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Get yourself buttered up

By Ike DeLorenzo
Globe Correspondent / November 10, 2010

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Consider this your croissant app. Some are better than others. Here’s what we tasted:

Au Bon Pain locations

Bread in roughly the shape of a croissant, with an aggressive chemical-butter aftertaste.

Canto 6

3346 Washington St.. Jamaica Plain, 617-983-8688

Plain $2; Gruyere, chocolate $2.25; pear and blue cheese $2.75.

Light, airy, satisfying, and interestingly untraditional with an exaggerated shape and pronounced (Vermont) buttery quality. Marvelous chocolate croissants. Every neighborhood should have a small, talented, hard-working bakery like this.

Clear Flour Bread

178 Thorndike St., Brookline, 617-739-0060 (no seating)

Plain $2.50; chocolate, Gruyere, apricot $2.80.

Classy and wonderful butter croissant bred with New England civility. The lines are worth it.

The Danish Pastry House

330 Boston Ave., Medford, 781-396-8999 (full cafe); 205 Arlington St., Watertown, 617-926-2747 (no seating)

Plain $2; almond, chocolate $2.75.

Competent, consistent croissant. Buttery and pleasant.

Flour Bakery + Cafe

12 Farnsworth St., Boston, 617-338-4333; 1595 Washington St., Boston, 617-267-4300; 190 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, 617-225-2525

Plain $2.25; almond $2.75.

Inconsistent, but always an adventure. On a good day, croissants are flaky but still quite heavy. On a bad day, they can be tough with a faint chlorine taste. A work in progress, according to owner Joanne Chang in her book, “Flour.’’

Iggy’s Bread of the World

130 Fawcett St., Cambridge, 617-491-7600

Plain $2; chocolate, almond $2.25; ham and cheese, feta $2.50.

Widely available at local cafes. Good, but bready; made to last in the pastry case.

Japonaise Bakery & Cafe

1020 Beacon St., Brookline, 617-566-7730; 1815 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, 617-547-5531; 1032 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, 617-738-7200

Plain $2.25; apple, ham and cheese $2.75; almond $2.95; maple pecan $3.50.

Boston’s best answer to France. Effortlessly sexy, brilliantly perfected after 25 years of practice.

Sel de la Terre

Croissants at two locations: 255 State St., Boston, 617-720-1300; 1245 Worcester St., Natick, 508-650-1800

Plain $1.75; chocolate $2.75.

Competent and consistent, croissants are made at Sel de la Terre’s central bakery.

Sofra Bakery and Cafe

1 Belmont St., Cambridge, 617-661-3161 (weekends only)

Plain $2.50; pistachio, whole wheat $3.

These whole-wheat croissants are light and buttery with a nice savory finish from the whole grain. Available in plain butter, or spiced with a blend of rose petal, sumac, and toasted sesame — aromatic and delightful.

Starbucks locations

Bready and mercifully uninteresting, but very consistent. Resemble bread-replicas of croissants.

The Four Seasons Hotel

200 Boylston St., Boston, 617-338-4400

Small, almost miniature croissants are light with a crisp, flaky exterior and a satisfying buttery taste. The price is jumbo-size: $7 for two, accompanied by a $6 pot of coffee.

Frozen dough for at-home bakers

Williams-Sonoma $39.95 (plus about $10 for 2-day shipping) for 15 croissants, www.williams-sonoma.com.

L’Epicerie $15.60 (plus about $25 for shipping) for 12 croissants, 866-350-7575 or www.lepicerie.com.