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Choux Factory Vs. Beard Papa’s: A Cream Puff Dilemma

A couple of years ago when Beard Papa’s opened in the Upper West side , I had the fortune of being in NYC at the time.  I still remember standing in line to figure out what the fuss was all about.  Thank goodness I wasn’t impatient, because as it were, they ended up being well worth the wait.  Needless to say, when a location opened in San Francisco about 2 years after that – I was a very happy girl because I didn’t have to travel all the way to the east coast to have my fix (those puffs are only good for 24 hours!).  Cream Puffs were on my radar.    Well, fast forward to present day, now a resident instead of a visitor to NYC, and finding out that there was  another Japanese Cream Puff place here in the city.  What!?   Exactly.  No arm twisting necessary, all someone had to say was cream and puff in the same breath and I was making my way to Choux Factory in Midtown to try it out.

Like Beard Papa’s, Choux Factory is a Japanese pastry shop that specializes in cream puffs filled with custard cream and made to order on the spot.  They too have multiple locations around the city.  The slight variation here is that the Choux Factory doubles as a speciality coffee house.  Yes everyone, you can have coffee, cream puffs, and bagels all in one place.  Not that it mattered to me at all, because let’s face it, I’m all about the dessert.  And here, you’ve got vanilla, chocolate, blueberry, and other seasonal flavors to try in cream puff form.  Multiple flavors, just like Beard Papa’s.  The question is, are they better or as good as Beard Papa’s?  Well, it depends on if you are a chocolate or a vanilla kind of person.  Let’s compare…

Chocolate Cream Puff: Choux Factory

Chocolate Cream Puff: Choux Factory

Value: Choux Factory puffs are slightly more expensive at $2.00 each.  It makes sense though because they are larger.  They get the + point in this category.

Pastry Shell: As far as the shell, Choux Factrory is more traditonalist, you’re not going to find that fluffy and light consistency (and slight crispiness!)  that Beard Papa’s is known for.  Beard Papa’s is still better, but the shell at Choux makes sense because of their custard filling.  It’s a toss up in this category.

Custard: The Choux Factory custard is thicker and creamier than Beard Papa’s, and I gotta say in any case I like it.  Overall though is it better?  Again, it’s a toss up, because it depends on the flavor.

The Cream Puff: Chocolate Vs. Vanilla: The Chocolate is best at Choux Factory.   This is my flavor recommend.  It’s much better than the Beard Papa’s version.  You can taste the chocolate in the filling, to the point where you could just eat the filling without the shell.  It’s that good without being too sweet.   The Vanilla here doesn’t quite compare though  Although it is tasty, it doesn’t have the same punch.  The custard is too pudding like for my taste and consistency.   I’ve been spoiled with the lightness of the Beard Papa’s Vanilla Bean version.  That Bean part at Beard Papa’s – pushes it over the edge.

The verdict?  Chocolate fans hit Choux Factory and those Vanilla purists head over to Beard Papa’s.  In any case, comparisons aside, you’ll get a good cream puff.

-Jules

Choux Factory:    8 out of 10 stars.

Choux Factory
865 1st Ave
(between 48th St & 49th St)
New York, NY 10017 / (212) 223-0730

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Comments

  1. This post made me wish I lived in New York! I absolutely LOVE cream puffs….

    | Reply Posted 8 years, 9 months ago
  2. * Mary says:

    Yay! I was with you that day that Beard Papa’s opened in NYC! It was ~heaven~! Now that there’s two locations here in SF, it’s kinda played out. I like to say that *we* discovered it, though!

    | Reply Posted 8 years, 8 months ago


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