We almost left B. Patisserie without trying its signature item – the Kouign Amann. That would have been a shame, but it didn’t happen since we grabbed one for the road.
The Breton pastry features buttery puff pastry layers surrounding a surprising liquid sugar center. It’s buttery heaven on the outside with sugary pleasure in the inside. The Kouign Amann alone more than justifies a visit to Brenda Leong’s bakery in San Francisco’s Lower Pacific Heights. In our opinion, B. Patisserie is the closest thing we have to the legendary Pierre Hermé on our native shores, and to that we were appreciative. In fact, Leong’s experience includes a stage at Hermé along with stints at Gary Danko and Manresa.
We had heard about B. Patisserie and knew that we wanted to check it out during our recent trip to San Francisco. Since we were staying at the Kimpton Triton next to Chinatown, we were about two miles away. For us, that was a perfect distance for a morning walk. Far enough to get our juices going and work up an appetite, but not too far to walk for breakfast.
We needed the energy-burning walk, as there were so many delicious, calorie-laden treats to select from at the charming spot. In addition to flaky croissants, tarts and brioche-based pastries, there was a fine selection of sophisticated desserts on display – from miniature layer cakes to shimmering chocolate ganache domes, fruit verrines and Hermé inspired grand macarons.
We didn’t know what to order when we first entered the charming, 25-seat café. The choices were plentiful and tempting. We chose three treats to share. Plus, we each got a café au lait made with Four Barrel Coffee, a popular local coffee roaster.
We then shared the three pastries – a sugar brioche tart with seasonal berries and vanilla cream, a miniature German kugeloph bundt cake and a vanilla mille feuille.
We enjoyed our treats and coffee in the tasteful dining room. The room is comfortable, but not too comfortable. (We found out that they don’t have free Wi-Fi because they don’t want people to overstay their visits.) Instead of surfing the net on our iPads, we instead focused on the conversation, not to mention the delicious pastries and coffee. From our table, we even got a front row view to a cool picture made of colored macarons.
In addition to the pastries and desserts, partner Michel Suas prepares baguettes and sandwiches. We abstained from the savory options since our afternoon plans included a super burrito. Yes, even 2foodtrippers have our food limits. We left B. Patisserie and embarked on a 75 minute walk to the Mission neighborhood. Our walk was sweetened by the Kouign Amann that we bought for the road. Full disclosure – the Kouign Amann didn’t make it past the first block.
B. Patisserie is located at 2821 California Street, San Francisco, CA 94115, USA.
Check out our other San Francisco meals: