Are you ever in the mood for proper French goodies? Think warm bread, sweet cakes, tasty sandwiches… Can you think of anything better to cheer yourself up? Picking up warm croissants in the morning to surprise your loved ones on a lazy Sunday morning is one of those typical French habits, which are part of simple yet lovely pleasures.
We know it’s not all about the fresh bread, as there are also other specialties that are much harder to find in London than anywhere in Paris, but we want to make sure you pay that extra pound or two in places that are seriously worth it. It’s not that some of us here at TWC are from France and can’t get by without our typical breakfast (or is it?), but you’ve got to agree there’s no harm in a little treat every once in a while, especially when it comes straight out the oven!
Let me start with a popular and affordable choice, the Lille born family-based business: Paul. Some say their bread is even better outside of Paris (whether that’s due to high demand or not, we’re not sure). You can’t be disappointed with their traditional baguettes and their croissants and pains au chocolat are delicious. Good news is that Paul is spread out around London so there’s a fair chance you’ll find one nearby.
Now, a less common way of making bread is done at the Brick House Bread. This bakery specializes in sourdough bread, made with simple ingredients. Although they use San Francisco style methods, their recipes are simply perfect and worth the French comparison. They were listed in the top 3 bakeries in London in 2014 and have earned their popularity with many publications and awards.
Reshmi Bennett, the owner of Anges de Sucre, has trained in one of the most prestigious patisseries in Paris, and you can surely tell! Her cakes are insanely creative and off the roof crazy but we love it. Just imagine a towering cake filled with mouth-watering sweets and chocolate. This is the place to get a cake for a special occasion and please all the sweet teeth!
Another place worth mentioning for French cakes is Maison Bertaux. The Soho-based patisserie hasn’t moved concept or spot for over 100 years, so as you can imagine, they know how it’s done. Don’t come by just for a bite but spend an afternoon sitting in the café and enjoy the strawberry tarts and cakes served on trays. Sure, it’s much less extravagant than the cakes at Anges de Sucre, but you’ve got to admit, keeping it classic is always a good idea.
Best French Brunch
Although the brunch craze in London is mostly based around poached eggs and avocado, Orée in South Kensington introduces the French way to enjoy brunch. This includes freshly baked quiches, fruit salads, and waffles. If you’re not in the mood to brunch, you can still head over to the bakery and grab a cake or sandwich for the road!
Dominique Ansel’s bakery is the ultimate balance between French breakfast in a unique atmosphere. With a big open kitchen, the staff is delighted to share their specialties with you. These range from the highly popular cronut (the hybrid between a croissant and a donut), and the cookie dough shot (yum). In the summer you can also enjoy your cup of coffee in the quaint garden space!
And finally, who else is sick and tired of taste-less sandwiches that we grab on the go? In France, we make our sandwiches properly, with butter, great crunchy bread and delicious fresh produce. Don’t despair just yet as we found the perfect French sandwiches! Welcome to Aux Pains de Papy in West London. This bakery is what you could call a classic and simple French bakery which could easily be found anywhere else in rural France. Keep in mind, that there’s very limited seating.
Images: Brick house
If your mouth isn’t watering yet, we’re afraid there’s not much more we can do for you! Grab your coffee and croissants tomorrow morning and stay up-to-date with the most current world news with us on TWC.