We had almost given up.
In search of all that was French, flakey, and horn-y, the quest for the best croissant in Bangkok seemed like a near impossible task. Sure, PAUL delivers a ‘just fine’ one, and in combination with a coffee at Roots, we see why a cup of joe and the crescent moon pastry work so well together; but nowhere thus far really caused us to shout from the rooftops, “Eureka! The best croissant in Bangkok has been found!”
And so, we got exploring. In casual conversation with Iron Chef Thailand pastry champion Jason Licker, he broke it to us crisply, like a slow tear across a warm pain au chocolat. “There are a few reasons why croissants are difficult to master in Thailand or even in Asia,” he says. “It’s a lot of work to make them well, the weather plays a huge role, and most importantly, you need to be wholly dedicated to the craft. A perfect croissant is baked just before it is served, which is tough here because the humidity can get to it and destroy it even within the hour.”
But where Licker’s words may have gotten the weaker amongst us in the wicker basket of pastries, it only raised more eyebrows amongst our team, and the quest for the best croissant began. Armed with his wisdom, and a mental image (and scent, goodness, the scent) of a perfect croissant, we became all the more motivated to hunt down those who could fight the odds and deliver that beautiful balance of butter and flake. The perfect ratio of crispy to fluffy. The finest most glorious degustation of grease on wax paper.
From secret sois to loud-and-proud Bangkok bakeries, here’s where to find the best croissant in Bangkok, according to our very own Lifestyle Asia Bangkok team.
Hero image credit: Valeria Boltneva/Pexels; Featured image credit: Instagram
Fluffy-to-crispy ratio score: 7.5/10 horns
I’ll admit it. I am aforementioned PAUL and Roots girl. And I kind of gave up on finding a croissant that takes me back to Paris in the 90s when I was a young girl and accessorised with croissant flakes all over my sweaters. As Jason outlined, it’s a challenge in Asia, in large part given the climate conditions, but luckily I don’t have to venture too far to make it to my current fave of a croissant club for the minute.
Kenn’s is tucked away on an unsuspecting Sathorn soi, conveniently located just opposite my apartment. The tiny cafe has a charming London-like feel to it, with a quote I can’t recall but recall to love written on the chalkboard above the offerings. They sell only croissants and coffee, which speaks volumes for both their croissants and coffee, and are almost always sold out by noon. I don’t know who Kenn of Kenn’s is, but he’s killing it.
Special mentions: My favourite crescent moon in Thailand I discovered at Keemala in Phuket (I ate three in a row), which is incredible because it’s by the sea where humidity lingers galore!
Kenn’s, 163/2 Soi Narathiwas Rajanagarindra, 5 South Sathorn Rd., Bangkok, +66 149 5451.
Insider club points: 7.5/10 word-of-mouths
Ever stylish and always on top of the trend, our style writer Karn Chatikavanij picks the city’s beloved Amantee as her go-to for the best croissant in Bangkok. An infamous household name in the hood, the bakery cum gallery cum cafe is renowned about town for their breads and pastries, and almost unsurprisingly, their croissant does not disappoint. Helmed by a French family, the organic, artisanal treats here are in great company between elegant oriental exhibitions and the kind of setting where you’d find interesting people reading interesting articles from the latest pages of Monocle. Amantee is one of Bangkok’s greats when it comes to bakeries, and boasts the savoir-faire to bring a little dusting of cultural heritage to the table, too.
A few fun facts to sprinkle over your pastry journey like icing over an almond croissant? ‘Amantee’ translates to ‘peaceful space’, which is exactly how Karn feels her head is at after a bite or seven of the baked goods here.
Special Mentions: Folies — it’s a little old, but it’s still really gold.
Amantee, 2240/12-13 Chan Kao Rd., Chong Nonsi, Bangkok, +66 81 814 0920.
Captain Squid Saladaeng
Ability to start an addiction: 7/10 matcha drizzles
Our latest addition to the team, Alisha Pawa kind of took us aback when she mentioned the name of this place. Granted, she preluded it with her undying affinity for PAUL, but once ‘Captain Squid Saladaeng’ crossed her lips we couldn’t help but wonder: was she misremembering the Spongebob Squarepants character?
Alas, our wondering minds were calmed when we discovered that it really is a real place, and they really do make good croissants. And the variety of croissants they make! Boasting a huge and wholly awe-inspiring selection, Captain Squid feels like a really good secret to keep and caress, making freshly baked French butter croissants on the daily, and also delivering straight to our office. Just saying.
Special Mentions: Still, PAUL, of course.
Captain Squid Croissant, 1010/17 Rama 4 Rd., Silom, Bang Rak, Bangkok, +66 920 656 656.
Holey Artisan Bakery
Buttery satisfaction points: 8/10 grease marks
Our dedicated dining writer Kankanit Wichiantanon is a fully-fledged foodie through and through — and not just that — she’s an avid baker, too. And so when we shyly asked her for her input to the best croissant in Bangkok, we were certain the answer was going to woo us into whimsy.
We should have guessed it: Holey Artisan Bakery. The other half to the Bangkok heart of bakery that is made whole by Amantee above, Holey’s bread has long made waves across the insider industry as some of the finest bread in town. The croissants here too get just as much love as their sourdough counterparts, made over two days using French butter. Anything made over two days using French butter was highly likely made with plenty of love, and deserves plenty of love, too. Kankanit gets it.
Special Mentions: Paris Mikki for sheer ‘grammability (can you even call yourself a foodie in 2019 if you aren’t on Instagram?), and Cafe Tartine, her favourite hangout spot to eat, read, and eat some more.
Holey Artisan Bakery, 245/12 Sukhumvit Soi 31, Bangkok, +66 2 101 1427.
This article first appeared on Lifestyle Asia Bangkok on 10 July 2019.