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Dominique Ansel closing with August Cronut
Photo: Amelia Hal

Dominique Ansel to close both of his London restaurants

The creator of the Cronut is shutting up shop and leaving the capital

Samantha Willis

Dominique Ansel bakery – aka the home of the Cronut – opened in Belgravia in 2016, and people absolutely lost their shit. The part-doughnut, part-croissant created by the French pastry chef had been trademarked in 2013 and in subsequent years became the most talked about sweet treat on the internet – drawing huge queues at his New York flagship and selling out in London within minutes on launch day. Today it was announced that, due to the adverse effects of the current crisis, the bread-based genius will be leaving London, and closing both of his restaurants.

When our food writer gave it a five-star review, she confirmed his hybrid lived up to its hype, saying: ‘Glazed on top, sugared and filled with soft cream, this miracle of pastry engineering somehow combines the flaky buttery layers of a croissant with the sticky gooeyness of a doughnut.’ 

Ansel’s continued success allowed him to open a second restaurant in the capital in February 2020, the Dominique Ansel Treehouse.

That success was cut short in March when Covid-19 hit hard and, today, the BigHospitality team reported that the celebrated French pastry wizard was quitting London. A spokesperson told them that, in light of the restrictions currently in place, they didn’t think it would be viable to operate either location at profit, and would cease trading at 7pm on August 31. Dominique’s team also thanked Londoners for their support and gave pastry fans a light at the end of the tunnel by refusing to completely rule out a return to the city one day.

So there you have it, London’s long sugary love affair with Dominique is coming to an end. Good news for your dentist, bad news for your kouign-amann cravings. There’s time for just a couple more, right?

But now where will I buy cracking pastries in the capital? We’ve tried them all for you and selected 9 of the best.

Will Rishi Sunak’s ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ scheme save London’s hospitality scene? We asked London’s restaurateurs for their verdict.


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