SOHO — A triumphant Dominique Ansel welcomed Cronut-lovers back to his SoHo bakery Tuesday morning, as the shop reopened following a mouse infestation and city-ordered shutdown.
"Thank you all for coming," Ansel told the shorter-than-usual line of customers stretched outside the 189 Spring St. bakery. "We took a hit, but today we're back. We're back stronger than ever."
Those who turned out in the misty rain said they were not bothered by the "several hundred of mouse droppings" officials said were found during last Friday's inspection, or the recent viral video of a mouse scampering through the bakery's kitchen.
Lester Sykes, 26, a Bed-Stuy resident who was near the front of the line after arriving about 6:50 a.m., said he was happy to try the "churro-like" pastry despite the bakery's recent Health Department issues, which he thinks are ubiquitous in the city.
"There's mice in there and there and there," he said, pointing to various establishments along Spring Street.
Hotel receptionist Marcin Gorski, 22, agreed.
"This is New York — the rat sizes here are crazy," the Ridgewood resident said. "A little mice is not a big deal.
"There are places out here that are so dirty, so nasty, and they're doing just fine," he added.
Jay Randolph, 41, a web video producer from the Upper West Side, said he felt the Health Department overreacted.
"Mice are going to pop up every once in a while," Randolph said. "I think [the video] came on YouTube so they have to make an example."
Some tourists, though, said they were a bit concerned about the reports on the mouse infestation.
Jennifer Nance, a mother of two from Atlanta, said she'd "rather come this week than last week," in light of the work the bakery had to do to get the Health Department approve the reopening.
"It's a little sketchy," agreed 27-year-old Jennifer Funk, a teacher from Utah. "But I think it'll be okay."