Saturday, January 1, 2011

A Pick-me-up

Some first bites are revelatory. You have to pause for a moment and contemplate as you chew, and when the bite is over, you sit back and sigh in bliss before going for the second. The best are unexpected, like the one a couple of nights ago on the way home. We were trudging through the dim, dreary streets on our way back to the centre of the city when a store-window display caught my eye--a golden tree made of macarons. We weren't really hungry, but I insisted that we stop for a quick bite.
We found ourselves in a bright, white cafe with rows of pretty confections on display--gin-and-tonic marshmallows, croissants, cakes, and macarons, of course. And beyond the cafe tables, a large glass window revealed a handful of kitchen staff, pastry bags in hand, piping away dedicatedly. The aesthetic was clinical, in a cute way, like a laboratory but for sweets.
We chose three macaron flavours to sample: salted butter caramel, mojito, and chestnut. Each was transcendent--delicate, generously filled, and deeply flavourful. It was difficult not to order a dozen more to take home. The mojito, especially, was incredible--it was minty, of course, but also surprising fresh  and not at all like toothpaste (always a danger with minty things, it seems). I will definitely be back, if only to sample the other flavours.
So if you find yourself dragging your feet along Queen St W in Toronto on a dreary day, stop in at Nadege Patisserie for a sweet little pick-me-up and a good cup of tea.
Oh yes, and Happy New Year.

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