By Gus Saltonstall
In a piece of Upper West Side pride, local Loretta Lee not only earned a place in the Museum of the City of New York’s (MCNY) Second Annual “Gingerbread NYC: The Great Borough Bake-Off,” but she won the Best of Manhattan prize for her rendition of the American Museum of Natural History.
The MCNY invited 23 bakers from across the five boroughs to create gingerbread displays on the theme of “Iconic New York.” A panel of prominent New York City-based bakers, curators, and restaurant owners then awarded prizes in a variety of categories.
The gingerbread creations will be on display at the MCNY, between 103 and 104 on Fifth Avenue, through January 15.
“Home baker Loretta Lee has always loved to bake and cook, and has enjoyed exploring the different cuisines of the city since moving from Italy many years ago,” the blurb for Lee’s gingerbread creation reads. “Loretta brings to this competition experience honed through annual family traditions of Christmas gingerbread house making, always a multi-day affair to plan, bake, and decorate.”
Lee, who works as a real estate agent, told West Side Rag that as a longtime Upper West Side resident, she “chose to represent the neighborhood by baking a gingerbread version of the American Museum of Natural History.”
The structure took her over 60 hours to create and is made up of 75 pieces of gingerbread.
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