We've known the people behind Bien Cuit for many years now. Zach Golper and Kate Wheatcroft's bakery on Smith Street has been a regular stop on our Brownstone Brooklyn tour since 2011 and their traditional slow-fermented bread is always a highlight. Zach is the acclaimed James Beard Award winning baker and his wife Kate handles the business side of things and has expanded their baking operations to include wholesale around the city. That means that many of the city's finest restaurants use Bien Cuit's breads on their tables.
Just a few months ago, Zach hired executive chef Jeff Sytsma to oversee an expansion to Grand Central Market. Jeff has a huge resume as pastry chef at some major restaurants around New York, like The Elm and Oceana.
Now that they have taken over the Zaro's space in Grand Central Market, there will be a new wave of commuters (who probably never get to the Brooklyn location) who will be exposed to some of the greatest croissants, sourdoughs, and pastries this side of the Rhône.
After publishing a book, building up a customer base, and being nominated for many awards, Bien Cuit decided to open a second take-out location. The new counter is in the middle of Grand Central Terminal's market. This narrow market is populated with local businesses that sell both prepared foods and raw ingredients (fish, produce, spices) to cook at home. Needless to say, it is a very popular spot with local workers on their way to catch the train home from work.
Most of the baking still happens at the larger flagship in Carroll Gardens and the commercial kitchen space in Sunset Park, but expect some exclusive items at the new spot. There's a savory feta and kale danish, a decadent mocha croissant bread pudding, and a honey whole wheat eclair. These are of course in addition to the expertly baked baguettes, campagne, and pain de mie.
Once you taste the miche bread or the seasonal eclairs, you won't have to ask us why. Bien Cuit's dark slow-fermented breads are heavenly. And we are very excited they are now available at their own location in Manhattan. We begin our Midtown Sights & Bites tour steps away from the market and so it's a perfect place to pre-game the tour with a taste of the best local baked goods in NYC.
Inside Grand Central Market
89 East 42nd Street
New York, New York 10017