Atmosphere: Bread Etc is a a bakery and café on the corner of Xiang Yang Lu and Jian Guo Lu. Over the last few years this part of Jian Guo feels like it has become the land of bakeries and cafes.
You literally can not go more than two or three storefronts in this area before hitting another coffeeshop or bakery. That makes it all the more impressive that Bread Etc is still drawing the crowds.
The atmosphere is fairly typical with a large bakery counter where you can see the goods and then a large seating area. There are a few large communal tables where people in large headphones type on laptops.
Food: There are a couple of surprises here. First, the prices are not that expensive for the quality. I think most of the foreign bakeries have either jacked up their prices so much that it makes you cry or reduced their portions so much that you can’t even see what you’re buying.
Second, there are some unique twists on the food that actually make it better. The salmon eggs benedict is served on one of their house made croissants which makes a rich dish even richer. And the burger is one of the best out there even though it veers from American burger orthodoxy. The homemade bun is buttery and light, the meat actually tastes like beef, and the shaved cucumbers give a nice crunch while offering a good balance to the meat and bread. There is a small French flag on the burger, but alas there are no French fries. Instead they have roasted potatoes that must be made in some magical meat dripping as they are super savory and delicious. The pizza, cakes and breads to take home were also done very well.
Service: The service overall is good, but this place gets packed on weekends during brunch so things sometimes seem a bit out of hand. There was a sizable line out front and the host could have done a better job of splitting the people who want to sit inside and outside as there was some jostling about.
I went for a solo brunch over the Chinese New Year holiday, so I’m sure it was much quieter than it usually would be at brunch time. Consistently ranked as one of the best brunch spots, Bread Etc. was always one of those places I passed on foot but never went inside. It turned out to be a perfect place to sit and get some reading done. The atmosphere was lively still, and the crowd was a nice mix of people. The people near me consisted of a first date, a business brunch, and another guy reading a book. The servers came over right away with a menu, and the service was great. I always had a full glass of water and staff was always aware of who needed help.
I thought brunch was reasonable given the portion size and the fact that I wasn’t rushed out of the restaurant for flying solo. The Salmon Benedict (RMB 82) had a really nice helping of fish on it, the Flat White (RMB 35) used good coffee, and the Orange Juice (RMB 35) was really fresh.
In total, I spent RMB 152 on an extravagant brunch for one, but it’d be very easy to pop in to grab some bread downstairs and a coffee for a far lower price tag.
Summary: Bread Etc. is a great place to stop in for a coffee and a pastry or grab a table for a full meal. The space accommodates everything from lunch dates to business meetings. The food is delicious, fresh, and exactly what you’d expect—in a good way.
Recommended by a friend, and I thank her until now, Bread etc. is a great place to dine for brunch, afternoon tea, or even dinner. There’re so many choice on the menu and all the dishes are very versatile. You’ll never run out of idea here.
The restaurant itself is spacious with two floors and outdoor seats, and even with indoor seats you can enjoy the sunshine thanks to the big windows around. It’s spacious but like all restaurants in Shanghai, it’s always packed with people. The staff are always helpful and friendly, and the dishes are all well- presented and tasty.
It’s not my first time at Bread etc. and definitely won’t be the last! So far I have tried French Pastry Basket, Beef warm sandwich, and Avocado cold sandwich. Almost everything in the French Pastry Basket taste good, except that one time the croissant was a bit dry and did not taste like it was freshly made. The set comes with two drinks and can definitely filled you up. The carrot juice is freshly made with no added sugar, and the coffee taste pretty well made as well. I love both of the sandwich here and am very satisfy with the baguette, and if you like poached egg, ask for it! All the dishes taste very healthy and delicious, and be aware that they all serve with a good portion.
At the entrance you’ll see the beautiful pastries and desserts, and be sure to grab one. I’ve tried lots of them and personally love the coffee éclair and berry tart. Everything is exquisite and taste just as good!
It’s always a pleasure to go to Brea etc., especially at the sunny weekend where I can sit outside and enjoy the sun, good food, and good talk with friends.
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