100 Favorite Dishes: Croque Madame from Pierre Michel Organic French Bakery Cafe
No. 47: Croque Madame from Pierre Michel Organic French Bakery Cafe
Let's get one thing straight: If you snooze, you lose, and I mean that quite literally. Forget what the hours actually say on the website or the door: Pierre Michel Organic French Bakery Cafe, shoehorned into a tight space in a sprawling Highlands Ranch strip mall, often shuts an hour -- sometimes two -- before the posted closing times, thanks to the barrage of bread heads who slither off with a contented smirk, smug in the fact that they've snatched up the French bakery's magnificent fruit pastries, butter croissants, quiches and French baguettes long, long before you've hit the snooze button.
The bakery is the center of life in Highlands Ranch, a permanent community for families, bread geeks, sugar fiends and egg heads who worship just about everything that escapes from the kitchen, all of which are the creations of owners Eric and Isabelle and their three children. There's nothing here that doesn't emit dreamy sighs and choruses of ooh la la, but the croque madame, thick-sliced ham and melty Swiss stacked between butter-slicked slices of toasted brioche, and throned with two eggs weeping rivers of bright yellow yolk, is the kind of French decadence that seriously alters your mind. Just make sure you arrive early to partake in the morning glory, otherwise you risk being apologetically turned away at the door.
Hungry for more? All the dishes in our countdown are linked below:
No. 94: Seafood soup from Farro
No. 73: Gumbo from Bistro One
No. 69: Mais pizza from Pizzeria Locale
No. 66: Sea scallop and rock shrimp noodle bowl from Bones
In late 2009, we embarked on a culinary journey that took us through our favorite dishes in the Mile High City -- one hundred, to be exact. Now we're back with round two, counting down (in no particular order) a hundred more of our favorite Denver dishes in a list that, by our imperfect calculations, should be wrapped up...sometime this year. If there's a dish you think we need to try, tell us about it in the comments section below, or shoot us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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