I am a morning person. This isn’t so I can get a leg up on the day, or so that I can beat rush hour traffic, or even so I can get into work early and show my boss how productive I am. I am a morning person because I like to waste my mornings. I want to spend them thumbing through that morning’s Chronicle, Journal, or Times. More importantly, I want to spend my morning slowly pulling at a croissant, and sipping on a few too many cups of coffee.

Croissant Brioche French Bakery and Cafe
2435 Rice Blvd.
713-526-9188 

Thus, my mornings are spent, when I am so fortunate to find myself in the chaos that is never finding a parking spot in Rice Village, at Croissant Brioche French Bakery and Cafe. Their mouthful of a name—which begins with a short listing of what they serve and then suddenly turns into a description of what kind of eatery they are—is a pretty good indication of what they do best: great croissants and occasionally brioche as well as bread, a ton of desserts, sandwiches, and coffee. 

I go for the croissants and a coffee or espresso. Last time, it was an almond croissant. Loaded with a seemingly never-ending pile of almonds and filled with almond paste, the croissant was a pleasant mix of textures and flavors. I also grabbed a nut danish, which is shaped like a honey bun or cinnamon roll but made with delicious, flaky danish dough (in lieu of yeast roll dough) with a sweet, chunky pecan filling.

The almond croissant here is one of the best croissants I’ve had in Houston—and yes, every Houston publication has already talked about this very croissant, but it really is that good. And while the nut danish was great, I definitely ended up enjoying the almond croissant more.

Croissant Brioche French Bakery and Cafe is always packed, probably thanks to all those almond croissant mentions in the media. I haven’t been there yet when there wasn’t a line. Breakfast, lunchtime, in-between breakfast and lunch—you'll always find yourself waiting. And while finding a place to sit and eat can sometimes be tricky too, when you do, this is a great place to sit for a spell, savor a few pastries, sip on some coffee, and people watch. And of course, by "people watch," I mean watch people stand in line waiting on an almond croissant of their very own.