After spending a week in Paris early last year, I became a croissant snob. Every morning I would of course eat a croissant for breakfast, on my last day there I ate two, and I even took a pastry class so I could learn how to make croissants myself. I ate all kinds of croissants – chocolate, plain, jam or apple filled. I was in heaven for that week and I didn’t hold myself back because why should you when you’re in Paris?
A week after I came back from Paris, I went to my local farmer’s market and bought a croissant to ease my withdrawal. It was a terrible croissant. Stale with no taste. The butter and the crispy flakes of dough that I became so used to were gone.
You would think I would attempt to make my own croissants at home after taking that class but it hasn’t happened yet. Instead I keep a running list of bakeries and patisseries in San Francisco to visit so that I can sample all the best confections the city has to offer. Crossing off bakeries on my to-eat list is a favorite pastime of mine.
One place on my list was B. Patisserie. I had heard so many good things about this place including a recommendation from David Lebovitz so I had a feeling I wouldn’t be disappointed. I decided to go on the morning of my birthday before my massage appointment which was nearby (I believe you should always treat yo self). It was a Friday morning so I thought it wouldn’t be crowded because everybody in San Francisco would be working, right? Wrong. It was jam-packed in there and every seat along the wall and windows were occupied. Crowds do not deter me from pastries. I ordered a chocolate banana almond croissant and a cappuccino and by the time I paid, a seat on the couch by a window was open. It was in between other patrons but I didn’t mind sitting with strangers.
My croissant was the best I’ve eaten outside Paris. It was so flaky I had to keep wiping myself to make sure I didn’t have crumbs all over my face and had to clean up the crumbs around my plate so I wouldn’t make a mess. The chocolate and banana gooey mess was spilling out of my croissant and every sip of cappuccino paired perfectly with each bite. All the while I kept watching the crowds mill about and go out and in as a professional photographer was documenting everything and snapping the staff as they hustled.
An elderly man came and sat down next to me and he ordered the same croissant I did and he said hello to me and we made a little small talk as I confirmed that the croissant we both ordered did indeed taste really good. I couldn’t help but think to myself how funny it was that here I sat on the morning of my 29th birthday stuffing my face with a croissant and chuckling with the old man sitting next to me. He wasn’t exactly the type of man I was hoping to share breakfast with on my birthday but I was happy all the same because I get pleasure out of the little things in life and one of those pleasures is crossing off another bakery on my list. After breakfast, I got that massage and then I bought myself a pair of bold blue pants at Jigsaw which made me happier than I would usually be about buying a new piece of clothing because as you may or may not know depending on your affinity for the royal family, Kate Middleton used to be an accessories buyer for Jigsaw in London so by buying those blue pants I feel that much more like the Duchess. Happy birthday to me!