Patricia Nilsen recommends the house-made prosciutto sticks at Sweet Life. Pat Hoey vouches for the buttery cookies. And Nancy Brain enjoys fresh, handmade Kaiser rolls and scones. Yet the women agree that part of their love for Sweet Life comes also for its owners, Grace and Gene Provenzano.
South Beach natives Grace and Gene are high school sweethearts. They established The Sweet Life in November of 2016 and Gene built out the store’s interior himself. The couple takes pride in using Staten Island-made ingredients including those from Egger’s Ice Cream Parlor in West Brighton and cheeses crafted at Joe Mozz in Port Richmond.
Specialities of the bake house are cookies — black and whites, butter-toffee, red velvet and varieties of biscotti including anisette — plus Linzer tarts. Gluten-free selections and custom sugar cookies also are popular. There are a few tables at which to nosh on bagels or fresh pastries like cannoli, crumb cake and muffins. Sweet Life makes its own sourdough, Italian bread and soft rolls. To keep things exciting for the regulars, Gene presents occasional delicacies such as chocolate, Asiago and cranberry loaves plus sopresatta-cheese sticks.
To see more of what’s coming from The Sweet Life’s kitchen check out The Dish this week. And play along with Name That Restaurant! on Friday, June 27 at 11:30 a.m. with Richie Holmes from Juicy Lucy. That is the final installment of a show sponsored by the Ocean Breeze barbecue restaurant. On Wednesday, June 30, there will be a “Farewell Party” to Bruno’s NYC Bakery which will serve its final day on Forest Avenue on July 3, a show broadcast on the Staten Island Advance Facebook platform.
The Sweet Life is located at 1676 Victory Blvd., Castleton Corners; 718-727-CAKE, SweetLifeVakeShopsSI. It opens Tuesday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
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