Location: 1636 Bayview Avenue, Toronto
Though I’m not entirely sure that this stretch of Bayview particularly needed another fancy French bakery (Patisserie la Cigogne is just a few stores down, and Rahier Patisserie is, according to Google, a one minute walk away), but sure, why not? If the area can sustain multiple French patisseries, then go for it, particularly if the pastries are as tasty as they seem to be here.
I tried a couple of things. The first was a ham and cheese quiche in a croissant-like crust. I don’t think anyone is going to lose their mind over this one, but aside from the pastry being a bit soggy, it’s rich and creamy, and it has a good amount of ham and cheese.
I also tried the pistachio croissant, which was a clear winner — the croissant was buttery, flaky, and delicious, and the generous pistachio filling was sweet without being overwhelming.
My only complaint is that it didn’t have a particularly strong pistachio flavour (I’m guessing there’s a mix of almonds and pistachios), but the combo of the top-notch croissant and nutty filling was so tasty that it doesn’t particularly matter.
Location: 172 Baldwin Street, Toronto
You win some and you lose some.
I just tried the almond croissant from Blackbird Baking Co. On one hand, the croissant itself is fantastic; it’s lightly crispy on the outside, satisfyingly buttery, and has an absolutely perfect texture. The exterior crispiness is maybe a bit too subtle, but for the most part it’s one of the better croissants I’ve had in the city.
But the almond part of this almond croissant is disappointingly anemic. Almond croissants are traditionally stuffed and topped with almond paste; the paste on top gets crispy and caramelized, and the paste inside is gooey and sweet.
That’s how it’s supposed to be, at least. Here, on the other hand, the layer on top was so thin that it may as well not have even been there, and it was filled with a crumbly, dry almond mixture that had almost no sweetness. It’s not at all what it’s supposed to be.
I get wanting to put your own spin on a classic, but if you’re going to do that, maybe make sure that your new creation actually tastes good?
Still, the croissant itself is so amazing that it basically doesn’t matter. Just don’t expect anything particularly sweet or almondy.
Location: 1626 Bayview Avenue, Toronto
I don’t have much to say about the almond croissant at Patisserie la Cigogne other than that it was delicious and you should eat it.
It was really good, though.
I mean, almond croissants are just generally great; if they’re done well, they’re an amazing combo of crunchy, crispy, buttery, and sweet. And I honestly can’t remember the last time I had one this good — the croissant was flaky and super buttery, and there’s a very generous amount of the sweet almond filling.
I mean, look at all that filling that’s oozed out and become crunchy and caramelized. The best. There’s also a generous amount of filling inside the croissant that’s nutty and creamy and sweet. Also the best.
(The whole thing was pretty much the best, so like I said earlier, you should probably go eat one.)