I have been searching for Grandaisy bakery for what feels like years. For some reason, every single time I tried to find it, I wound up completely lost, wandering into the wrong neighborhood. Google maps would lead me to the wrong place and, in a fit of frustration, I would give up and choose to get a baguette from Amy’s or Pain d’Avignon and, thus, be horribly disappointed.
Then I found it. After working over a brilliant cortado at Kaffe 1668, I was wandering through Tribeca a bit, avoiding revision. I saw a couple papered windows and then the bakery. When I wasn’t even looking for it, I found it. I walked in immediately, not even caring that I had no real reason for buying bread.
Grandaisy is bright, light and airy inside. It’s a gorgeous bakery with a bit of cafe seating. The breads are mostly Italian inspired with stirati, pane con uva e noci and a variety of pizza al taglio (già tagliata) on offer. The offerings are mostly savory, but there are a few sweet treats as well.
I glanced at their menu board, which was photos of the bread with names underneath (a neat, if inefficient, way to present strange breads with foreign names). When I saw that they had a panino con noci ed uve (their words, not mine), I knew I had to get it. My two favorite breads in Italy are pane con uvetta and sflitani integrale con noci, this little bread seemed like a combination of the two.
I also got a croissant, of course.
It didn’t look particularly promising and the fact that I hadn’t already sampled it raised my eyebrows. I was intrigued, however, and hoped that it would surprise me. It did, but barely.
The real surprise was that it tasted a lot like the ho-hum croissants I used to get as a special Friday treat when I was in school that I would always have my dad heat up in the oven. There was a little butter flavor, but it was too dry without being actively dry. The butter was present more so because it didn’t taste like bread and wasn’t actually flaking as opposed to any discernable flavor. There was virtually no difference between the texture of the inside and the outside. There were no crunchy bits on top nor on the bottom. Not even the “claw” bit was crunchy. I was mega disappointed.
In fact, it reminded me a bit of a larger version of the croissant that I ate at Buvette. Except, the ones at Buvette were cute and a bit crunchier.
Ultimately, there is a reason that you haven’t heard of Grandaisy’s croissant: it isn’t very good. Perhaps the bread is better. The bit of the panino that I ate was good … but I would prefer a sfilatine integrale con noci from Spadaro. At least I know I can find a quasi-replacement once my time in Italy comes to a close.
Share a time when you were disappointed with something you ate! Are there any bakeries that you don’t think live up to their hype?