Flagship of gastronomy, Tokyo is still now the city known as holding the record of the largest number of starred restaurants, even before Paris and New York! A real treat for all food lovers like me! Especially, Japanese cuisine is very fine and full of diversity (no sushi at every meal! Far from it!).
However, despite of this diversity (and like every respectable French), I still sometimes succumb to the soft and delicate call of a good baguette with a piece of cheese… But it’s not always easy at first to find good bakeries in Tokyo. You can easily find the best like the worst ... But no worries! After some years of practice, I've now identified some good places that can easily compete with some our best French bakeries!
Photo : Norio NAKAYAMA on FlickrSince 2012 and its first boutique opened in Shibuya, it's one of my favorite places in Tokyo so far! They've opened 6 shops in Japan since then (including 3 in Tokyo). Quality baguettes, delicious croissants and a Kouign Amann!! Oh My God!! Surely one of the best I've ever had so far (but shhh…, don't tell my uncle from Brittany!). They also have a wide selection of original breads (Don't miss their cuttlefish ink bread) and it’s reasonably priced for a bakery in Japan (and this level of quality). Highly recommended!
All shops locations here
Photo : Banzai Hiroaki on FlickrWe no longer present this internationally known brand with boutiques in Paris, New York, Seoul or even Mexico! The insurance of top quality bread (Special mention for their Monge baguette for those like me who love to bite the tip). They owned many shops in many famous districts such as Ginza, Marunouchi, Tokyo Midtown, Nihonbashi, Shinjuku, Kagurazaka, Ikebukuro, Jiyugaoka and more!
All shops locations here
Photo : Yuichi Sakuraba on FlickrIt used to be my favorite place in Shibuya when I was looking for a classic French-Style Sandwich! Many varieties provided (Pate de campagne, rillette, jambon...) and the baguette is excellent (crispy from the outside and soft like a Mochi inside!). Maybe a little bit overpriced compared to what you can find in France, but definitely worth it if you want to have a little taste of France. I recommend also their Kouign Amann and their Fougasse! Today they have 2 shops in Tokyo (the one I know in Shibuya and another one in Marunouchi) and both locations have a little brasserie as well where you can have a glass of wine!
Esprit de Bigot (Jiyugaoka)
For those who live in this cute little neighborhood near Shibuya, a small bakery where I used to go when I was living nearby. Another Osusume place like we say in Japanese!
Other addresses to try
Maybe one the oldest French addresses in Tokyo (the first shop opened in 1968). Since many years, A. Lecomte delivers a bread of quality and fine pastries and owns many shops in the city such as bakeries and pastry shops (of course!), but also tea rooms and even brasseries and restaurants.
Le Pain de Joel Robuchon (Hikarie Shibuya)
Joel Robuchon is a starred French chef that now runs many restaurants worldwide, including several address and shops in Tokyo. Recently, a bakery has opened in the shopping center Hikarie located in Shibuya, with original bread recipes specially created by the master! Definitely worth a try!
Never tried so far but this is a very well-known bakery in France. They already had a bakery school in Tokyo and they just opened a bakery shop in Tokyo very recently. But because it's new and popular, you'll have to queue a bit to get your fresh croissant!
Dominique Ansel (Jingumae)
Same thing here if you want to try the well famous cronuts created by Dominique Ansel himself in his bakery shop in New-York! A new shop has just opened in Jingumae recently and same as for the Bakery in New-York, you’ll have to line-up very early to try it!