CHOC-O-PAIN French Bakery and Café
Bringing A Taste of France to New Jersey
Hoboken/Jersey City, NJ – July, 2015 – In every region of France, neighborhoods take their boulangeries, patisseries and cafés very seriously. These meeting spots offer locals a warm convivial atmosphere, delicious coffee, fresh homemade breads, pastries, and light fare. Choc-O-Pain has brought this warm and welcoming rustic French café experience, first to a quiet tree-lined street in Hoboken, and then to downtown Jersey City. With outdoor seating, an eclectic assortment of comfortable couches and chairs, and a small play area for children, CHOC-O-PAIN offers an environment that works for the whole neighborhood.
CHOC-O-PAIN’s Owner is French born Clémence Danko, who moved with her husband to Hoboken, NJ, back in 2009. After arriving to NJ from France, they were hard pressed to find a fresh croissant or a good baguette West of the Hudson River. Clemence made the decision to leave her pharmaceutical background behind, but not her passion for French food and culture. She spent the next year intensely studying at some of New York City’s most renowned culinary schools, and developing her business plan for Choc O Pain. While traditional bakeries in France are not places to linger or drink coffee, Clemence knew that she needed to adapt this idea and create her own version of what a boulangerie should be here in the U.S. Three years later, in
January 2012, CHOC-O-PAIN opened and Hoboken had its very first French bakery and café. Just one year later, in March 2013, CHOC-O-PAIN opened its’ second location, this time bringing the French lifestyle experience to Jersey City locals.
CHOC-O-PAIN bakes all of their bread in the traditional European way, using only 4 basic ingredients – flour, water, leaven, and a little bit of salt. The breads are all sourdough based and require a long, slow fermentation process. It’s this slow process which takes about 12 to 24 hours that develops the textures and flavors of each bread, creating just the right tang of sourdough, and the perfect ratio of crumb-to-crust. Baked fresh every day, Breads include their signature classic-style organic Pain D’Autrefois and Baguettes, rustic Bordelais Boule and Miche, their popular multigrain Pain Au Levain Aux Céréales (with oats, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, as well as flax and sesame seeds), and the customer-favorite, Banana Sourdough (made with fresh banana and a hint of shredded coconut).
On the sweet side, CHOC-O-PAIN’s Boulangerie offers freshly-baked Viennoiseries (classic French breakfast pastries): including light and flaky Petit Kouign (caramelized layers of bread dough with chocolate or seasonal flavors like raspberry or apple), or their signature ultra-buttery Croissants-and Chocopains; Tartes: including Abricots Almondine, Tarte Aux Pommes, and the Tarte Aux Fruits De La Passion, Pêches et Framboises (passion fruit, peaches, and raspberries); plus Macarons and other Desserts: such as Bread Pudding, Financiers (traditional small, sweet, nutty cakes), and Flourless Chocolate Heaven Cake. Paired with a steamy or iced latte or cappuccino from the world@renowned coffee@roasting company, La Colombe Coffee, or unsweetened hot chocolate (typically French), CHOC-O-PAIN’s breads and pastries make the perfect any@time meal or treat.
CHOC-O-PAIN’s Café Menu offers a savory selection of classics, plus their own French@inspired interpretations. Committed to using seasonal and locally@grown ingredients as much as possible, the menu includes a traditional Croque-Monsieur (slice of sourdough, homemade béchamel, D’Artagnan French ham & swiss cheese), Quiche-Lorraine plus a seasonal quiche such as the All Local Goat Cheese, Leek and Collard Green, and a seasonal Vegan Soupe Du Jour; Salads: Salade Fraiche De Lentilles; Ready Made Sandwiches: Jambon Emmental, Saucisson Sec Et Baguette, or Spicy Tuna (must-try tuna salad). To wash it all down, there’s Choc O Pain’s own organic lemonade, house-brewed iced-teas, homemade organic blood orangeade, and exquisite fruit juices and nectars from French producer, Alain Milliat.
In France, “épiceries” are small neighborhood shops that sell basic groceries along with specialty items. CHOC-O-PAIN’s Epicerie brings this old-fashioned “corner store” charm to the café, with a small but carefully selected assortment of hard@to@find French specialty items and cooking ingredients, such as French candies and artisanal chocolate, spices, mustards, salts, French sugar cubes, local Honey and Alain Milliat jams.
In April 2015, Clemence was honored to receive the Outstanding Alumni Award for Excellence in Bread Baking from the International Culinary Center. Other plans include CHOC-O-PAIN new production-only facility in Jersey City to open by the end of 2015. According to owner Clemence Danko, this new facility will lay the groundwork for meeting the future demand of CHOC-O-PAIN products West of the Hudson River.
CHOC-O-PAIN’s hours: Every weekday, 7:00am – 7:00pm ~ Weekends, 8:00am to 7:00pm 157 First Street, Hoboken NJ 07030 ~ 530 Jersey Avenue, Jersey City 07302