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Neighborhood Eats: Canto 6, or, Pull it Together!

June 2, 2012

The talented baker at Canto 6 deserves a stronger supporting cast. Maybe this friendly cast of young women were tired from the lunch rush, but cafe counter service should not abide by the same rules of dine-in service with one server dedicated to only one customer. Moreover, there should not be collisions in the kitchen that threaten the integrity of my sandwich.

Entering Canto 6 on the corner of Washington and Green St.s in JP is to enter a shady outpost of natural wood flooring and baked goods. The glass counter case is jam-packed with offerings of sugar, butter, and flour. I went with a Gruyere croissant (the supposedly superb almond-chocolate croissant was not to be seen) and 3 caneles (my first) for $1.50. I’ve had some of the cookies here and the quiche at work and those are excellent as well.

As you can tell from this photo, the caneles were done on outside to the point of being a bit bitter but the interior was luscious and flavorful – like mini bread pudding but bouncier. I could probably eat a bag of these. The croissant was perfectly executed – an airy and tender center whose arches reminded me of cathedrals and a flaky exterior, subtle but strong with the scent and taste of good cheese. These croissant was the saving grace of the meal after the discordant experience The Goat in the Garden sandwich:

This looks really good right? Crusty bakery bread. Generous smears of goat cheese looking out from behind the bread curtain. Hints of arugula and celery root colesaw poking out from underneath pickled beets. I had high expectations.

The bread: As good as expected with a chewy crust outlining a pleasantly yeasty slice.
The beets: Crunchier than the salad bar variety but also surprisingly flavorless considering the pickling they had supposedly undergone. I missed the soft sweet-corn taste of the beets I’m used to.
The slaw: Hard like the beets and again, not much gained in terms of flavor. Kind of felt like I was chewing a limp nest at this point.
The arugula: Great, hard to mess up unadulterated arugula.
The goat cheese: A+ for portion

So if I were counting by each component of this sandwich, 3/5 were great. Too bad this sandwich contained more than three ingredients and that the other two made this eating experience tiresome rather than awesome. Moreover, I think a sandwich should be judged by the harmony of its players.

Canto 6 – definitely get something from the counter case but evaluate the potential cohesiveness of the sandwiches on your own. Oh, and, be prepared to be patient.


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