Back in December, I’d entered an Instagram contest sponsored by the Alliance Française de San Francisco (AFSF). To my delight, I’d won one of the prizes: a set of four French postage stamps featuring Joséphine Baker. I was thrilled and couldn’t wait to hold my prize. However, the fine print said that I’d have to pick it up in person and only during the weekdays. Although I’d been to the City a handful of times since December, I hadn’t had a chance to go on a weekday.

Recently, I took a mental health day and enjoyed a Friday in San Francisco. While I was there, I figured I could also pick up the Joséphine Baker stamps I’d won from the AFSF! Win-win!

After having a croissant and coffee at home, I got on BART headed for San Francisco.

From the Powell Street BART Station, it’s about a 2-block brisk walk north to ONE65 San Francisco, “an innovative multi-level culinary destination with French flair.”

That Michelin Star is for the O’ by Claude Le Tohic Restaurant, located on the 5th and 6th floors of ONE65 San Francisco

On this day, I simply wanted to peruse the sweet treats in the pâtisserie, located on the ground level. There were many beautiful confections: candies, macarons, viennoiseries, cakes, and tarts. The sensory overload made it impossible to choose. In addition, I’d just had breakfast before coming here, so I wasn’t starving. I even surprised myself when I passed on the vanilla macarons, as I love them!

Chocolate candies in a glass display case
Colorful macarons in a glass display case
Cakes and tarts in a glass display case
cakes and tarts
baked goods in a glass display case

Well, that all changed the moment I spotted the multi-layered butter croissants with raspberry ribbons. Un coup de foudre. It was love at first sight. I was this emoji: 😍! I mean, look at this beauty:

raspberry croissant on small plate next to a small cup of espresso on small saucer next to fork on napkin
chocolate raspberry croissant and an espresso

This was not a grab-n-go croissant you nibble from a brown crinkly ASMR parchment bag. Oh, no. This was a sit-down-at-a-table-with-napkin-on-your-lap-and-eat-with-stainless-steel-cutlery croissant.

That said, the pâtisserie didn’t seem to be a hoity-toity kind of place, which I appreciate. Nothing annoys me more than shopkeepers who appear annoyed with their customers because they expect them to make their selections quickly. At ONE65 San Francisco (named so because of its address, 165 O’Farrell Street), the people who work there seemed friendly and patient.

Needless to say, I couldn’t resist. Before I knew it, I was having a second croissant and second coffee of the day! I gave myself permission to indulge.

The sign in the display case said they were chocolate raspberry croissants, so when I sliced into the flaky, buttery layers, I thought the filling would only be chocolate, which would’ve been perfectly fine with me. When a closer look revealed it was chocolate and raspberry mixed together, I wondered, could this experience get any better? Yes, indeed – I enjoyed the rich aroma and flavor of the espresso, too. No cream or sugar needed!

At this point, I felt energized and ready to walk a dozen blocks west to the AFSF, or was I? At the same time, I wanted to stay put a little bit longer and enjoy some “me” time without apology.

To be continued…

ONE65 San Francisco | May 13, 2022

Tell me in the comments: What are some self-care practices you enjoy?