Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Philadelphia >
Apr 17, 2013 07:46 AM

Good/great bakeries in Philly?


I'm a first time visitor to Philly and I'm driving down from NYC. I'm not sure what bakeries are considered very good to great in your city?

What I consider good/great bakeries in NYC would be Dominique Ansel, Bread's Bakery, Epicerie Boulud, Balthazar, Bouchon Bakery (not their macarons), Bien Cuit and SCRATCHBread (the owner for the latter has some crazy versions of classic bread that I adore).

Please assist and thanks in advance!


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Plenty are very good but I think these are great:
    Termini's (old school Italian) - Visit the original South Philly location if you can. Their outposts are fine too, the original is just more fun.
    Artisan Boulanger Patissier (french) - best baguettes and croissants -- though Parc restaurant makes great baguettes too
    Four Worlds Bakery (eclectic)
    Market Day Canele - no retail location but sold at La Colombe coffeehouses in Center City and at some farmer's markets)
    Nook Bakery & Coffeehouse - muffins and pastries are excellent. Wish the coffee was as good.

    8 Replies
    1. re: barryg

      I'll second Termini's and Artisan Boulanger and add Belle Cakery.

      1. re: barryg

        Thanks for the suggestions!

        Speaking of coffee, do you know of any good third wave coffeeshops? I know La Colombe (they have a few outposts in NYC) but is there any others?

        Thanks again!


        1. re: chocokitty

          Agree with Termini's, Artisan Boulanger, & Belle Cakery. All awesome, very close to each other. And, then you can get the coffee at Ultimo or Chhya (or both). All within walking distance.

          1. re: SP1

            Termini's has excellent cannoli and you will want to get bread from Metropolitan. Both have locations in Reading Terminal Market. Some of the pies are good at Magpie but some are not...

            As far as coffee (from a non-drinker's perspective) La Colombe is good as is Elixir and people seem to get very excited about Ultimo.

          2. re: chocokitty

            La Colombe is not third wave. Ultimo was just called best in the country by a survey by DailyPlate. I can't vouch for that but I do think it's the best in the city. They were also stocking bread, bagels and pastries from Four Worlds at one time, not sure if they still do. Chhaya is pretty good for brunch if that fits with your schedule.

            1. re: barryg

              Didn't LeBan (local top food critic) rate Chhya and Ultimo as a tie for best in the city? I'd have one at Chhya, then Ultimo and pick up some special beers to take off the caffiene edge! (Ultimo has a great selection of beers).

              1. re: SP1

                No Chhaya was #4.

                The list is a couple years old at this point.

          3. re: barryg

            Here's another vote for Market Day Canele. It's just the one pastry, but what a delight! The best canele I have had anywhere. They are usually at the Saturday Rittenhouse Market and the Sunday Headhouse Square Market, and I believe (though am not positive) that both markets would be open over the 4th of July weekend.

          4. Thanks everyone! I'll look into them (and the suggested coffee spots)!

            I'll be in Philly during the July 4th weekend. Hopefully, they're all open then. :)

            3 Replies
            1. re: chocokitty

              Considering you'll be over the July 4th weekend, besides checking to see if places will be open, may want to avoid the Center City area. Unless you want to take in the festivities. The places in South Philly will be very relaxed, lots of people leave town that weekend.

              1. re: SP1

                I was thinking there might be a few that might close during that weekend. Thanks for the tips!

                1. re: chocokitty

                  I doubt the Center City ones will be closed -- if anything the places in South Philly are more likely to close as they don't get nearly as much tourist traffic. Call ahead.

            2. I like Tarte for their lemon bars and coconut macaroons. Sadly, I haven't found any good french macaroons in Philly yet.

              I haven't tried it, but I've also heard good things about Elixr near Rittenhouse Square.

              1 Reply
              1. re: sueyee

                Thanks, suyee for the suggestions! I've heard of Elixir for a while and I'm penciling that down.

              2. While there are many good patisserie items in Philadelphia, to compare them to Balthazar, Tomcat, Amy's, Sullivan St, and others for bread is regretfully not going to happen. IMHO next to Paris, New York is the best bread town in the world and l miss it when trying to buy bread in Philadelphia. Great bagels yes, but that is it. Good baguette in Manayunk at Main St Market. Metropolitan and Le Bus are for me just meh.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                  Do you really believe Philly has more good bagel bakeries than bread? That's insane.

                  1. re: barryg

                    Sorry, not more, nor better but NY Bagel at City Line and Haverford Ave does compare to Ess-A-Bagel,Tal and others in Manhattan, while l feel no breads are in the same league as those in NY.

                2. Nobody has really mentioned Metropolitan, but I know many Europeans and New Yorkers who consider it among the best bread they've had and make a point of going there when the come to visit me.