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This was a banner year for sugar fiends, with pedigreed bakeshops popping up around the city faster than fritters in sizzling oil. Among these sweet entrants—French-American café Bien Cuit, Bed-Stuy booster Dough and homespun charmer Zucker Bakery—you voted Dominique Ansel to the top. The haute wunderkind behind Daniel’s four-star desserts stepped out of Boulud’s shadow this year, delivering sugary delights like pastel meringue kisses; bright, airy macarons; and chocolate-slicked éclairs from his very own bakery. But it was his exotic offerings that really won you over. Ansel silenced all debates as to the city’s best croissant with his DKA—a caramelized, flaky take on the croissantlike Breton specialty kouign amann. And his cotton-soft mini cheesecake, an ethereally light gâteau with a brûléed top, left the dense old–New York classic sputtering in its dust. 189 Spring St between Sullivan and Thompson Sts (212-219-2773, dominiqueansel.com)