And I now want to visit one baker who is departing from the traditional in that regard. I ride back to the Right Bank to reach the Canal Saint-Martin neighborhood, where Du Pain et des Idées (bread and ideas) is established. This is the boulangerie run by Christophe Vasseur, the boulangerie bread lovers in the know often named their favorite.
Like many late bloomers—Vasseur had a first career in the fashion industry—this baker has a very individual approach to his craft. His range is narrow, and each item he sells is the result of extensive creative thinking. Indeed his croissant is unlike anyone else’s, eschewing the traditional shape for a beautiful hybrid, more knot than crescent.
Vasseur uses heritage wheat flours and butter from a small co-op. These choices don’t make his job any easier—non-standardized ingredients have a mind of their own—but they produce a one-of-a-kind croissant with remarkably attractive golden tips and hints of orange blossom.