With the holiday season just around the corner, and dreary winter weather sure to follow, now is the time to turn our thoughts to things that make us happy, to dwell on the sweet side of life and cherish that which warms our hearts and our bellies. I’m talking about cake.

At Point Ruston’s authentic Sicilian bakery and café, Dolce Si, the end of the season for gelato doesn’t mean they don’t have more to offer. Rather their terrific team of bakers, led by owner Elisabetta O’Shea, are hard at work crafting the most delicious masterpieces of edible art so that the good people of South Sound may have a cake for any occasion.

Dolce Si Gelato Cake
Gelato Cake: a Sicilian take on an American favorite! Photo courtesy: Dolce Si.

At Dolce Sí, making Sicilian style desserts is something they take very seriously, from the flaky pastry to the aromatic cappuccino—and the cakes are no exception. In Palermo, the capital of the Italian island of Sicily, cakes known as Cassata are the delicacy of choice: round sponge cake soaked in Amaretto liqueur syrup, with a lightly sweetened ricotta cheese, candied orange peel and chocolate chip filling. On top of all that is a shell of almond marzipan decorated with candied fruit and beautiful royal icing piping, all arranged in such a way that it looks almost too beautiful to eat…almost.

If cassata doesn’t sound like the sweet for you, worry not. Just come on down to Dolce Si and give the display case a look to discover Sicilian Ricotta Mascarpone Cheesecake, Tiramisu, Mimosa Cake, Chocolate Black Forest Cake, Gluten-Free Fresh Berries and Cream Cake, Lemon Coconut Vegan Cake, Gelato Cake and many more. It is impossible not to be impressed by the artistry on every cake that comes out of this Sicilian kitchen. The twirls of cream are perfect pirouettes and the glazed cakes look like they belong in the Museum of Glass.

Sicilian Cakes
Too pretty to eat? You should at least cut into it to see the layers… Photo courtesy: Dolce Si.

Of course, anyone who has been in Dolce Si already—whether lured in by the heavenly smells while catching a movie at Century Cinemas or lucky enough to live in the constantly expanding Point Ruston community—knows that there is so much more than cake here as well, and it all would be a hit at Thanksgiving, Christmas, or any family gathering.

How about a holiday special: crostata di frutta (traditional baked fruit tart) Dolce Si style? Whisky chantilly cream, cinnamon green apples topped with Nutella or caramel sauce! Or even a platter of assorted cookies, pastries and freshly baked rustic breads to make sure that even the pickiest eaters in your family can find something they like!

Elisabetta is extremely proud of her product and everything her café has become, but her reason for beautifully crafted baked goods is more practical than whimsical.

Dolce Si Tacoma
Is this is a Chihuly installation? Nope! Just a couple of amazing glazed fruit filled cakes. Photo courtesy: Dolce Si.

“People eat with their eyes first,” she adds.

Luckily there is some serious deliciousness behind the beautiful façade of each cake, so your mouth will be as satisfied as your eyes! Visit Point Ruston to try a slice for yourself and then place your order for a whole cake and other treats before the holidays. The bakers at Dolce Si are accepting orders for the December holidays, featuring freshly baked Panettone.

Customers love not only the beauty of Dolce Si’s cakes, but also the uniqueness. Read through Yelp reviews or comments on Dolce Si’s Facebook page and you’ll find plenty of people delighted by these tasty treats.

Crostata: an old recipe made with whisky cream, ornately decorated, and nicely labeled! Photo courtesy: Dolce Si

“I decided to come here and grab a cake for my daughter’s birthday,” says one review on Yelp. “They had a few different gelato cakes available to purchase and I decided to go with the mango pomegranate one. It was a nice change from the typical ice cream cakes that you would get from like Baskin Robbins or Coldstone. The cake was composed of a layer of mango gelato and pomegranate gelato with a small layer of cake on the bottom. I thought it was a perfect combination.”

And of course, the café is still open seven days a week, so step out of the chilly weather for a cappuccino break!

Dolce Si is located in Point Ruston at 5005 Main Street #105, Tacoma, WA 98407. For more information or to order cakes or other baked goods, visit Dolce Si’s website or call 253-292-0172. You can also follow the bakery on Facebook.