Republique, Los Angeles, CA
My best friend, Jody, and I took this trip to Los Angeles to see one of my favorite bands in concert – and of course we had to have fun on my Dessert Tour! With this being my second time in LA, I had to check this restaurant and bakery out, and I am so happy I did because this is hands down my favorite bakery and restaurant experience ever! As a professional looking to own my own bakery one day, places like Republique truly inspire me and build a fiery passion within me to make my goals become a reality. I get all giddy and excited when I experience an amazing and successful bakery like Republique.
Republique is owned and operated by husband and wife duo, Chef Walter and Chef Margarita Manzke. Their bios are quite amazing and I advise to read them. You can find their bios on their website which is hyperlinked on the bottom of this page, but I will give you a brief overview. Both Chef Walter and Chef Margarita have resumes to be reckoned with. Chef Margarita is from the Philippines and started her culinary journey in London at Le Cordon Bleu in pursuit of pastry. Alternatively, Chef Walter is from San Diego and started his culinary journey in San Diego and LA in pursuit of savory. After both of them explored restaurants throughout the globe they finally met in LA at a restaurant called Patina. It did not take long for this chef duo to soon open a place of their own, Wildflour Bakery, in the capital city of the Philippines, Manila. After great reviews they opened a second location in Manila. Following their two successful bakeries they opened Petty Cash taqueria in LA and finally their most recent, Republique.
The Republique ambiance was clean and industrial. It progressed from a bakery into a restaurant. We walked in and the most beautiful pastry display was in front, stretching all the way down the side to a cashier. Here I ordered a ton of pastries and one breakfast entree to share. Once we placed our order we walked into the restaurant and thats when the ambiance hit me. First, there was an open bar on the left side; then, there was the dining area which was a bit more rustic. In the dining area there was an open bakery full of ovens and a table where customers could watch the bakers work the fresh dough into fresh breads. Eventually we found our table, which felt like the Manke’s took a courtyard and turned it into a dining room with an open kitchen. And we’re not finished yet! Further back there was a fine dining room with marvelous ceiling-high mirrors that was used for private events. Lastly, there were stairs that seemed to lead to another dining room. Yeah, this place is amazing and my dream come true.
Now going back to the open bakery with the ovens…. when I first ordered my pastries I saw a baker who was pregnant. Later, I saw her again working with dough on a wooden table. Beside her was a small boy sitting at the wooden table playing with a robotic toy (probably Transformers) and of course playing with some dough. It was in this moment where I couldn’t help but see a glimpse into my future one day and I swear I had the biggest smile on my face 🙂
The breakfast entree we shared was called “Shakshouka”. It had stewed tomatoes and bell peppers with kale, cilantro, and a beautiful fried egg on top. It was accompanied by a fresh baguette that was amazing! When I tore the bread apart I could literally hear “crunch crunch crunch”. I didn’t even have a bite yet but I knew this baguette was going to be the best. The “crunch” did not disappoint, and the baguette was so perfect that I dipped it into the tomato stew making it all even better. The ingredients and stew were so fresh and bright. This breakfast entree as a whole was hands down incredible!
Bostock is a French pastry delicacy made with day old brioche and almond
|Chocolate Bomboloni & Bostock|
frangipane on top. Another great pastry. It was slightly crunchy and crispy on the outside, but so light and spongy in the middle. The bostock had toasted slivered almonds on top with blackberries folded inside. The toasted almonds gave the pastry an additional crunch of texture and the blackberries were a nice pop of tanginess! Somewhere hidden in this amazing pastry was a hint of citrus which wrapped up all of the flavors and hit this dessert out of the ballpark!
Chocolate Bomboloni: 10/10
Bomboloni is a popular Italian filled doughnut. This doughnut was extraordinary! It was rich and dense from the chocolate filling but the “dough”nut itself was airy and divine. Both the chocolate spread on top of the bombolini and the chocolate filling were unbelievable! The milk chocolate filling in the middle was smooth, creamy, sweet, and rich; but, not overwhelming at all.
|Chocolate filling from Bomboloni|
|Pop Tart & Kouign Amann|
Maple Bourbon Bacon Date Pop Tart: 7/10
Very flaky to the point where the pop tart almost fell apart or where little bits of the tart fell onto the plate. The inside was different for me in terms of flavor profile. I expected this to be amazing with all of the tasty components in the pop tart, but it did not settle well for either one of us. The date stood out amongst everything else in the “jam” inside the pop tart, but besides that I honestly cannot describe the foreign flavors we tasted.
Raspberry Pistachio Kouign Amann: 10/10
Omg so amazing!!! Crunchy toasted pistachios alongside juicy, tangy raspberries make the best combination. The pistachios have a nutty, earthy flavor and the raspberries give a nice burst of freshness. The dough was flaky like a croissant and sticky on the outside, possibly from some lightly sprayed sugar glaze. Altogether the pistachios, raspberries and dough were so sweet and delicious.
Hazelnut Paris Brest: 11/10
Paris Brest is similar to profiteroles in that it is made with pate a choux, but the paris brest has praline cream filling. This pastry was divine! It was also messy – but, the good kind of messy that is totally worth it. OMG is the praline cream delicious. Smooth, creamy, and buttery with the great nutty flavor that was light and not too overwhelming. The praline cream filling literally melted in my mouth. The pate a choux was soft and light. Like the chocolate bombolini, the paris brest had the same dark chocolate glaze on top with chopped toasted hazelnuts. The chocolate was sweet and accompanied by a beautiful crunch from the toasted hazelnuts. When I got everything in one bite I melted away into a bliss as did the pastry in my mouth. Once the praline cream filling dissolved into my taste buds, the hazelnuts followed with a delightfully crunchy contrast of texture which created a lovely and sweet finish.
|Hazelnut Paris Brest|