Arán, which means "bread" in Old Irish, is a pricey craft bakery in Budapest's hip Jewish Quarter run by Kinga and Attila Pécsi. The couple spent a decade living in Ireland and it was there that Kinga mastered her baking skills. Arán lives up to its moniker: the whole wheat, rye, and white breads are all wonderful, imparting the signature, slightly sour taste of long-fermented sourdough. On Fridays, they also make kalács, a sweet roll similar to a challah.
While bread is the specialty here, some of the pastries are also good, especially the light and moist and sugary cinnamon bun, which is impossible to stop eating (and the first thing they tend to run out of). There's also cruffin, a half-croissant, half-muffin concoction made with a rotating set of stuffings. Try to go in the morning for the best selections. Note that Arán makes only international favorites, so don't go looking for Hungarian classics like túrós batyu (cottage-cheese bun) or kakaós csiga (chocolate roll) here.
To remain unbiased, I visit all places incognito and pay for my own meals and drinks. But this also means I must rely on readers to support my work. If you've enjoyed this article, please consider making a donation.