Disclaimer: In exchange for this review, I received a ticket to the 2016 Baguette Battle New York.
The first of its kind…in New York. Brought to us by the French-American news site French Morning and hosted at the Midtown Sofitel on January 21, I had no idea how the event was going to play out…besides the usual mosh pit atmosphere.
Some background: various boulangeries – bakeries and other markets submitted two simple baguettes and one eccentric baguette to be deemed the best in New York. I didn’t expect to see Fairway (a local supermarket chain) and Le Pain Quotidien (a Belgium-based bakery chain) competing alongside likelier entrants such as Eric Kayser and Bien Cuit.
The joys of being part of the press…but the minder downstairs didn’t let me know until five minutes before the general public made their way.
If you really needed to ask, yes, I like bread, greatly so. All of the samples that I tried were quite good, but what I was craving – next door – was an olive oil battle. That would’ve been boss.
As for Eric Kayser, 1) they were one of the winners last night, and 2) in Japan, they had a very nice yuzu-flecked bread which I couldn’t resist.
Amy’s Bread, with three locations in the Tristate area, had this unusual addition to the show. Fennel has grown on me, and golden raisins may have too.
Le District’s market is underwhelming, but I’ll give them credit for the seasonal pecan cranberry roll.
The judges, doing what everyone else was doing, just on a stage.
D’Artagnan sponsored cheese, a charcuterie tray and cornichons.
I mistakenly thought butter was a slice of brie.
I was full even before entering the room.
Upon closer inspection, I should’ve made that a haiku. Anyway, merci beaucoup, French Morning!
How does a bread-focused food event sound to you?
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