Simply Unforgettable

Belinda Baptiste bakes delicious goods while supporting community

UNFORGETTABLE Bakery & Cafe acquired its name from a patron who felt the food was just, well, unforgettable. But I think it more appropriately represents the owner of the longtime Savannah institution, Belinda Baptiste.

If you have spent any time at her shop or her stand at the Forsyth Farmers Market, you’ll understand exactly what I mean. Baptiste’s passion is food, and through her food she has been making our community better for quite some time.

With 11 years of success, Unforgettable has shared its fortune through the implementation of several community outreach programs. During Thanksgiving, the Cafe hosts a growing event which provides a home-cooked meal to those less fortunate; Unforgettable even gets a bus to drive the guests to the Cafe.

One program, Unforgettable Dream Kids, supports kids in the community by helping to fulfil their summer camp wishes.

Baptiste is even working towards setting up a new program that will support the needs of a selected area family. She is calling it the “Unforgettable Dream Fund.”

“I want to make a difference in the life of one person or one family at a time. Maybe that one family will one day help someone else. That’s what I want to do, to give back. Giving back doesn’t have to be a lot, you just have to be the leader where you are placed,” Baptiste tells me as I chat with her at the bakery.

The passion and care that Baptiste puts into the community is the same passion and care she puts into her food. If you taste her cakes, you’ll know exactly what I mean.

The local cafe is more of a take-and-go since the seating is quaint. A large display sits next to the register, which houses rows of homemade cake slices, cupcakes, cheesecakes, cookies, and breads. You can also find rows of the same baked goods every Saturday morning at the Market.

Everything is made from scratch, a process that resulted in the addition of original homemade drinks to Unforgettable’s menu.

The Ginger Beer is traditionally a Jamaican drink rather than a Haitian one, which is the reason why Baptiste didn’t add it to the menu originally. After enough requests, she learned the technique and made her own version.

The Rosemary Limeade is a recipe that originated while preparing for a summer party. Baptiste had a plethora of rosemary, so she threw it into the refreshments to serve at her party.

Because it was the hit of the gathering, she decided to add it to the menu at Unforgettable.

For lunch you can choose from a well rounded selection of soups, wraps, and sandwiches. Quiche is available too.

Although Baptiste is Haitian, her food is not fully traditional. Instead, she takes the vibrant flavors of her culture and adds them to the cafe’s food.

The Griot wrap is the signature dish for her style of cooking. The wrap was created to please customers seeking the Haitian food Baptiste grew up with.

“It is a wrap that has Griot, a fried pork. And, it has plantain in it. It is just so amazing,” she says.

“People say, ‘Oh my gosh, I feel like my mouth is having a party.’”

The party results from plantains, lettuce, cucumbers, pickles, onions, peppers, and a homemade dressing.

As a baker myself, I was surprised at how balanced Unforgettable’s cake is, which is a difficult task for even the most skilled bakers.

“People know us for our cakes,” is one of the first things Baptiste tells me when I ask about her baked goods. I’d be just as, if not more, proud to have any of the delicate slices of crumbly cake represent my business.

The lime cake is one of the most popular flavors. It reminded me of those lime flavored taffies I ate as a child. The crumb itself is pillowy, slightly dense in the right way, and extremely moist.

The icing is as smooth as silk and more buttery than sweet. The balance of each cake comes from the not-too-sweet icing.

Each type of cake—carrot, butter, caramel, and more—is just as moist and well balanced as the last. You can order any cake as gluten free, eggless, or vegan.

“I have two cookies that I was brought up with—one is vegan and one is gluten free. When I was a little kid we used to eat them. That was what we used to eat. The vegan cookie, I never knew they were vegan. That is what we had,” Baptiste explains.

Molasses and ginger make up the soft, cake-like vegan cookies. Baptiste added turmeric as her own twist to the childhood favorite. The Bonbon Amidon is the gluten free option. A Bonbon Amidon is made with a tapioca flour base that is flavored with lime zest and a few other additions.

Baptiste learned to bake through practice and reading, but she has soared as a baker because of her love of the craft. Like so many other bakers, the ability to share food with everyone else is the source of her desire to bake and the desire to continue to learn.

Baptiste is currently working towards expanding the bread options. Brioche, sourdough, and baguettes are some of the bread she has already crafted.

She learned to make bread through a friend and member of a French club of which she is a part. It was a successful sell in the past, and she decided to innovate it some more and sell it again.

If you want to try any of her new bakes, like a rustic rosemary loaf (or any of her tried and true classic bakes), stop by her shop off of Eisenhower Drive.