Top 5 international bakeries


French rainbow macarons in a variety of colors/flavors are a popular seller at JBJ’s Bakery in Carson. These bite-size morsels are light as air, flavorful and flaky, and can be addictive. Photo by Gary Kohatsu/Warrior Life Magazine

It must be an American pastime (or by conditioning) that whenever college students hit the books, they require a food run at the midway point. The challenge is to find the right pick-me-up snack.

Too often, college students fall back on familiar stand-bys, which can lead to gastronomic indifference: Burger and fries? Stale and soggy. Tacos and burritos? Burp and gas. Nachos and cheese? Runaway dripping. Fried chicken and biscuits? No cluck. Beer and pizza? Wake up!

Desserts? Ah, getting warm… Pastries with an international flavor? YES! There is nothing like a sugar high with a cultural twist. Going international can be just what the taste buds need to send a hungry student orbiting the galaxy and back in time to wrap up a study session.

Here are the top five international bakeries down the road from El Camino College.


Students who haven’t indulged in Filipino pastries might need a lesson in dessert etiquette. A Warrior Life recommendation is to sample JBJ’s Bakery in Carson — it might be a wakeup call to the tastebuds. JBJ’s is a family-owned business that has been around for 19 years and is as small as a pie box. However, many Yelpers swear by this bakery’s pastries, including its rainbow macarons.

Not to be confused with coconut macaroons, French macarons are flavorful treats that people pop into their mouth like doughnut holes. These flavorful bites are flaky, a little chewy, light as air and come in flavors such as green tea, passion fruit, mango, guava, Nutella and salted caramel. Macarons are sold individually or by the dozen for $13.50.

While desserts are menu stoppers, JBJ’s also sells fluffy pandesal bread, pastries, chicken bao, empanadas and spaghetti — Filipino style.

860 E. Carson St., Ste. 117, Carson


Website: None.

Facebook: JBJs-Bakery

Distance from ECC: 6.8 miles — 10 minutes travel time.

Sandia cookies and other pastries are a visual delight in shape and color, sweet and crumbly at Gardena’s Adelita Bakery. Most cookies are reasonably priced at three for $1.Photo by Gary Kohatsu/Warrior Life Magazine


Bakeries such as Panadería Nueva Adelita or Adelita for short, encompasses all of the wonderful aromas, tastes and visual colors of Mexico. This hole-in-the-wall business will fool many in its lack of ambiance. But the flavorful bolillo, pan dulce and even Mexican meals and drinks on its menu are worth the visit. Prices are reasonable and street parking is abundant.

14807 S. Western Ave., Gardena


Hours: Call

Order online:

Website: None

Distance: 1.8 miles from ECC — 4 minutes.

Baklava is a popular Mediterranean treat that is baked with ingredients such as honey, phyllo dough and ground nuts.Photo by Gary Kohatsu/Warrior Life Magazine


Technically this is a small Mediterranian-Middle Eastern restaurant, rather than a bakery. Customers might come for lunch, but will likely leave with dessert. Located in a huge strip mall, King Mediterrano gets a Yelp thumbs-up for its variety of tantalizing dishes, as well as its Baklava. This dessert is a piece of heaven, so flaky, tasty and decadent. A container of three costs $5.99.

4354 Redondo Beach Blvd., Torrance


Hours: Monday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; closed Sundays




Order: Doordash, Postmates

Distance: 1.8 miles from ECC — 4 minutes.

A Bavarian cream puff from the Alpine Village Market will cost $3.95 and is a visual and culinary delight. The bakery creates fresh desserts daily.Photo by Gary Kohatsu/Warrior Life Magazine


Alpine Village Market is still the hub of German food and products in the South Bay and its bakery is worth a visit. Consumers line up for the variety of sweet rolls, cream puffs, pretzels, cookies and cakes. The market bristles with activity and purchasing just one dessert item can be an agonizing but tantalizing experience. Eating any treat from Alpine Village Market can only be described as a heavenly indulgence.

833 W. Torrance Blvd., Torrance


Hours: Mon. To Thurs., 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Friday to Sunday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.


Email: [email protected]

Distance: 5.3 miles from ECC — 9 minutes.

Japanese confectionery is a staple among Asian and American pastry lovers in Los Angeles. Sakura-ya in Gardena has achieved near legendary status. Yelpers lavish this old-school, family business with adoring praise and return visits.Photo by Gary Kohatsu/Warrior Life Magazine


There is a reason why Sakura-ya has lured dessert lovers away from the downtown Little Tokyo bakeries. This tiny, confectionery shop in Gardena has remained unchanged since 1960 and that goes for the way Mas and Yuki Fujita prepare their daily treats. Fresh, ultra soft, delicious and flavorful are just some of the adjectives adoring Sakura-ya fans chant. The cost is $2 per pastry. Arrive early in the day for the best variety or risk going home empty-handed. The best bet is to call ahead or pre-order.

16134 S. Western Ave., Gardena


Hours: Wed. to Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.; closed Mon.-Tues.

Distance: 1.6 miles — 3 minutes.