C is for CRONUT
C in the city! For Cecelia’s first time in NYC, I couldn’t resist crafting her a little sign for her to hold while standing in the cronut line!
What is it about food buzz that would take a seemingly normal and logical (mostly) person and transport them to one who would stand in a four hour line for a pastry? For a foodie like myself it is like the “call of the wild” or like the draw of a full moon… its the O.M.G. of tasting the thing itself along with the excitement of the buzz, the chirp of tweeting and posting along… it’s really about the fun of the overall experience.
Nicole and I had been dreaming of trying Dominique Ansel’s cronut all summer long, but could not bear the idea of standing in the legendary, never ending line in a heat wave… so we waited. Patiently. Once the flavor of September was announced (Marscapone and fig! An Italian girl’s dream!), and Autumn weather debuted early we knew it was our time.
We packed up our little “foodie in training”, Cecelia, in her baby bjorn and made our way into the city (Cs first time by the way!) We had so much fun I couldn’t wait to share…
We arrived just before 7:30 a.m. and took our place on the Dominique Ansel bakery line that wrapped down the short block on Spring and turned the corner onto Thompson.
I couldn’t help but notice, its a very nice looking crowd on this line… some people more dressed up than others (you never know when the Satorialist might drive by on his bike!)
The clock strikes 8 and we know the bakery is open! It won’t be long now! (or so we think)
Just after 8, the line inches up a bit and a sweet Dominique Ansel bakery employee begins handing out warm madeleines to everyone in line.
Around 9:15/ 9:30 a.m. we turned the corner onto Spring St. The bakery is in sight. We note how long we have already been waiting but we also note ‘there’s no point in turning back now’.
C brilliantly decides to sit this portion of line waiting out by taking her morning nap.
A NYPD officer on horseback rides by and pauses near the bakery entrance. He has ‘not tried the cronut yet.’
I run into an old friend from RISD, the very talented Dicie Carlson, who mentioned she saw one of my posts about standing in line and assumed she would see me while she was walking to work. She mentioned she passes the cronut line every day.
Excitement mounts as the two ladies behind us in line are handed the foam baguette! This serves as a marker for the next cronut group allowed into the bakery. Here we are with Steven, a very nice guy who was on line directly front of us- also, a visitor from San Francisco! (When standing around for this many hours together, its great to get to know your fellow foodies!) It will be any minute now! (or so we think)
The inside bakery is long an narrow. We re form our line inside and the ladies behind us are asked to hold on to the foam baguette. We quickly find out why as two guys line up behind them who were not part of the original cronut line. They are quickly asked to get in the other non cronut line or at the end of the cronut line which is still out and around the block. Cronut line jumpers are not tolerated and Mr. Ansel does not discriminate. Even celebrities like Heidi Klum have to wait in line like everyone else! (There is a separate line in the front of the bakery for non cronut customers- it never gets nearly as long as the cronut line. This is something to consider for future visits)
More waiting. As I hold our position C wakes up from her nap…
…just as the man himself walks by and notices her adorableness and our “C is for CRONUT” sign! As we explain that she is a foodie in training, he kindly agrees to take a photo. (Just look at the excitement on C’s face! ;)) Here we are with brilliant pastry chef, and inventor of the cronut, Dominique Ansel.
Once we near the counter, there’s a lot of “juice” to look at. Here I spied a tray of cronuts, next to pre prepped magic soufflé containers.
This lovely lady is pre filling the cronut boxes for our group. Each person is allowed 2 cronuts. Count ’em= TWO.
FINALLY! Our time has come! It is now 11:29 a.m. and C is placing her order!
If you are standing on this line, the cronut order is a given and your box of two precious cronuts is ready and waiting for you. By now we thought it would be a good idea to order a late breakfast or early lunch. Unfortunately they were sold out of egg sandwiches, and all other croissants. This bakery does not just sell cronuts! Their other food is delicious too and the other items sell out as well! Lunch service does not start until noon. Nicole makes a quick menu planning recovery (the move of a seasoned foodie) adding a parfait and pastries to her order, a coffee, and what I will come to learn is the last box of macarons!
Nicole and C grabbed us a table at the front…
O.M.G., Aunt Dan! YUM!
The cronut IS delicious… flaky, light, crispy, a bit greasy in an expected donut kind of way. I bet they are even more glorious when still a bit warm. There’s just the right amount of icing on the top so it is not too sweet. Most of all, we loved the fig and marscapone combo! VICTORY!
Is any one food item worth a four hour wait? Probably not… but when counting the buzz, and the fun, and the sweet company, and the people you meet, and our love of NY, it really was a fun and fabulous morning.
Here we are with our Dominique Ansel Bakery bags to go. They told us they do not stack boxes, because ‘it compromises the pastry.’ As a foodie and cookier I really appreciated that detail knowing exactly what they mean!
Foodie mission accomplished! I can’t wait to see what’s next. Thanks to Mr. Ansel for the sweet fun and excitement! “Keep calm and cronut on!” Xo Dani
The tulip boxes they pack their pastries in are quite lovely!
Here’s the cronut I brought home for KF. He unceremoniously ate it when he got back from the gym while standing at our kitchen counter and said ‘it was good’. (mad emoticon face) ;)