We put eight of Bangkok’s finest bread-makers to a blind taste test.
A.) Conkey’s (B120)
This one’s the longest baguette on the list, if that matters to you. Even so, it has nice even lines without foregoing the home-baked look. Overall, a bit too chewy with a slightly metallic aftertaste.
Verdict: Don’t bite off more than you can chew.
72 Ekkamai Soi 22, 083-040-5911. www.fb.com/Conkeys-Bakery
B.) Pain Maison (B100) Runner Up!
This small producer makes bread to-order and appears at foodie markets from time to time. The homemade components shine in a nutty smell with slightly burnt notes, together with a yeasty inner.
Verdict: All hail the underdog.
Order at 094-230-9260 or www.fb.com/PainMaisonBangkok
C.) Maison Jean Philippe (B70)
The shortest and widest of the lot, this baguette also looks the least baked. Appearances don’t lie, either; this is spongy and soft compared to the others, and while the bread has nice irregular bubbles inside, it lacks aroma.
Verdict: Suited to white-bread graduates.
Available at Villa Markets on Sukhumvit Rd. or order from www.passiondelivery.com. Contact the bakery at 092-780-9610 or www.fb.com/MaisonJeanPhilippe
D.) Amantee (B85) Runner Up!
A bit darker than most, this baguette has a seductive, slightly-burnt aroma. The crust is crisp without being a jawbreaker, while the fluffy inner is packed with flavor.
Verdict: Gone before you know it.
2240/12 Chan Kao Rd., 081-814-0920. www.fb.com/amanteebkk
E.) Paul (B75) BK Pick!
The rustic and nicely-brown look matches the aroma of well-fermented bread. The fantastic crisp crust delivers a rewarding crack when you break into it, while the grayish inner is packed with delicious flavors, including slightly sour notes. It’s pleasantly chewy, too.
Verdict: Frankly, we’re surprised. And the price is pretty amazing for its size.
1/F, Central Embassy, 1031 Phloen Chit Rd., 02-001-5160. Open daily 8:30am-10pm. BTS Phloen Chit
F.) La Baguette (B80) Yuck!
You can tell right away this is an industrial baguette just by the oh-so-perfect shape. The inside is dry and bright white in color—which explains the dull taste. The crust is stiff rather than crisp.
Verdict: All the charm of stale bread.
G/F, Emquartier, 693 Sukhumvit Rd., 02-003-6420
G.) Maison Eric Kayser (B80)
This Parisian bread-master’s signature Baguette Mongue comes complete with sharp tips. Aesthetics aside, it doesn’t stand out beside the offerings from Paul and Amantee. The crust lacks texture and the inside is a bit too floury.
Verdict: Stick to their croissants.
103/1 Sukhumvit Soi 55 (Thonglor), between Sois 3-5, 02-712-9070. Open daily 7:30am-10pm. www.fb.com/MaisonEricKayserThailand
H.) Ciao Pane (B80)
This familiar farmers’ market name’s bread has a nice moist and spongy inner. But it’s all a bit too chewy, thanks to an elastic crust.
Verdict: Keep chewin’.
Ramkhamhaeng Soi 21, 081-647-1777. www.ciaopane.com
Note: All breads were eaten on the day of purchase.