Bon Vivant's written and pictorial diary of her culinary adventures that will amuse and excite your virtual taste buds...

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Paris Baguette

Dear Reader, as of late I've been having car problems, dog problems, and not surprisingly, brain problems; thus, this week we have another guest blogger! Here is Raven's review of my favorite bakery in Los Angeles, Paris Baguette:

My Culinary Adventures Goes to Paris (sort of)

I haven't been to Paris myself. Maybe someday I'll go. But in the meantime I'm told by a reliable source (namely, Bon V.) that the pastries at Paris Baguette are nearly as good as you'd find in Paris.

A visit to Paris Baguette starts out with a feast for the nose. The bakery is tucked away off a small parking lot around First & Western. The upside to this location is that you can park in the lot when you go, assuming there's room. The downside is that if you don't park in the lot, it's hard to find the door to the bakery, even after you've found the address from the street. But once you do locate the door, which will probably be open if the weather is warm, you'll immediately know you're in the right place. Because the heavenly smell of baking pastries will waft out and surround you.

Paris Baguette is apparently part of a Korean chain that has opened up shop in the United States. They bake throughout the day, and outside they post a signboard listing which items will be coming out when. This means that whatever you buy is going to be fresh. And if you see something that looks appetizing, snap it up on the spot, because an hour later it will probably be gone, and someone else's taste buds will be enjoying it instead of yours.

Part of the charm of Paris Baguette is that it's a feast for all the senses. In fact, in some ways I'd say the smell and presentation of their baked goods is even more important than how they taste. Everything they makes looks gorgeous. Check out these beauties (not mine, by the way):

The bakery isn't large, but there's room inside for a display case filled with cakes, and on the opposite wall you'll find help-yourself bins full of reasonably-priced pastries. Basically, you grab a box and a pair of tongs and help yourself.

I helped myself to the following: a rice flour doughnut (sweet sugar coating but a bit bland), a pastry with green pea filling (yes, the vegetable), a banana cream pastry (it was heavenly), and some kind of pastry stick with black seeds. Bon V. told me what this was when she recommended it, but I promptly forgot (Editor's Note: it's like a sweet potato croissant dough twisty thingy).

Meanwhile I was maneuvering my way past the staff in white hats and aprons who were busy restocking the bins and helping customers. In addition to sweets, Paris Baguette also offers savory options, which I will be sampling when I go back sometime soon.

So if you're craving French pastries and you don't feel like going all the way to Paris to get them, head over to Koreatown in Los Angeles and pick some up.

Paris Baguette
125 N. Western Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90004

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Anonymous The Cooking Ninja said...

Thanks for the tips. The last time we were down in LA about 2 years ago, we tried looking for some nice French bread but couldn't find any. Now we know.

1:35 AM


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