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Looking for best places for breakfast pastries and strong coffee

I'm coming to NY for a visit in September and I'm looking for places with great breakfast pastries and strong coffee that is preferably NOT dark roast.

I like croissants and reading the croissant threads makes me think that Bergamote, Petrossian and Ceci-Cela would all be good choices. But I also like sticky buns and cinnamon rolls and other breakfast pastries (coffee cake? filled almond croissants? etc.), so I wanted to ask about breakfast pastries in general. It could either be a sit down restaurant or a bakery with (or without) a counter to sit at. It is hard to describe what I like in a pastry since it depends on the type, but in general buttery and flaky are good attributes of most pastries - though I wouldn't call a sticky bun or a cinnamon roll flaky, so maybe that's too much of a generalization.

We'll be staying downtown but I have no problem going anywhere in Manhattan for a great breakfast pastry.

I've been to City Bakery on past trips and it was ok. I'll go back there if there isn't something better to try.

Oh, and any places that have strong coffee? I don't expect this in the same place, but that's ok, I can stop at one place for the coffee and another for the pastry.

Thanks!
Tony

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Ceci-Cela
55 Spring St, New York, NY 10012

City Bakery
3 W 18th St, New York, NY 10011

Petrossian
182 W 58th St, New York, NY 10019

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  1. Commerce makes the most incredible cinnamon rolls on the planet, though they're only available on weekends (brunch).
    9th Street Espresso makes my all-time-favorite coffee. People swear by Stumptown Coffee.
    Also for pastries/baked-goods: Bubby's (Tribeca), Donut Pub, Balthazar Bakery, Tipsy Parson, ABC Kitchen

    www.thelunchbelle.com

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    Donut Pub
    203 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011

    Stumptown
    18 W 29th Street, New York, NY 10001

    Tipsy Parson
    156 Ninth Avenue, New York, NY 10011

    ABC Kitchen
    35 E 18th St, New York, NY 10003

    1. For a sticky bun, I'd go to Balthazar (I also love the fruit foccacia there and the chocolate loaf bread). For a cinnamon bun, I'd go to 'wichcraft. For a muffin, Clinton St Baking Co. For olive oil cake, La Colombe or Abraco.

      I don't think there's really a knock out all in one bakery or sit down restaurant where every breakfast pastry is good, although Locanda Verde comes close. I've heard good things about Maialino as well.

      http://newyork.seriouseats.com/tags/b...

      For coffee, I think you'll need to go to another place and then go get a breakfast pastry somewhere. My favorite drip coffee is probably Jack's Stir Brewed or 9th Street Espresso. Do you want drip coffee, iced coffee, or espresso drinks? If you're interested in all of them, you have a ton of options. If I were doing a coffee tour of NYC, I would get a cortado from Abraco, an iced coffee from Caffeteria in Soho, a hot coffee from 9th Street Espresso or Jack's, a mocha from Stumptown, and an affogato from the Van Leeuwen Ice Cream and Espresso Truck.

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      Abraco
      86 E 7th St, New York, NY 10003

      La Colombe
      270 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10012

      Locanda Verde
      377 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10013

      Stumptown
      18 W 29th Street, New York, NY 10001

      Maialino
      2 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10010

      2 Replies
      1. re: kathryn

        Wow, thanks for the suggestions.

        I should have said: I am looking for hot brewed coffee, i.e., drip or press pot, not espresso or espresso-based beverages.

        1. re: atjsfo

          In that case, Jack's Stir Brewed or 9th Street Espresso. Abraco is good but on the darker/stronger side (it tastes great but sometimes gives me the jitters).

          Stumptown is good, too, and you might get a kick out of their unusual pastries:
          http://newyork.seriouseats.com/2010/0...

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          Abraco
          86 E 7th St, New York, NY 10003

          Stumptown
          18 W 29th Street, New York, NY 10001

      2. highly suggest abraco, especially considering it's nice out. drip coffee is great and strong and their cortado's are fantastic too. for pastries, i love their olive oil cake and their cinnamon rolls.

        other suggestion: joe's art of coffee. fantastic coffee with a great selection of pastries from area bakeries. in the morning, i go to the one in grand central and get a coffee and from their pastry counter either a cranberry banana muffin from corner cafe, a croissant from ceci cela or a donut from doughnut plan. i'm assuming the joe's on 13th or in the west village has the same set up.

        1 Reply
        1. re: jon

          Love Abraco, but it's tiny and they have weird hours. 8-4pm, closed Mondays I think.

          I was at the West Village Joe's a few weeks ago on a weekday morning and they didn't have any donuts from Donut Plant that day, and only the almond croissants from Ceci-Cela I think. The iced coffee I had was good, though!

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          Ceci-Cela
          55 Spring St, New York, NY 10012

          Abraco
          86 E 7th St, New York, NY 10003

        2. I know this is going to catch some flack, mostly because you could get better coffee elsewhere, but I really enjoy morning pastry and coffee at Financier downtown. It's nice if you're looking for something a little less formal. but would like to site and read the paper.

          1 Reply
          1. re: firni

            No flack from this hound; indeed there are several new locations now, and they are all great suggestions (www.financierpastries.com). The one WAY downtown is on Stone Street with outdoor seating; in nice weather, the location alone is worth the trip. Even if you don't do morning coffee, if you are in the Wall Street area, it is certainly a pleasant place to take a break.

          2. I recommend Via Quadronno.

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            Via Quadronno
            25 E 73rd St, New York, NY 10021

              1. re: daffyduck

                Maiailino is a great suggestion. Terrific breakfast pastries, and wonderful coffee.

                1. re: daffyduck

                  Are you talking about the toffee glazed brioche bun or the brioche with jam?

                  The toffee glazed bun was odd I thought -- it felt like a bizarre child of brioche and a sticky bun. I wanted it to be one or the other, not waffling in between. I think I prefer Balthazar or Breslin's brioche and 'wichcraft's brioche sticky bun (which is more sticky bun than Maialino's was). Eh.

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                  The Breslin
                  20 W 29th St, New York, NY 10001

                  Maialino
                  2 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10010

                  1. re: kathryn

                    I am talking about the one without jam. i have not tried Balthazar, Breslin's, or wichcraft's. sorry you didn't like it kathyrn! =[.

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                    The Breslin
                    20 W 29th St, New York, NY 10001

                    1. re: daffyduck

                      Well... I can't say I hated it (I did finish the thing), it's just that it wasn't my favorite.

                2. If you're on the run, I'd strongly recommend the sticky bun at Bouchon in the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle. It's not a place to linger however.

                  1. I really love Viennese coffee, so Cafe Sabarsky would be my pick. I think they have croissants or Kipfel in their bread basket, otherwise they certainly have brioche. There are also plenty of sweets to satisfy you, particularly Gugelhupf.

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                    Cafe Sabarsky
                    1048 5th Ave, New York, NY 10028

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: JungMann

                      Strong second to JungMann's recommendation; if you are going to any museums at all, you'll be in the nabe, and it is a terrific experience (www.cafesabarsky.com) whether for break or lunch or end of the day. Plus, it is located right in the Neue Gallerie.

                    2. I agree that the best combos of coffee and pastries have to be done separately. If in the West Village, grab coffee at Joe the Art of Coffee followed by croissants at Claude Patisserie. In my opinion, the best croissants in town. Early a.m. when they're fresh out of the oven is highly recommended.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: billyeats

                        Went over there at 8am this week, and yes! They are lovely when warm.

                      2. I hate to say this, but you're getting suggestions from places that offer mainly dark roasted coffees.

                        Maiailino uses Four Barrel which will be a slightly lighter roast, similar to Stumptown though. Coffee is pricey there. Another option for Four Barrel is Il Laboratorio, but they don't serve pastries.

                        Ritual Coffee, known for their light roasts in SF, and another roaster from San Diego can be had at RBC, which has pastries. Village Tart has a similar selection of coffee options, including Ritual, and a nice pastry selection, but expect the combo to set you back close to $10 there all together. Honorable mention would go to the 4th Ave. location of Think Coffee, near 14th. Avoid their standard offering and look for the premium coffee options from roasters like Ritual, and some notable New England places. They carry pastries from local bakeries. The baristas there are hit or miss.

                        Gimme Coffee is probably you best option for a light roast, but you'll have to luck out on what they're brewing or pay a premium for a drip. Second would be Joe's, or maybe Grumpy. Ask which is their lighter roast. http://www.gimmecoffee.com/Coffee-C13... Gimme actually lists them. They have croissants, I believe from Ceci Celi. Joe's has an excellent selection of nice treats from assorted small bakers, mostly cookies, and cupcakes. Grumpy carries a very limited selection including the excellent scones from Scratchbread.

                        The best baked good with your coffee will come from Abraco, Cafe Pedlar, La Colombe (olive oil cake, or croissant), and Stumptown (same as Pedlar) but all offer darker roasts. Pedlar uses Stumptown but brews lighter than the others, I think.

                        Unfortunately, New Yorkers associate strong coffee with dark coffee, so aside from Gimme, you're going to have to pay extra from the special offerings menus to get what you want. The default will be medium dark to dark.

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                        Abraco
                        86 E 7th St, New York, NY 10003

                        Think Coffee
                        1 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10012

                        La Colombe
                        270 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10012

                        Stumptown
                        18 W 29th Street, New York, NY 10001

                        Village Tart
                        86 Kenmare St, New York, NY 10012

                        1. Flaky pastries and strong light roast coffee? Just my thing, too! Keep the recommendations coming, folks:)

                          Sugartoof covered the coffee situation more thoroughly than I could-- I guess Gimme Coffee would also be my top choice. For pastries, I'd definitely recommend checking out La Bergamote. Croissants and brioche, esp almond, are the best I've had in the city (though I admit to relatively limited experience with the newer bakeries), and I'd especially recommend the chausson aux pommes. But you should probably take out, as the coffee is dark and not anything out of the ordinary.

                          -----
                          La Bergamote
                          169 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: manilov

                            Grumpy is fairly close to La Bergamote, and while pricey, it's one of the few roasters originating in NY (most just have NY outlets, or ship in their beans).

                            Chelsea Market is also nearby, where you can find 9th Street Espresso using Stumptown and Ronnybrook using Gimme beans.