You'll have a hard time ever leaving B. Patisserie, and you'll know why it's been an over night sensation in lower Pac Heights. The open, modern space feels like something you'd find in the Marais in Paris, and the fact that you can view the pastry-in-the-making magic, while you're deciding what to order- it a rare treat.
B. Patisserie is owned by head pastry chef Belinda Leong and her partner (and San Francisco Baking Institute founder) Michel Suas. Leong trained in Paris with Pierre Herme and has been a part of kitchens such as Gary Danko, Fouchon and Manresa. A colleague of mine (and an extraordinary pastry chef in her own right) suggested this location recently for a catch up with the girls and I have to admit I've been back way too many times since then.
Four Barrel coffee is also on hand to help you wash down the inevitable delicious delights, and with window seating as well as tables, it's the perfect place to catch up with friends.
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Modern French pastries with an American twist
Pastry Heaven in San Francisco's lower Pacific Heights neighborhood! Drawing on their vast experience working in both Paris and San Francisco bakeries, Belinda Leong and Michel Suas opened b.Patisserie in 2012. This is a place to seek out! The pastry specialty is the Kouign Amann . . . yum. Looking for lunch, order a tartine with a house salad. Everything is delicious. Go.
The pastries at B. Patisserie rival any that I've tasted in Paris. Surprising, I know!
You'll certainly find all the usual suspects that you'd expect to find in any good patisserie—croissants, baguettes, cookies, and coffee. But you'll also find lesser known specialties like bostock, kugelhopf, and kouign amman. This is where B. Patisserie really shines. You may walk in wanting a croissant, but you'll keep coming back for the kougin amman (pronounced "queen amann")—a carmelized croissant-like pastry that hails from Brittany
As I sat savoring mine at the small community table, the woman next to me caught my eye and marveled over the flaky sweetness of the pastry. She told me how she and her husband drive up from the South Bay every couple of weeks for breakfast and to bring a box home. It may sound a bit crazy to you as you read this, but then and there it didn't sound the least bit crazy to me!
What started as a pop up shop has now become quite a destination.
The Kouign (Amann) of Modern French Pastry in S.F.
Refined, modern, bright, classic, DELICIOUS. All of these adjectives come to mind when describing the open pastry kitchen and bright cafe at b.patisserie's location on California Street and Belinda Leong is the star of the show.
After spending 8 years at the San Francisco dining institution, Gary Danko, 2 years traveling and working in renown kitchens in Europe's great cities, and a handful of years at Manresa in Los Gatos, Leong leapt onto the pastry scene with a brand all her own.
Her Kouign Amann are legendary. Her seasonal macarons, a vision. Order one of everything in her case and sit down at a table near the window, cradling a bright yellow coffee cup and die the sweetest death. You'll leave your pastry heart in San Francisco for sure!
Let's get the pronunciation correct first: It's QUEEN AH-MAHN. Otherwise known as Kouign-Amann.
A ridiculously soft, flaky, crusty, buttery, sugary delicacy that floated down from its throne in Pastry Heaven right into b. patisserie in San Francisco's Lower Pacific Heights.
This, and only this, was the reason I walked into b. patisserie. Though the SF bakery does serve an assortment of other sweets -- including macarons, fruit tarts and creme brulee -- I was laser focused on the Kouign-Amann, and it did not disappoint.
Kouign-Amann is a Breton cake hailing from France. It's similar to a puff pastry and literally translates as "cake butter". But nevermind what a Breton cake is or its origins.
The Kouign-Amann I had came straight from the oven, still warm...steam rising from its glistening crust...melted sugar leaking from its sides...I gently stuck my fork in, careful not to raze its beautiful layers...and the rest is history.