Best Baklava - 2007
As the novice pastry chef will quickly learn, phyllo, a.k.a. the flaky part of baklava, is the temperamental genius of the baking world. Working with the difficult dough can be quite frustrating: Is it moist enough? Is it too moist? Is it chilled? Or should it be a little less chilled? And don't even get us started on the layers.... But instead of trying to please the persnickety phyllo, just go to Al-Tarboush Deli. At this Lebanese bodega, three gorgeous kinds of homemade baklava wait to make your hands sticky with honey and your belly happy with rich goodness. (The walnut variety is our favorite, but the almond and pistachio are pretty sweet as well.) They're priced to move at about a buck per piece, discounted if you want an entire tray.