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Best Of 2013: French

Best Of 2013: Bread

This year, not only has La Baguette taken the French award for items like its rockin' French onion soup and cheese fondue, but it's reclaimed the Bread award it first won in 1994. The Old Colorado City locale is home to the bakers who produce for that shop, as well as for the separately owned downtown restaurant and La Baguette French Bistro on Chestnut Street, which has the most French offerings and serves dinner Wednesday through Saturday nights. A bakery staffer says though numbers fluctuate, they bake about 300 French rolls daily, Monday through Thursday. That means more than 62,000 rolls a year. A whole lotta baking — which doesn't even include their loaves, baguettes, batards, boules or to-die-for apple croissants. — Kirsten Akens

Bites 2013: Croque Madame

The Monte Cristo has nothing on the Croque Madame. It's the most gourmet ham-and-cheese you'll probably ever eat. Thick, buttered, grilled bread lathered in Dijon mustard holds pan-warmed ham and melted Swiss cheese, plus a cap of gooey Gruyère. Then comes the fried egg, ready to ooze its yolk downward, eventually to merge with an underlying puddle of Béchamel sauce. It's Parisian comfort food, perfected. ($9.95)

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