Janine / Flickr

From Charleston to L.A., these bakeries put a creative, seasonal twist on cupcakes, pies, and cookies.

Bakery Lorraine, San Antonio, TX

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Bouchon Bakery and culinary school alums Anne Ng and Jeremy Mandrell own this bakery in the Pearl Brewery, which they moved to last year when they outgrew the 1920's homestead that originally housed their shop. The pair takes a refined approach to American and French pastries, namely, kouign-amann (bread dough layered with butter and sugar), Pop-Tarts™, and frangipane tarts with seasonal fruit. Another customer favorite: macarons in sophisticated flavors like dark chocolate lavender, salted caramel, and earl grey.

Must-Try Item: You'll want to order two Fig Chevre Tarts, filled with fig jam and vanilla-flavored goat cheese, topped with filo dough and fig. bakerylorraine.com

America's Best Bakeries

Bakery Lorraine, San Antonio, TX

Bouchon Bakery and culinary school alums Anne Ng and Jeremy Mandrell own this bakery in the Pearl Brewery, which they moved to last year when they outgrew the 1920's homestead that originally housed their shop. The pair takes a refined approach to American and French pastries, namely, kouign-amann (bread dough layered with butter and sugar), Pop-Tarts™, and frangipane tarts with seasonal fruit. Another customer favorite: macarons in sophisticated flavors like dark chocolate lavender, salted caramel, and earl grey.

Must-Try Item: You'll want to order two Fig Chevre Tarts, filled with fig jam and vanilla-flavored goat cheese, topped with filo dough and fig. bakerylorraine.com

Janine / Flickr

America's Best Bakeries

Theresa Velazquez’s D.C. bakery business is thriving, and just three months ago, she (with the help of her husband, son, and daughter) opened a new location in Downtown. “We really make ourselves part of the neighborhood,” says the co-owner of Baked & Wired and A Baked Joint, where hazelnut ganache cupcakes are playfully displayed in upside-down coffee beakers.

Many of America’s best bakeries are family-run establishments that take a similar approach and pride in their community. They’re appealing, one-of-a-kind spots where travelers can break to enjoy made-from-scratch pastries that often highlight local ingredients.  

At Standard Baking Co. in Portland, ME, Alison Pray introduced Maine miche, an organic whole-wheat bread made with 100 percent single varietal wheat grown by a local farmer. “You couldn’t have imagined this 18 years ago when we started,” she says.

Great bakeries are not afraid to evolve or experiment, reinventing classic desserts as well as offering lesser-known European treats. So on your next trip, head to one of these bakeries for a sweet start to the day—whether an apricot puff pastry tart with almond cream or the gibassier, a French citrus-flavored bread.   

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