Review #4, Monterey/Carmel trip
Parker-Lusseau Bakery in Monterey, CA – update, take-out
Adobe location: 539 Hartnell St., Monterey, CA
Cuisine: French bakery/patisserie
Review Date: December 18, 2021
I called Parker-Lusseau a week before our visit, and placed an order for pick-up. As we were only visiting for an overnight trip, we picked up the order when we arrived in Monterey on Saturday. PL has temporarily closed the Munras Avenue location (where all the products are baked); only the small Hartnell St. cafe is open for retail and pick-up. Unfortunately, Hartnell St. is closed on Sundays. The third location in Bishop Ranch (suburban Monterey), has closed permanently.
Our friends had their own order to request, so I did both orders on the same call, but emphasized to please keep the two orders separated. Parker-Lusseau handled everything perfectly and all four of us were very happy.
I did feel that there was slightly less butter used in the croissants, but it is the same high-quality cultured butter with its unmistakable flavor. It was hard to tell as the croissants did get a bit stale from being held for almost two days before we were able to have a couple for breakfast. The shortbread-crusted fruit tarts were delightful, with that luscious true pastry cream. The berries were strawberries and blueberries, both ripe and sweet. I ordered a few of the seasonal fruit tarts, which turned out to be sliced quince.
Our friends got the chocolate croissants, while we opted for the almond croissants. Both were excellent, as always.
The special quiche flavor of the month was leek-mushroom. All of us love leeks, so we ordered one large (i.e., whole) quiche for ourselves and split a second with our friends. They also ordered the roasted tomato and goat cheese quiche, which for some reason had been omitted in the listing on the website; but the lady taking our order assured us was still a regular menu item.
The whole quiches are not usually available except by special order. Quiche slices are a strong seller at PL as a take-out lunch item, however.
We were happy to see that Parker-Lusseau has managed to survive these perilous times, even though they have had to pull back a bit. We prefer the Munras Ave. store and hope it reopens again. It’s been a long, tough haul these past couple of years, but hopefully Yann Lusseau and Anne Parker can build their business back up again before deciding to retire – they’ve been in business for 26 years already!
The Monterey area has a lot of “French” bakeries…but after trying them all, we can assure you that only Parker-Lusseau is The Real Thing.