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La Boulange Pastries Roll Into Starbucks

The bag is pink, the goodies are hot. But are they better than before?

This month our editor Nina Martin profiled Pascal Rigo of La Boulange after it sold to Starbucks for a sweet $100 million. Starting this week two Starbucks locations (Levi's Plaza and 201 Spear Street) are the first to offer La Boulange goods. Now each pastry is warmed in seconds and served in a pink La Boulange bag. The muffins are called gateaus. So French! But are they really better than the old Starbucks pastries? We asked a few customers to find out.

Name: Kimberly Sanchez and Danelle Mabubay
Occupation: Inventory Management
Lives in: Nob Hill and San Mateo
La Boulange pick: French hot dog (hot dog wrapped inside pastry dough)
The verdict: Kimberly: “I love these. I get them at the La Boulange in the Fillmore. I love the new location in the Metreon.” Danelle: “She’s the trend-setter. She made me get one too.”

Name: Phil Martin
Occupation: Designer
Lives in: Hayes Valley
La Boulange pick: Blueberry muffin
The verdict: “These aren't as good as the ones at the La Boulange near my apartment. Those seem larger to me. I liked the old blueberry muffin. It had the crumbles on top. I also hoped they would have the hazelnut croissant here.”

Name: Rigel Cable
Occupation: Advertising
Lives in: Castro
La Boulange pick: Bacon gouda sandwich
The verdict: “Is this different? I didn’t even notice. I thought the bag was pink for breast cancer research.”

Name: Alex Churbuck
Occupation: Receptionist
Lives in: Pacific Heights
La Boulange pick: Plain croissant
The verdict: “I know these from the source. At my usual La Boulange the croissants are comparable, but not as fresh.”