Disclaimer: I was invited to a tasting by Monplaisir Macarons. All food was complimentary but opinions are my own.
Monplaisir Macarons is based in Calgary but the owner Jean-Marc Mons and his wife are hoping to expand into the Vancouver market so they set up a tasting event at the Best Western Plus Chateau. The macarons are made with 100% natural ingredients and are certified gluten-free. They do not use any animal gelatin, preservatives, additives or trans fat. Jean-Marc’s goal was to make the macarons as authentic as possible.
Flavours available are: Tiramisu, Nutella, Lemon, Passion, Pistachio, Honey Lavender, Caramel, French Vanilla, Creme Brulee, Raspberry, Red Velvet, White Chocolate and Cookies and Cream.
I’ve never made it to Soirette before because the location was slightly out of the way in the Coal Harbour area but I was eating at Aki Japanese Restaurant and Soirette happened to be down the block so it was the perfect opportunity to drop by. They seem to be mostly known for their macarons and they also do afternoon tea as well. I love how cute the store is!
Look how fancy this box is! Too bad it sorta blends in with my grey desk. Continue reading →
It was a super sunny day in Vancouver which was also rare but it was a sign that spring had come! I happened to be in downtown on this lovely spring day and decided to drop by Bel Cafe for a macaron. I got caught up in the macaron craze last year but I still have a lot left to try! Bel Cafe is located beside Pacific Centre in the Rosewood Hotel Georgia. They also serve a variety of sweets and savoury sandwiches and of course coffee. Bel Cafe is also the sister store to Hawksworth Restaurant. The interior was cozy looking but not too big either.
Excuse my textbook! They had about 10 flavours of macarons and I settled for the cookies and crème. Yes just one! The top was sprinkled with cookie crumbs and the macaron had nice “feet”. These are a bit smaller than the ones from Thierry but equally yummy! The cookie part was a bit more on the crunchy side and it could have been more chewy. The filling may be on the sweet side for some people but I didn’t mind. It tasted exactly like cookies and creme! At $2 each after tax, this was pretty good and I would come back to try their other desserts as well. The service was also very friendly! I was offered water even though I was just sitting there to eat my one macaron and read a bit.
Faubourg! I’ve wanted to try it for so long after taking the bus past it almost everyday for the last year. All their small cakes were $5 each and they had quite a variety too. They also had Vancouver’s favourite dessert: Macarons! They’re everywhere now! These looked a bit smaller than the ones from Thierry. They cost $14 for a box of 8 but I didn’t get any this time. Instead I picked up two small cakes to go. I hate how it takes forever for me to decide on something since they all looked so scrumptious and I can’t afford to buy them all :(
After staring at the display case for ages while the servers patiently waited to take my order, I decided on the giant raspberry coconut macaron and chocolate caramel tarte.
I gave my friend the macaron. I think I picked it because it looked intriguing… I only tried the chocolate caramel tarte and it was really good! The chocolate was partially melted and gooey with the caramel layer underneath at the bottom of the tart. The tart itself wasn’t really flaky or anything since it had to hold all the filling but the filling was really sweet if you eat the whole thing! Even for me and my sweet tooth… It also got a bit messy while I was eating it but it was still very enjoyable.
Overall their pricing is good and on par with other dessert places of the same calibre. I would love to come back and try their other offerings. I heard their croissants are pretty good too!
For my friend’s birthday, we decided to go for afternoon tea at Patisserie Fur Elise. I’ve heard a lot about how cute it is from all the reviews and we also had a coupon from Klip magazine too for 10% off so I was pretty excited to try it! :) It’s located inside a cute heritage house on Hamilton Street.
On the first floor they sell a small variety of baked goods such as croissants, macarons and small pieces of cake. And they were reaaaally small (size matters!). I expected a bit more variety in the baked goods though the display case looked a bit empty. Maybe they need to use up the space better. Not sure how good they were but my friend bought two pieces to go. They cost about $6 each.
They actually didn’t have a lot of cakes in the display case, maybe they keep them elsewhere? But the waitress behind the counter said that they get to take them home if they don’t sell out :O What a great place to work!
Unfortunately there was no seating area downstairs and the upstairs area is reserved for afternoon tea customers only.
I really love the furniture and decor here! Everything seems so elegant.
Behind the counter!
The tea menu. Most of the teas didn’t seem that appealing so I stuck with the early grey.
Cute tea set! There was a strainer for the tea leaves but it didn’t really work that well. Near the end my tea got really bitter because it had been steeped for so long with all the tea leaves. My friend tried the Mango Flip tea and we concluded that it tasted like hot Vitamin water :S I also sampled the blueberry yogurt tea and the honey sweetened tea and both were nice. The blueberry yogurt wasn’t actually was weird as it sounds.
This was a coconut creme brulee that they brought to use before our tiers were ready. It was like a mini appetizer. It was really good! There was a piece of mandarin orange at the bottom and the coconut creme was very smooth and flavorful. It was also not too sweet.
Our lovely tier!!! :) Yummmm! And look at the beautiful detailing on the table!
The scones were quite soft and buttery. The cucumber sandwiches weren’t very specal though and it just had the dill pickle kind of cream cheese in it. The croissants were very good, also buttery and flaky. There was also some kind of basil leaf in it which gave it a slightly bitter taste at times or it might have been just me… The mushroom quiche was salty but a bit better than it looked. I wish it had more filling though and it didn’t really look like a quiche either. The black currant jam was also a nice touch to the scones.
Isn’t it pretty??? :D I got the lavender macaron and it didn’t really taste like lavender. It just tasted like sweet vanilla. Also it wasn’t as chewy as Thierry macarons but it was still ok. The tartlet had some kind of raspberry cream thing in the middle and some kind of lemon custard underneath. It was a nice combination and the tart crust was good too. The strawberry shortcake was their house special called the fur elise. There was a small piece of strawberry at the bottom. The outside layer was creamy and smooth and not too sweet. The chocolate torte was SUPER bitter in my opinion and I do like dark chocolate but combined with the really thick texture of the chocolate it was a bit too bitter. It just tasted like it wouldn’t melt in my mouth because it was so thick. Finally we all left the lychee jelly thing for last since it didn’t look as appetizing compared to the other treats. It was ok… it did taste like lychee but nothing special though.
My favourite items were the scones, the croissant and the tartlet. The service was good too the waitress was attentive and friendly and she introduced all the items to us. I thought the place was just super cute and girly =) Since this is just my second afternoon tea experience I still don’t have much to compare with besides Hotel Vancouver and I can’t really say which one was better but price wise this is cheaper. I wouldn’t have gone to Hotel Vancouver if it weren’t for the dealfind voucher. I think this is enough afternoon tea for this year!
PS. they also have a really nice spacious bathroom and they play classical music in there. Just thought you might wanna know.
If you’ve read my previous Theirry post, you’ll know I’m overly excited and in love with this place <3 So here I am again one week later! :D Don’t worry this will be a shorter post hehehe
After being super full after that one slice of chocolate tart, sharing was the way to go!
We got a lychee macaron (pink) and a coconut macaron and the tiramisu. The lychee macaron actually had a piece of lychee inside! The coconut one was even better because it was filled with chocolate filling =D The tiramisu (“mascarpone sabayon+ coffee/kahlua soak”) was also very good and surrounded by pieces of dark chocolate. Ok I can’t quite describe the cake but the “coffee soaked” part was indeed soaked because the plate got moist and it was quite creamy? It was very different from the tiramisu I tried at Sweet Revenge. All I can say is that this was definitely lighter and less sweet than the chocolate tart! That was a bit of overkill…
OMGGGG I finally went to Thierry!!! :D I’ve heard lots about this place and it seems like the perfect place to go for a dessert lover like me! Finally managed to drag my BFF there ;)
Tiramisu, Passion Fruit Tart, Cream puff thing?
Ahhhh they were so pretty!
…opera cake, lemon tart…and other yummy things I can’t name! :D
Some types of cookies?
My beautiful chocolate tart! I get the first slice!!! ^___^
See with so many temptations it’s hard to decide what to order! Especially if it’s your first time there so we paced back and forth for quite a while…
The lovely display on the POS.
They also sell gourmet ice cream here.
Various Flavours of Caramel.
Chocolate Hazelnut Macaron and Chocolate Trio
Ok this is what my friend ordered! “white, milk and dark chocolate mousse + chocolate sponge”. MMMM this was really good! She said it felt light but ended up being really full afterwards.
Chocolate Tart and Chocolate Pistachio Macaron
I opted for the chocolate tart even though it was more expensive than all the other items but it looked really chocolatey! It was quite heavy and there was more than enough chocolate in this! You could taste the dark chocolate and it was really thick and I really needed water afterwards. I almost couldn’t finish it and I didn’t even eat lunch… Crust was buttery and flaky enough but didn’t fall apart.
Chocolate Pistachio Macaron
I think this is the first time I’ve had a real macaron before and Thierry did not disappoint! The texture was hard on the outside but a bit chewy on the inside and the filling was slightly cold. Ahhhhh I’m in loveeee <3 I’m sorry my descriptions are terrible though…
Chocolate Hazelnut Macaron
Another close up! But less close this time. It had a fancier name and we had to ask the server what flavour it was and she said it was chocolate hazelnut. Both macarons were good! I think they’d all be good ^^ Oh and these cost $1.95 each. While we were there around 3:30pm there were quite a lot of people there. The seating area was almost full and it was a nice day so the outdoor patio was full too.
Needless to say, I HAVE TO COME BACK!!! I already demanded a box of macarons for my birthday too (since we can’t quite afford a cake here anytime soon). ;)
This was my first successful food adventure with ChubbyBunny077! I know it’s quite shocking considering how we’ve been friends since grade 8. In my defense, I’m not a picky eater per se 8-) certainly not when it comes to all types of food but I just happen to like some foods more than others . . . a lot more than others. I just don’t have an adventurous side when it comes to trying out new foods like ChubbyBunny077 & Wavayto do. But hey, this is what friends do, right? They push you to do better in school and life in general. And with ChubbyBunny077, she’s been pushing me to try new foods and that’s never an ill-conceived idea especially when it’s to try out Thierry’s desserts and macarons!
To quote Chef John, macarons are the world’s untrendiest desserts right now. But in all seriousness, I just thought they were more ‘cute’ than actually delicious or even ‘foodgasmic’. Well, needless to say, the macarons were absolutely divine! The filling for both the pistachio and gianduja (chocolate hazelnut) really set them apart from other macarons! (Not that I’ve tried other macarons except say oh, ChubbyBunny077’s cookie ‘macarons’ :P) The mesh of the meringue disks and the flavourful fillings blended exquisitely together in my mouth. And now, I can’t wait to try out the other flavours. I’ve got my eye on the lycee and vanilla ones!
The chocolate trio cake was good too but incredibly filling! The macarons simply overshadowed the cake because they were just too standout! Don’t get me wrong, the layers and textures worked beautifully together but my heart goes out for the macarons.
Recently my favourite YouTube chef, Chef John, put up a video for chocolate macarons so a friend and I decided to try it! This recipe required almond meal/almond flour and I went to Safeway and didn’t find any. I found some at Pricesmart Foods but they ran out. Then I found some finely ground almonds there which is essentially what almond meal/flour is so I just bought that. However we sort of failed because we forgot to rewatch the video and uhm missed some steps… BUT ANYWAY they still tasted good! LOL so here are a few photos haha
Stiff Peaks for Egg Whites!
You can see the bag of ground almonds in the back.
Ok I think we made these a little too flat =( Then it lacked that texture when you bite into it because well there wasn’t much to bite into… We did a swirly pattern which didn’t work that well since they were too flat.
Mixing in the dry ingredients!
In the oven!
These are actually the green tea ones we made after. They were a tad bitter because I added too much green tea powder. These macaron measurements need to be extremely precise! ><
Assembled together! Ours were actually pretty big so they looked more like cookie sandwiches than macarons! haha Instead of making our own filling we just decided to use nutella and that worked out quite well too. Even with the green tea ones! XD Our macarons lacked the little “feet” that they’re suppose to have around the edges and the texture wasn’t there either. They were really more like cookies… but anyway they still tasted good so maybe next time we can improve some more! Maybe they can look like this next time!