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The Early Word on Maison Kayser's First US Location

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Paris-based bakery and café chain Maison Kayser made its first foray into the American market last week, bringing the famed baguettes and pastries from Eric Kayser to the Upper East Side. Although many early visitors praise the quality of the baked goods, some have pointed out kinks that are typical of a brand-new operation. Here's what people are saying about Maison Kayser:

The Good News: One Yelper loves the baked goods: "Delicious croissants that are just the right size. You must try the financiers. I bought the chocolate one but this morning they had a basket of minis at the coffee bar and I got to try all the flavors. Each one is delicious but my favorite is the pistachio. Staff is friendly and efficient but it can get crowded fast on the bakery side of the place. Also, I got to practice my French which is always great." [Yelp]

The Bad News: Another Yelper has a terrible experience: "Went for brunch and arrived at noon. Was told, after speaking to a hostess--who went to look for seats for us--to seat ourselves. Found seats for 4. Waiter took our order though he couldn't answer any questions about the food. We waited. And waited. And then realized everyone else was waiting, too." She concludes: "EAT HERE AT YOUR PERIL. For their sake, I hope they get their act together. Completely unacceptable in every possible way." [Yelp]

The Masterpiece News: Tejal Rao of the Village Voice samples the raspberry tart: "The raspberry tart has a crisp pastry shell full of a soft, almond-kissed cake with a tender chew. It's topped with a blob of pastry cream and as many fresh raspberries as it can hold. A tiny masterpiece." [VV]

The Rich News: A Foursquare tipster makes a recommendation: "Try the Croque-Monsieur. I promise it's like none you've ever had in NYC. They serve it Tartine style- so not overwhelmingly heavy but incredibly rich " [Foursquare]

The Nice News: One of two commenters on Grub Street has this to say: "I've had several things at MK, all of which were quite good, with the financiers downright exceptional. The display cases are oddly, on occasion, a bit bare and some of the workers are a bit clueless, but it's quite the nice new addition to the neighborhood. Odd that a Payard Bakery is opening across the street, though." The other Grub commenter also called it a "welcome addition." [GS]

The Unprepared News: Here's a Yelper who has some qualms with the service: "Our server forgot our appetizer. We ended up canceling it. That wasn't a problem. Waiter was nice. But the overall vibe we got was that they were still figuring it all out. There was a lot of hustling with the wait staff. Seems as though they were a bit unprepared for the popularity. I'm sure they will get this figured out, I hope they do, because I intend to visit often." [Yelp]

The Impossible Fresh News: From Serious Eats' review of the apricot tart: "Impossibly fresh, the thin shell is crisp, buttery, and well-browned. It's lined with a layer of textbook perfect frangipane and topped with quartered apricots (so juicy!) and toasted, chopped pistachios (there is a pistachio-free option as well, but why skip them?)" [SE]

The Superb News:: Says a Serious Eats commenter: "The place has been open four days and I've been there twice....First for breakfast then lunch...all, food, service, ambiance...superb !!! Browse in the bakery and graze on the incredible pastry and bread samples.. I left with a bag of tiny pastries." [SE]

The French Friend News: An Eater commenter on the baguettes: "Some of Eric's french friends brought us three of his baguettes last night at a dinner party and everyone agreed that they were pretty damn perfect. I'm rarely uptown, so I'm looking forward to his Soho and Bryant Park locations. Recommended!" [Eater Comments]

· All Coverage of Maison Kayser [~ENY~]

Maison Kayser

1294 Third Ave., New York, NY