The same day Vivian and I went to Line Friends Cafe located at Sinsa, we had breakfast at Mr Holmes Bakehouse prior to that. Again, this was researched by Vivian and she was so excited to take a shot with the “I GOT BAKED in SEOUL” iconic neon sign that everyone is posting in their instagram. The reason why I am interested to write about Mr Holmes Bakehouse is because I went to the original store at San Francisco twice just two weeks back.
Mr Holmes Bakehouse
34, Apgujeong-ro 10-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
If you just pass by the building above, you would never know that there is a bakery at the ground floor of this building. For takeouts, you can simply buy the pastries at the ground floor of the building. However, if you would like to dine at the cafe, you have to go up to the second floor. Both Vivian and I only realised the “I LEFT MY CRUFFIN in SANFRANCISCO” pink neon sign when we left the cafe so we also took a couple of self-timer shots here.
Once you are at the second floor, you will be greeted by the display of their oh-so-famous pastries such as the cruffins, donuts, croissants and such. The floor is filled with ceramic tiles of varying dimensions, while the side walls are done up nicely with uniformed white rectangular tiles. It gives a very clean look and their twist logo, inspired by the graphics of the fictional Mendi’s Bakery from West Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel, finishes the look with an “oomph”. Aron Tzimas, who is the designer behind Mr Holmes, is so innovative with the branding of Mr Holmes that many Singaporeans are heading to Mr. Holmes to take pictures with the neon lighting the minute they step foot on the grounds of Seoul.
For those who do not know, Mr Holmes Bakehouse outlet originated from San Francisco and their second outlet opened in Seoul. They opened two more stores at Los Angeles after their launch in Seoul. Unlike the quarterly flavour changes in San Francisco, the flavours in Seoul change on a daily basis. If you reside in Seoul, you can review their flavour updates before heading down to the cafe. So when we went during spring this year, it was the sakura season and thus, the store came out with flavours such as sweet potato for the cruffin. If you do not already know, cruffin is a hybrid between a croissant and a muffin so the croissant comes in the shape of a muffin filled with flavoured cream, dusted with sugar and topped with some delicious toppings such as dried banana and nuts.
The former baker behind Mr Holmes, Ry Stephen created such a sensation in the pastry world with his creative cruffins that everyone is craving for it and snapping shots with it and of it along with the “I GOT BAKED in SEOUL” neon lights. Donuts are another signature pastries of Mr Holmes and are usually vanilla flavoured or filled with random flavoured cream decided by the chef. In this case, it’s toffee flavoured. People who know me well understand that I am not a fan of donuts. I really love the different flavoured cream oozing out of both the cruffin and donut but of course I prefer the texture of the cruffins more because of it’s flakiness. We were quite disappointed with the chocolate croissant because it was too sweet and the taste pales in comparison to the cruffin and donut. However, the croissants served at the original outlet at San Francisco tastes a lot better but we shall save that post for another day. As for the beverages, I always turn to Matcha Latte when I feel that I need a cup of “coffee”. However, the drink was too sweet for me. Although Vivian and I shared all the pastries, we were too full that we could not finish the chocolate croissant.
The first receipt depicts what Vivian and I had during my first visit to Mr Holmes in Seoul, while the second bill shows the damages when I came again to purchase two cruffins and two donuts for Oppa’s sisters as I was meeting them for the first time that night. It costs 5,500 won (~USD$4.89) for one cruffin in the outlet at Seoul, while it costs USD$4.50 per cruffin at San Francisco. One donut costs 4,400 won (~USD$3.92) in Seoul, while one donut costs USD$3.50 in San Francisco. The chocolate croissant costs 2,800 won (~USD$2.49). Although I got the butter croissant and matcha croissant at the outlet in SF for USD$3 and USD$4 each, it is difficult to compare the prices as chocolate croissant are quite common in bakeries. As with all cafes in Seoul, the beverages usually cost more so being charged with 6,000 won and 6,200 won for Matcha Latte and Iced Mocha respectively is quite a standard rate.
Opens daily from 10:00am to 10:30pm
Nearest Station: Sinsa via Line 3 (Orange Line)
Although I am usually chewing fruits for my breakfast at work, having a densely carbohydrate food filled with flavoured surprises during a cooling and breezy day at Spring in Seoul felt good! I am so glad to have a taste of the original Mr Holmes Bakehouse at San Francisco two weeks back and hope that I am able to have it at Los Angeles within these couple of days too.