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Breadwinners: 10 of Saigon's Best Loaves

Being Filipino, I was raised eating fried rice and over easy eggs for breakfast. Pan de sal, the bread of choice for Filipinos, was something that was only sold at Goldilocks which was a good 45 minutes away from where I lived in northern California. Like Guinness, it just doesn't travel well.

Since living in Vietnam and having Germans as close friends, I have been schooled on the fine art of dough. With the help of friends and a modest number of local bakeries, I've refined my understanding of the heart and soul of a good loaf. Here are my top 10 breadwinners:


10. Banana Bread at Sweet & Sour Bakery: Yes, I do eat sweet banana bread for breakfast. I strategically have my coffee black to allocate sugar rations in my protein. 

09. Pain au Chocolat at Une Journee a Paris: A satisfying size completed with a perfected crisped top and a Parisian's measure of chocolate. 

08. Sourdough (loaf) at Voelker: I firmly believe that all things fluffy is good for you. Bread is no exception. 

07. Sesame Roll at Crumbs: Worth noting, far from exciting.

06. Six Grain at Schneider's Traditional German Bakery: Discovering good multi-grain bread has made the concept of rice redundant. Going home with one of these not only makes me feel frugal but also elitist.

05. Baguette at Big C: Shocking? Insulting? Yup, it's the closest thing I could find to the baguettes I bought during my week long stint in Paris last summer.

04. Walnut Raisin at Mekong Merchant: A sweet and savory mold of uber nutritional value of walnuts and mixed raisins. Plus, it tastes even better when it sells for half price after 5.

03. Norlander at Voelker: My first taste of German dark rye bread that features a plethora of seeds including roasted sunflowers. It's in the top three because my first purchase came straight out of the oven and the fact that it looks like an inverted exclamation point.

02. Ciabatta at Movenpick: Hands down, best I've had in a very long time and I hail from the Gourmet Ghetto in Berkeley.

01. Norlander at Movenpick: I once viewed bread as a sad third place to rice and mash potatoes. Movenpick artisans have single handedly transcend what I once thought of bread as a mere vessel existing to only pack as much butter or jam I could load on before consumption. The bakery's norlander stands on its own needing nothing to strengthen its taste nor value.


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What's your favoriate bread in Saigon? 

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