Best Croissants - 2005
A La Tomate
At A La Tomate -- owner Phil Collier's loving homage to the cuisine of Provence and Toulon -- everything is good, but the croissants are the best. Made fresh every day, they are impossibly buttery, with crackly shells and insides like clouds. Each one is a cholesterol hand grenade just waiting to go off -- doubly dangerous, since they're so light, it's easy to eat two or three. We eat them plain. We eat them with the horns dipped in chocolate. We eat them drizzled with honey or, for the ultimate culinary extreme-sport thrill, split open and smeared with even more butter. And every time we sit down in front of another, it's as though we're spitting in the Grim Reaper's eye. Sure, we know that nothing that tastes this good could possibly be good for you, and there are probably teams of freelance cardiologists cruising up and down 17th Avenue just waiting for regulars to drop dead from pleasure ten steps from the door. But at least when we go out, it will be with smiles on our faces and crumbs on our lapels -- evidence of our final meal at A La Tomate.