Croissants are notoriously difficult to make. Even beyond the immense skill and patience required, you need to deal with the weather. A slight change in air temperature, humidity or even the heat in your hands can radically change your final product.

Whether they're yeast raised and prepped by a baker, or more patisserie in style and baked at high temperatures so steam separates the layers, there are a few things that mark a good croissant. It should be crisp but not overly crumbly. The dough within should be buttery and fluffy. When you pull at the sides, it should stretch rather than break.

This is the ideal, but even the best bakeries and pastry chefs have off days. These operators are the most consistent. They get closest to that dream every day. Just make sure to get in early – you'll never find a good croissant in the afternoon.

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Labancz Patisserie-Boulangerie

Classic French-style yeast-raised croissants.

719 Darling Street, Rozelle

Flour and Stone

Buttery, flaky, soft centred and, if you come at the right time, hot.

53 Riley Street, Woolloomooloo

Goose Bakery Cafe

A quiet place to sit with a pastry and a latte.

38 Ross Street, Forest Lodge

Rollers Bakehouse

No-rules croissants made with charcoal-dyed dough. Past fillings have included salmon, ginger and wasabi.

19 Rialto Lane, Manly

Staple Bread & Necessities

This one makes regular croissants, chocolate croissants and sticky “Balgowlah buns” made with croissant off-cuts.

Shop 1 20-28 Montauban Avenue, Seaforth

François Artisan Bakery

Traditional and new techniques baking techniques backed by 30 years' experience.

91 Bondi Road, Bondi

Penny Fours

Not often talked about, but up there with the best.

141 Norton Street, Leichhardt

Textbook Boulangerie Patisserie

The pastry chef used to work in Michelin-starred restaurants.

274 Botany Road, Alexandria

Black Star Pastry Newtown

Expansion can be rough on croissant-making, but Blackstar has kept up the standard.

277 Australia Street, Newtown

Choco Cannelle

Run by a third-generation French pastry chef.

Shop 1 2 Callaghan Street, Ryde