The tag line for Lotto in the United States used to be “A Dollar and a Dream.” Though this croissant was a bit more, say $2, it was THE dream. No losing here. Absolutely the best croissants in the world are in France. And this particular croissant is the best I have ever had, period. We had lots of brilliant croissants in Paris, from hotel buffets, to fast food lunch places, to small bakeries on nondescript side streets, but this one had a wonderful balance of flakiness, softness, flavor, size, looks, etc. Even if it hadn’t come from Pierre Herme, I think I would have had a HUGE smile on my face after munching on this. I am not sure if it is the wonderful french butter, the flour or the water. Possibly the technique, the humidity, the salty sweat of the bakers…
I would NEVER aspire to making croissants at home. NEVER. Why bother if you can buy brilliant ones for the price of a few minutes on one’s cellphone yapping away on some inconsequential matter? The flakiness is caused by dozens of layers of dough with butter in between. It is perfect on its own, but paired with some more butter and a good jam this is one of life’s finest pleasures, in my opinion. French baguettes are also brilliant, but for me, give me a good croissant any day and it will probably MAKE my day.
Even at very good french patisseries in the U.S., where the croissants are pretty darned good, they just aren’t like their Parisian cousins. There are lots of things you can buy for PHP100, but a superb croissant is pretty high on my list of preferred goodies. :)