- Maison Kayser
1294 Third Ave., nr. 74th St.; 212-744-3100
If you have any doubt that New York is in the midst of a bread renaissance, elbow your way into the snaking line at Eric Kayser’s Upper East Side boulangerie. It’s there, behind the frenetic cashiers, that you’ll find Kayser’s gift to our carb-starved masses: his baguette Monge ($2.75), named for the Parisian street where the master baker and global juggernaut opened the first of roughly 80 shops some seventeen years ago. It’s a beautifully simple thing, slightly swollen at the middle and slender at the tips, the crackly outer crust yielding to a moist, almost damp crumb, with enviably variable hole structure and a creamy hue that come from natural leavening, long fermentation, and the incorporation of a bit of roasted corn flour imported from France. Freshly baked, it tastes buttery without butter, rich and complex with a subtle tang.