On their company website, Paris Baguette says its company, which traces its origins all the way back to 1945 with a small bakery in South Korea named Sangmidang, embodies the spirit of “not leaving a single piece of bread unchecked.”

If that’s the case, I would like to volunteer as tribute to inspect every piece of pastry at the new location in the Spring Branch Management District.

I think there will be many other applicants lining up for the job, though.

The South Korean franchise known as Paris Baguette officially began in 1988 and grew to be the #1 bakery in Korean in 2004, when it began branching out to the United States, Vietnam and Singapore.

As of November 2023, around the time the location in the Spring Branch District finally opened after a long wait by anxious fans, the chain had more than 3,600 retail stores in South Korea, 99 stores in the United States and six stores in Canada.

Between 2021 and 2023, according to news sources, Paris Baguette doubled its footprint.

Darren Tipton, CEO of Paris Baguette, told Nations Restaurant News that about 80 percent of what they sell is bread, pastries and cake. “And we’re going to stay true to who we are,” he said.

While competitors have branched out to become eateries specializing in sandwiches and not focused on baked goods, Paris Baguette has stayed true to its origins, though you can pick up a few sandwiches.

As we were hungry at lunchtime, we welcomed something more filling and savory. A friendly clerk steered us toward popular sandwiches like the Harvest Chicken Salad Sandwich and the Chipotle Chicken Panino, which were fresh and tasty.

The bread, of course, was the best part.

New store designs like the one in the Spring Branch District take inspiration from French bakeries and bistros, with open kitchen concepts. In fact, you can watch bakers work through windows outside the Houston store, located in the same shopping strip as H-Mart.

“We took the pandemic to reset the American model,” Tipton said. “For us, it was really about reestablishing the neighborhood bakery, which is a heart of the community. “

At the Spring Branch District bakery, a Houston-based mural provides a local flavor. And local employees were more than happy to give us their recommendations for menu items.

We went for a bestseller, a slice of Strawberry Soft Cream Cake, and then jumped in to try something different at least to me — a Croissant Crisp, which is basically a flattened croissant, with raspberry filling.

Other popular desserts at the Spring Branch District shop include the croissant donut (with or without Nutella), ham and cheese croissant and smoked sausage bread.

Want to bring something to the office or home to share? Sticky Milk Buns or Raisin Bread will be a big hit, or just pick up a tray and tongs and pick an assortment of pastries to be boxed up to take away.

A friend I brought in the morning to the bakery went back the same day with her family to try more items, including the almond croissant, which is now her husband’s favorite.

I’ll be coming back to try the Sugar Mochi Donut. But first, I plan to download the Paris Baguette app, which comes with a coupon for a free pastry.

What was the plan? Oh, yes — no bread left unchecked.

Someone has to do it.

Paris Baguette
1304 Blalock Road

— Dorothy Puch Lillig