas, Churros, sweet and savory Cuban pastries, Tequenos (bread with cheese in the middle), Tres Leches (three milks sponge cake) and, seasonally, Polvorosas (Venezuelan shortbread).
Lunch sandwiches can come on croissants or bagels, are priced $5-$7 and come with chips or slaw. They include The Earl of Sandwich with ham and Swiss; The Gobble Gobbler with turkey and Swiss; The Piglet with ham, bacon and Swiss; and Here’s the Beef with roast beef and Swiss. American and provolone cheeses are also available. They have a delicious house dressing that’s a sweet and savory cross between dressing and barbecue sauce they use on the sandwiches.
Aura Fuenmayor says many more treats are coming along with items that can be filled with goodies for gifts. She also encourages customers to make requests.
“Anything is fine,” she said, “or anything we can try and make well.”
As for her prices that are well below her competitors’, she says, “We’d rather sell more cakes at lower prices.”