This powder-puff-pink shop pulls no punches when it comes to baking with integrity—and real butter

It’s a natural instinct, while at Antoinette Boulangerie in Red Bank, to set all mental faculties to deciding which of the exquisite little treats to try. But it isn’t necessary. Much like choosing among Tiffany-mount solitaires, you’re pretty much squared away regardless of choice.

The shop, after all, was named for Queen Marie Antoinette. “People say she didn’t really say Let them eat cake,’” said founding owner and general manager Ayca User. “She actually said, ‘Let them eat brioche,’ but we thought, ‘Well, we have bread…’ so we gave a little twist to it.”

User, together with sister, co-founding owner, and executive chef Zeynep Ozdemir and executive pastry chef Gina Roselle Broschart are the forces behind the operation.

“I think [a female-run business] just makes us feel stronger,” User emphasized. “It’s a good support system…keeps us going. We do have men in the kitchen—somebody needs to lift the 50-60 pound bags of flour—but we’ve been very fortunate. We’ve been open every single day, through every single snowstorm. We’ve been very lucky with the locals; they’ve been very welcoming.”

There’s a reason for that last bit, and it’s about solid ingredients. “All of our [them] are good-quality,” said User. Everything in the shop is made right there—no corner- cutting, no bringing in someone else’s pie crusts, no skimping on richness, along with 83% butterfat European-style butter, and chocolate imported from France.

When asked why they choose to bake from scratch, User did not hesitate in responding that, “You have full control over the quality. Same integrity, same quality.”


The bakery’s passion fruit pate de fruits are ethereal gumdrops with a wallop of honest fruit flavor. A teeny lemon curd tart is refreshingly unafraid of tasting like…lemon.

“There’s a lot of variety—eclairs, fruit tarts, different kinds of croissants,” User said. “Our pastries are rich…our variety richer.”

Making croissant dough—for most Earthly residents who haven’t given it a whirl—is about as labor-intensive as childbirth, but “…that’s the beauty of it,” said User. And of course she’s right. Most croissants Americans eat are factory-spat and taste like it, with a flabby consistency. A proper handmade croissant is, actually, quite firm on the outside and stretchy on the inside. The crust is supposed to shatter a little when you pull it apart, not squish like a glazed doughnut.

The bakery’s peanut butter bombe, a dome of dulce de leche/peanut butter ice creams and chocolate-coated glory, is a best seller. And “baguettes always sell out,” added User. They also offer 15 gluten- free items. “We’re still testing to see what sells, to see if it’s a keeper.”

Red Bank’s new bakery is, for certain.


Antoinette Boulangerie
8 32 Monmouth St., Red Bank
732.224.1118 /