Croissants may be the last thing that can make you go through the hassle of enduring bumper-to-bumper traffic and year-round heat in the Philippines, but Ijo Bakery Viennoiserie in Lipa, Batangas is here to make it all worthwhile.
Manned by a Lipa local who’s a Michelin-trained pastry chef, Joaquin Katigbak put up this small shop which houses his flaky and buttery croissant creations that should be on anyone’s Batangas itinerary.
Here’s the full menu at Ijo Bakery:
If you’re curious to know what the fuss is all about, here are the different items we ordered at Ijo Bakery:
Of course, we had to try the most basic croissant first! The Plain Croissant (P95) is what the bakery uses as the base for their other flavored croissants. The impressive lamination of this croissant results in crisp and flaky layers that are buttered, not over, but just enough.
And even though it’s on the pricier side, the proportions of this croissant measure close to a whopping six inches, length-wise that is. A piece of this gigantic croissant can already make you full, what more if you get the ones with fillings?
Like the bestselling Ham and Cheese Croissant (P185) that has ham slices and cheddar cheese rolled into the croissant. But f you want something along the lines of a pain au chocolate, grab the Chocolate Croissant (P125) instead, which has two sticks of indulgent dark chocolate on each side, or the Mocha Twice Baked (P160) which is a chocolate croissant stuffed with mocha-flavored filling in the center.
We also got to try the Almond Croissant (P140) and the Pistachio Croissant (P140), both sliced open in the middle and stuffed with a custard filling, topped with a cookie-cracking topping, similar to coffee buns, but with nuts (almonds or pistachio).
The sweetest croissant we got to try from Ijo Bakery is the Dulce Banana Croissant (P160). This croissant is stuffed with banana and caramel, perfect for those who have a sweet tooth.
While Ijo Bakery is known for its croissants, you shouldn’t miss out on their other baked goods too. One that we really could not get enough of is the Apple Tart (P155) which has a tart, cinnamon-y apple topping, placed on top of a custard-filled croissant tart.
Not a fan of apple desserts? Ijo Bakery’s Flan Brulee (P155) is a safe option if you love the likes of leche flan. This tart has hefty layers of custard in the center, then burnt to give it that signature brulee look: a caramelized topping and charred edges.
We also got to try the Cheesewheel (P145) which is more of a pastry than it is a croissant. It’s topped with sugar, butter, and cheese, with even more creamy cheese custard in the center, right underneath is the flaky pastry.
The Brownie Flower (P155) is one of the prettiest items the bakery offers. They shaped the pastry into four petals and added a brownie in each petal plus the center. The brownie bites are moist and delicious, which interestingly enough, has a pleasant contrast to the flakiness of the chocolate croissant.
As for the bakery’s Vanilla Custard Cruffin (P150), this is a tall croissant-muffin placed inside a paper cup, then filled with your choice of filling: vanilla, hazelnut, or coffee. We chose the vanilla custard and it was generously stuffed halfway through so you get a good amount of the custard and the croissant.
What we loved at Ijo Bakery:
Wondering why we tried so many Ijo Bakery items? Before you head over to Ijo Bakery Viennoiserie, you should know that they usually ask you to fill up a box of six pastries. Given their wide selection of baked goods, it wasn’t difficult to fill up the box.
If we had to choose our favorites out of the 12, our vote goes to Ijo Bakery’s Plain Croissant, Apple Tart, and the Almond Croissant or Pistachio Croissant. The latter is basically the same, all except for the nut used.
Ready to stuff yourself with /kwa-sons/? Ijo Bakery Viennoiserie is located inside the Big Ben Complex, along President Jose P. Laurel Highway, Lipa, Batangas.
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