Friday, March 18, 2011

La Monarca Bakery: Pastries, Lunch, and Cakes to Save Monarch Butterflies

This East LA institution has finally moved west with its opening of La Monarca Bakery Santa Monica. This place fits surprisingly well with the Santa Monica with its healthier pastries (low butter, low sugar, nothing is fried, vegetarian options) and the price is lower than most bakeries in the area.

The executive pastry chef Alain Bour is actually a France native and trained, and he combines classic techniques with Mexican flavors, like their croissant filled with guava paste or dulce de leche. Browsing their pastry case may be overwhelming (it's self-serve), so here are some suggestions.

Make sure you try the tacos de guayaba,a sugar-dusted puff pastry filled with guava and cream cheese ($1.50).
It's a different style but it gives Porto's guava cheese roll a run for its money. The pastry shell isn't the flaky type and I do think I prefer the guava paste here. One is never enough.

Their pan de elote is a sweeter version of corn bread and also worth a try.

Also try the Cafe Oaxaca ($3.75), made with espresso, mexican hot chocolate, and steamed milk.
They have free wi-fi and you can count on me coming here to work over some cafe oaxaca.

For the lunch crowd, there are different types cazuelas (Mexican claypot stew) served as sandwiches. Choose between Poblano chicken mole, Salsa Verde braised beef, or even a vegetarian chorizo, then choose your bread size.

There are also quiche, including a vegetarian chorizo quiche and a huevos rancheros.

Dulce de leche croissant and three savory croissants.
Dulce de Leche CroissantSavory Croissants at La Monarca
And let's not forget the cakes. My favorite is always the tres leches and their version is moist without being overly sweet.
Speaking of cakes, on Saturday March 19, La Monarca launches their Cakes for A Cause campaign.
From Saturday to June 30, 20% of revenue from all cakes will be donated to ECOLIFE, which protects the endangered habitat of the monarch butterflies.
And until the end of March, Twitter followers who post “I support @LaMonarcaBakery and #CakesforaCause!” will be entered to win a 7-inch cake of their choice. (There will also be a second twitter contest in conjunction with Earth Day from April 22-25. Same rules apply).
Mil Hojas at La Monarca

Also, the Santa Monica bakery is hosting its official grand opening party Saturday (that's tomorrow) from 2-4 pm, featuring free pan dulce and Mexican beverages, live mariachi, a ribbon cutting and more.

With their prices, their goodies will also make a good office potluck contribution. So if you haven't given La Monarca a try, what are you waiting for?

And bring me a box of tacos de guayaba, please.

La Monarca Bakery - Santa Monica
1300 Wilshire Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90403
(310) 451-1114


Exile Kiss

Hi burumun,

Nice post! :) I've driven by the new La Monarca a few times, but haven't stopped in yet.

Is their Taco de Guayaba's Guava Paste overly sweet and jammy? I've found many Guayaba desserts around town to have an overly processed / sweet jam/jelly flavor instead of a pure Guava essence coming through. Thanks~


Thanks Exile Kiss!

I didn't think their guayaba was too sweet or jammy; I found it less sweet than Porto's.

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