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Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014
South Tampa News

Piquant's croissant-doughnut hybrid hot seller


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Forget about the gluten-free, sugar-free and fat-free trends. It's the sweet and decadent croissant doughnuts that are selling out in the first two hours of the day at Piquant in Hyde Park Village.

Chef Rosana Rivera, who owns the French-inspired restaurant in South Tampa with co-owner chef Ricardo Castro, said the trend started in New York. The two Tampa chefs call their version of the trendy croissant-doughnut hybrid a "croissant donut" since the term "Cronut" is trademarked.

Rivera said the croissant doughnut is so popular they are sold out sometimes only a half-hour after opening at 8 a.m. Because they are made by hand, they can make only about 150 to 250 of the croissant doughnuts in a single day. Rivera said she knows why people are so addicted to the sweets because she shares the affection for confections.

"It's the buttery richness of the croissant and the warmth of a fried doughnut," Rivera said. "You have the perfect flavor combination and the feel of comfort food."

Rivera said she gives most of the credit for the doughnut recipe to Castro, who lives in Lutz.

Some of the popular flavors include cinnamon sugar, vanilla bean cream and Nutella. Each sugary confection costs about $3.

"He's very good," she said, referring to Castro. "He loves to fry anything and everything. He was playing with different dough and he perfected it one day. It was inspired by the trend in New York, but it's our interpretation of it."

Piquant, which translated means "appetizing to the palate," has been open in Hyde Park Village since January.

Rivera said all of the croissants are made from scratch. Piquant also serves omelets, banana bread, French toast and challah.

Amalia Carr, of Land O' Lakes, said she tried her first croissant doughnut this past Father's Day.

"It was delicious," Carr said. "They are to die for. They come in different flavors. My favorite is the vanilla bean crème. I have it with my cappuccino. That's my healthy breakfast - cappuccino with a croissant doughnut."

For more information on Piquant, located at 1633 W. Snow Ave., Tampa, call (813) 251-1777. It's open Monday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Lcone@tampatrib.com

(813) 731-2008

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