Hmong Baker “The Brioche Lady” Opens Her Own Asian Grocery Store in Fresno

Renowned for her fluffy French bread, The Brioche Lady has returned, assuming a new role as the proprietor of an Asian grocery store.

While many people are familiar with Nubchi Thao for her delectable French brioche bread sold at farmers markets and her previous bakery, The Brioche Lady Bakery, she has now taken on the role of an Asian grocery store owner. Thao is of Hmong descent and was raised in France, where she acquired her expertise in baking French bread.

Located in Tarpey Village at the intersection of Ashlan and Clovis avenues, the newly opened store named TBL Asian Market is situated between the Arco station and the Sno-White Drive-In, replacing the former Golden Phoenix Asian Market, which was owned by Thao’s relatives.

According to Fresnobee, customers can now immerse themselves in a culinary journey spanning Filipino, Vietnamese, and various other cuisines. The store’s fresh vegetable section showcases an assortment of items, including fresh Thai peppers, okra, lychee, and rambutan—a peculiar fruit adorned with distinctive red whiskers.

The market boasts an extensive selection of noodles and rice, catering to diverse tastes. Moreover, the snack aisle entices shoppers with an array of treats sourced from several countries. From cookies originating from various regions to chocolate-dipped Pocky sticks, Japanese mochi desserts, and even wasabi peas, the store caters to a wide range of palates. Adding a touch of warmth and familiarity, one is likely to encounter the Thao family’s children among the store’s employees. 

In addition to on-site baking, Thao is exploring alternative avenues for customers to enjoy her beloved bread. She intends to introduce a brioche mix, empowering customers to bake their own loaf at home by simply adding eggs, water, and butter.

Furthermore, she is developing a larger version of the mix tailored for bakeries and restaurants. Additionally, Thao seeks to establish partnerships that would allow others to bake her recipe and serve the thriving Hmong community, which holds a strong affinity for her bread.

Featured Image Source: The Fresno Bee