Started 40 years ago in Glendale, Porto’s has since become not only the quintessential immigrant success story, but also a Southern California institution. The cheese rolls are always ethereal and crisp; the potato balls, soft and fragrant of cumin. But the real reason everyone waits in line at the Buena Park location (or heck, every branch) is because of how low its prices are. Where else can you get a birthday cake that serves a dozen people for less than $25 that actually tastes good? In fact, Porto’s has become so prevalent and beloved for those cakes that it would be strange to encounter a birthday party without one. And it’s for this reason that Porto’s may be the best bakery of our generation.
7640 Beach Blvd., Buena Park, (714) 367-2030; www.portosbakery.com.
Readers’ Choice: Porto’s Bakery & Cafe