The place smells awful—like no odour I've ever known, and nothing like a bakery—but still, it’s crowded with tourists. I really wonder how people can stand the odour. Doesn’t it give you a haut-le-coeur? There’s no way a French bakery would stink like that. In France, the good smell of the bread and of the patisseries must reach you while you’re walking in the street. Intrigued, you have a look through the vitrine and you dribble in front of all those good stuff. Then you check your pockets to see how much money you can spend. You enter the place and a warm and heady flavour comes to tickle your nose. And you spend 10 minutes in the bakery store, hesitating between the chouquettes, the macarons, the eclairs and the viennoiseries.

Not that many choices here, in Le Panier. Actually, the place seems to be a touristic spot. But why should tourists go to a French bakery while they’re visiting Seattle? Weird.

I bought a baguette and a croissant in order to taste them. I was happy to discover that they didn’t smell like the bakery store. They even smell like French croissants and baguettes. The bread is crusty enough and looks good. Same for the croissant. And in my mouth, they’re not the best I’ve ever eaten but they are good.


I was surprised by the price, $2.25 for a baguette. The bread has not been imported, so why is it so expensive to mix some baking powder with flour, salt, and water? In France, the average price for a baguette is 0,80 euro (about $1).

I would give this place a C+.

Good points:
• The location
• The taste
• The ambient

Bad points:
• The price
• The smell
• Lack of choice