The honors are flowing in from national food authority Bon Appétit, and as we await the release of their annual Best New Restaurants issue, today in addition to garnering a design award for SF's own Leo's Oyster Bar, critic Andrew Knowlton has crowned a small French patisserie in the Inner Richmond, Arsicault, the "Bakery of the Year" in the US.
Opened a year ago April at Clement and Arguello, as Richmond SF reported at the time, Arsicault is headed up by baker and first-time business owner Armando Lacayo, whose great-grandparents owned a bakery in the early 1900's in Corbeil-Essonnes, France called Arsicault Boulangerie.
The place specializes in croissants and those sweeter, amazing things that b. patisserie's Belinda Leong turned us all on to in the last few years in SF, kouign amman (pronounced queen ah-mon), which were invented in Brittany once upon a time during a flour shortage and a butter surplus.
As Bon App writes of Arsicault's croissants, "[They're] simultaneously so preposterously flaky it leaves you covered in crumbs, so impossibly tender and buttery on the inside that it tastes like brioche, and so deeply golden that the underside is nearly caramelized."
Given what an appearance in the magazine did for lines at State Bird Provisions a couple years back, you may want to run out to the Inner Richmond to taste one of these things while you still have a chance. The magazine is set to drop later this month.