If you haven't gone to Pacific Puffs yet, Cow Hollow's newest corner sweetshop, I forgive you: it's been open less than a month. But if you don't go after reading this, you're missing out big time.
Pacific Puffs, on the corner of Union and Fillmore, serves only cream puffs but they are perfect cream puffs. They have several varities; alas, I've only tried one since I visited on a Sunday evening and they were cleaned out of nearly everything. We were lucky enough to snag the last three Chocolatier Sugar puffs, a choux pastry filled with a dollop of whipped chocolate cream goodness. My girlfriend Erin and I happily bought the last three for a fair $9, and we took our first bites while still in the shop.
The pastry is somewhere between brioche (but less eggy) and croissant (but less flaky) and heaven (but minus the prerequisite good behavior). The chocolate whipped cream is what the Puritans were worried about; it's so lightly chocolate it doesn't feel like a sin. I can't wait to go back and try the classic puff with vanilla cream or the fruit puffs as well. Trent, holler at your girl when you come up with more varieties!
Due to ridiculous zoning restrictions in San Francisco, Pacific Puffs actually bakes their pastries off-site and brings their goodies in the morning every day. This fact works well in their favor, since I would have climbed in the back of the shop with a spoon looking for more whipped chocolate cream- that's how good it is.
The off-site bakery issue only becomes a problem when you have a sweet tooth on Sunday afternoon at 5pm and they can't throw a couple more in the oven for you (my predicament exactly).
I have to say the second best thing about Pacific Puffs (after how crazy yummy good they are) is how light they are. I didn't see a nutritional breakdown on these babies so I can't make any dietary claims, but they don't have the heavy feel of ice cream or cupcakes. A chocolate cupcake with three cubic inches of frosting can leave me feeling like I've torpedo'ed an entire day of sensible eating. Pacific Puffs don't give you that feeling. About the size of your palm, a cream puff is, as the name suggests, a puff. It's airy, it's light. Go to town, girl!
It's the best dessert you can grab, because it satisfies the craving without overwhelming you. I suppose if you want to be overwhelmed, they do come by the dozen.
2201 Union, corner at Fillmore