Getting booted from their home of 21 years was the best thing that could have happened to the venerable French bakery Artisan Boulanger Patissier.
Their long-awaited new location at 1218 Mifflin St. finally opens today after literally a year delay, and they’ve amped up their offerings to expand well past their signature breads, pastries and desserts.
The menu will now include full-sized cakes, more pastries – including a nontrademarked name for their version of a cronut – sandwiches, bahn mi, grab ‘n’ go sushi, soups in the winter, Counter Culture coffee and espresso drinks, Thai tea, Vietnamese coffee, and more.
Those new options are on top of their famous breads, croissants and other pastries that developed such a cult following that we’ve never gotten more inquiries about the opening of anything.
Chef John Loc, who was trained at Osaka in Chestnut Hill and now is the chef at the new La Fusion Asian restaurant at 15th and Oregon (more on that one next week), will make the sushi every morning here. It will be grab and go, so expect old standards like salmon with avocado, spicy tuna and California rolls. But he also plans to add specials each week to zazz up the selection.
Artisan also is increasing their commercial baking business by way of more than doubling their prep space.
So, what was the hold-up, you ask? Well, Andre Chin, who owns the joint with his wife Amanda Eap (sorry, Amanda, accidentally called you Andrea for a little while there), said they switched contractors twice after running into all sorts of permitting problems. In April they finally found a guy they love, James Quang, who was able to maneuver the complicated permitting process like an Olympic slalom skiier.
Six city inspections later, and they’re ready for their grand opening today. They had planned to open tomorrow, but today turned out to be more lucky, according to the Chinese calendar.
From the looks of the new place – and the voracious appetite for the tiniest bit of news about its progress – they won’t need luck.