For Tracy Casavant, owner and founder of The Bittersweet Shoppe, life was once pretty bitter. She was overwhelmed, grieving, and feeling betrayed and alone; however, her faith and passion for personal growth motivated her to start selling homemade dog treats at a local farmers market. In 2018, she started her business, the Bittersweet Homestead, eventually buying a food truck and several lemonade carts. In 2020, she brought her retro soda fountain and café, The Bittersweet Shoppe, to Newbury Street.

About the Bittersweet Shoppe

Opening the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic made life a little more bitter than sweet for Tracy and her business. Not only was it a time of political and social unrest, but the restaurant faced a delayed opening, financial hurdles, and COVID-19 restrictions. People were in quarantine, businesses were forced to shut down, and the restaurant got robbed after only a month of being open. However, thanks to Tracy’s perseverance, The Bittersweet Shoppe on Newbury is now fully open. 

Audrey Tumbarello

The café is quaint and inviting. The yellow umbrellas, sunflowers, and orange pumpkins on each table brought a smile to my face. As I walked inside the shoppe, the vintage interior made me feel at home. A wooden lemonade stand and the smell of coffee—not to mention the friendly employees—flood the café with a sense of comfort. 

The menu

The menu features comfort food with a twist. There's an endless array of sweet and savory options such as grilled cheese, hot dogs, soups, sandwiches as well as pastries and cookies. A Boston Baked Bean Dog, a blueberry grilled cheese, coconut pound cake, a breakfast banana split, a giant twisted bavarian pretzel, and maple bacon fried dough are only a few of the unique items on the menu.

Audrey Tumbarello

I decided to try the caramel apple grilled cheese and caramel apple fried dough. First to arrive at my table was the caramel apple grilled cheese. To be honest, when I ordered this dish, I expected it to either be one of the best things that I have ever eaten or one of the worst—and it turned out to be nothing short of delicious. The toasted sourdough bread, warm, gooey, cheesy center, and sweet apple pie filling melted onto my tongue. It was sweet, salty, and perfect for the season.

Audrey Tumbarello

Next was the caramel apple fried dough. The fried dough, flattened into a circle and split into four sections, was covered with powdered sugar, apple pie filling, and caramel. The fluffy, warm dough and the sweetness of the apples and caramel filled my mouth with joy. 

Whether you're looking for a small treat to satisfy your sweet tooth or a mouthwatering, flavorful, and filling breakfast or lunch The Bittersweet Shoppe is the perfect stop. Even if your life is bitter at the moment, go out and try the sweetness that the shoppe has to offer!