Beard Papa's has been serving up delightful puff pastries since 1999. Originally from Osaka, Japan, this franchise has spread all over the world to the countries of China, Australia, Russia, and the U.S. just to name a few.
"You just missed the afternoon rush," explained Christopher, a Beard Papa's employee and nephew to the owner of the Beard Papa's bakery located in the Best Plaza in Cerritos. Christopher's aunt opened the family-owned business three years ago -- immediately after he returned from pastry school in France.
Beard Papa's specializes in cream puffs filled with a variety of sweet and tasty fillings. Customers can enjoy the store's modern and inviting interior while their puffs are filled to order. Aside from the fillings, there are a variety of shell options for people to choose from as well.
When I was perusing through online reviews of popular sweet shops in the area, it was obvious that Beard Papa's cream puffs have won the hearts of many and I was determined to see what all the fuss was about. The following is a list of what I tried and how I liked them:
- Vanilla Cream Puff: The crunchy exterior is a nice contrast to the puffy and creamy center. The shell is flaky and is cool, sweet, and tasty. If you are a fan of classic cream puffs or custard, you will love this pastry.
- Chocolate Cream Puff: These chocolate delights are a great substitute for other heavier chocolate alternatives. The shell is covered with just a touch of cocoa powder and the chocolate filling is light in flavor.
- Strawberry Cream Puff: Like the chocolate custard, the strawberry filling is a light yet flavorful option. Reminiscent of a strawberry shortcake, the combination of the flaky puff pastry with the sweet taste of strawberries makes for a great summer treat.
- Eclair: Essentially, Beard Papa's eclair is their standard cream puff with the top dipped in dark chocolate. The dark chocolate works well with Beard Papa's pastries. The pastry is a little more flaky than a typical eclair, but it is yummy nonetheless.
- Paris Brest: Traditionally, a brest is choux pastry that is cut in half and filled with whipped cream. The Beard Papa's version is similar to a churro ring filled with custard. More condensed than the options at Beard Papa's, the brest is easier to manage, less messy, and still offers the same great taste.
- Cookie Shell: If you are looking for more bite for your buck, the cookie shell may be a good option for you. There are crunchy bits that cover the pastry shell and add a different taste and texture to your standard cream puff.
- These delectable delights are addicting! They are light, come in a variety of flavors and textures, and they taste good.
- Beard Papa's has more than just cream puffs. You may come to the store for cream puffs, but you may leave with much more! Mochi ice cream, fondant, and boba drinks are also available at Beard Papa's.
- Cream puffs were not made with cleanliness in mind. The custard often seeps out of the pastry shell and onto your shirt, lap, or floor, so keep your napkins on hand!
- You will need to eat your puffs ASAP. Beard Papa's puffs are meant to be eaten immediately. They can become stale in just a matter of hours, even if refrigerated. With this in mind, your only options are to 1.) order only as many as you can comfortably eat or 2.) eat more than you can comfortably eat to ensure that your puffs don't get stale!
The only disappointing factor of my experience is that not all of the flavors were available. On the Beard Papa's website, the store boasts fillings like pumpkin, green tea, and coffee - none of which were available when I dropped by the Cerritos location. Even the Chocolate Dream Cocoa Puff, their newest (and most heavily promoted) item, was not available for sampling.
All things aside, Beard Papa's simply does the cream puff right. If, like me, you happen to miss out some of their popular flavors, it's simply more reason to come back! I will definitely be back to this sweet shop soon.
For more information on Beard Papa's, please visit their official website.