Thursday, June 16, 2011

Vive La Baguette!: La Baguette French Bakery and Cafe, Old Colorado City

All this talk of hiking and adventuring is making me hungry, so it's time for a another little foodie gem from our time on the road. The gem in question today is actually a charming little French bakery, appropriately called La Baguette, in the Old Colorado City part of Colorado Springs.

The bakery is housed in handsome brick building, sandwiched between a bar and a gift shop. Inside, exposed rafters give the place a slightly industrial feel, but the interior is bright and airy. There are cozy white-washed booths to fold yourself into, with small tables and cane chairs completing the Euro-cafe aesthetic. A hand-painted cluster of grapes adorns the kitchen door and the walls are hung with local artwork and vintage-looking posters extolling the virtues of the French trifecta - bread, cheese and wine.

While I haven't sampled their namesake, I've dined here - and fallen in love here - on two separate occasions. The first time was a few years ago, with a tall, dark, and frothy hazelnut cappuccino - possibly the best cup of coffee I have ever had. Ever. Why else would I tip $5 for a $2 cup of joe?

I've warmed myself with the memory of that gorgeous coffee many times since and, based on this wonderful chance encounter long ago, I dragged Matt halfway across the city to make sure we came back on our way through C-Springs. Crazy? Yes, but with good reason. The food and atmosphere were just as lovely as I remembered - and this time I fell in love with their justifiably popular French Onion Soup.

I'm a big fan of French Onion Soup, which is strange because I don't usually like things that are overly cheesy or oily. Still, I'm a sucked for the clear, molasses-colored broth, the smooth, translucent onions and the slightly soggy raft of bread with it's silky skin of toasted cheese. I order it whenever I get the chance - even at places I shouldn't (a-hem, Applebees!). I've even resorted to canned French Onion, but only in times of crisis. So I was in luck because, in the world of French Onion Soup, La Baguette's is le roi (okay, so I don't speak French, but for this soup, I'd try!).

Just looking at these photos again makes me wish for a few sweet onions and some Gruyere. Can you see the bubbles of cheese, hiding perfectly caramelized onions and a sweet, clear broth beneath? C'est un miracle!

While I was rhapsodizing about my soup, Matt was devouring an equally delicious-looking turkey-and-swiss croissant whose dimensions closely approximated those of a wooly mammoth. One thing is sure - you won't go hungry at La Baguette. In fact, I'd had my eye on a few items in the pastry case - I've heard wonderful things about their eclairs and pastry cream - but, by the time I'd finished my soup, even my dessert stomach was full! I actually offered half of my crusty, white roll to Matt - which was astonishing because the bread was quite fresh and very good. Luckily, he still had a bit of stomach room left after finishing his mammoth-sized croissant. At least it went to a good cause.

Sadly, I also didn't have any room for my favorite hazelnut coffee...or their delicate Opera cakes, or their buttery, sugar-dusted almond croissants, or their rich, crustless quiche, or their escargot (yes, they really do serve it!), or the number of other delicious things on their extensive menu - all of which just means that someday we'll have to come back. Again, and again, and again.

La Baguette French Bakery and Cafe on Urbanspoon


  1. This soup looks so delicious! My challenge is finding vegetarian versions out at restaurants. I mean, I could make it at home but then I would have to get all that yummy, stuck-on cheese off the bowl!

  2. Yeah, sadly I'm pretty sure the broth was beef-based. The messy cheese is one of my issues with making it at home, too. I'm also way too health-conscious to load that much cheese onto my bowl - but I'll happily eat it if someone else does the loading! ;)

  3. Hi Rachel,
    Your first post just appeared on Urbanspoon! Check it out:
    I encourage you to claim your blog, which allows you to add a picture and change some settings. The blog photo shows up next to your posts wherever they appear on Urbanspoon. Here's how to claim:
    - Make sure you're logged into Urbanspoon
    - Go to your blog page on our site:

    - Click "Claim your blog" in the left sidebar
    After you submit it, we may contact you to verify your claim. Check your spam email folder if your claim hasn't gone through in a day or two. You'll also find some interesting badges and widgets on your Urbanspoon blog page - look in the right sidebar.
    Let me know if you have any questions.