If you remember my previous posts and tweets about macaron jewelry, paintings, and cookbooks, you will know that I am crazy about these little French pastries. The funny thing is that I’ve never had a macaron, and I’m not in New York or Paris, the privileged homes of Ladurée, and arguably the final word on the macaron. Curiosity, determination, and a hearty appetite and tooth for sweets meant that I was going to search my town and backyard for a patisserie who specialised or had a spot for the coveted treats.
I had no luck in Comox. The Cakebread Artisan Bakery only offered one flavour –a chocolate macaron for $2.00. Little Man didn’t think it was worth it. I had to agree.
In Vancouver, the grass was much greener. I found Thierry Chocolaterie Patisserie Café, Bel Café, Thomas Haas, and Murchie’s Tea & Coffee, among others. However, one shop stood out in particular –Soirette Macarons & Tea. Having the word ‘macarons’ in it’s name, I figured they knew the little cookies inside and out, and I planned to visit them the next time I was in town.
So I did! Yesterday, a dear friend and I went on a girly date (acting like ladies who brunch-’n-lunch… hee hee) and I suggested Soirette as the perfect spot to do just that. I ate my first macaron, folks! (Three, really, but I wasn’t counting, just chewing…)
We oohed over the gorgeous outdoor seating, and I fanatically snapped photo after photo. In total, I came away with about 40 snapshots of the place. What I am sharing with you is a finely edited and curated collection…
We then went inside, to be greeted by this:
How could anyone resist such a sight? The girls behind the counter were all so friendly and knowledgeable, one can tell that they care. I’m also grateful to them for allowing me to take so many photos.
We deliberated over our macarons carefully. Both M and I are afflicted with the disease of indecisiveness when confronted by such a dazzling multitude of choices, but in the end we narrowed it down to three each.
♥ Savoury White… Jasmine? (I forget the name.) ((It’s Savoury White Truffle! M has set the matter straight. ))
♥ Earl Grey (This was her favourite, I believe.)
♥ Caramel Fleur de Sel (Some parts tasted like… chocolate? And other parts like caramel.)
♥ Raspberry (Yum!)
♥ Pistachio (Intriguingly delicious.)
We went outside, sat down, and then opened the box with great ceremony. I tentatively took my first bite, because by this point, I was a bit worked up (over a cookie, I know, I know…) and was worried that I would be disappointed. I wasn’t, though… and every bite and flavour was divine. They were, in my friend’s words, ‘just the right size’. And just the right elegance, too –including the charming little place. I felt so Audrey Hepburn-ish, sitting outside on a beautiful day, dreaming and enjoying a good bite… and Tiffany’s was only a block or so away. It was, quite simply, Romantic.
After we had finished the contents of the box, we went back inside to finish it off properly with some tea. This also gave me the chance to snap away with the camera again.
It is a haven of refinement inside, and the charm extends even into the washroom. I could come here to share warm moments with friends, or even alone and be just as perfectly happy to sit in a nook and indulge in a good read and a sweet. The ambiance is conducive to both sharing and quiet reflection.
Our tea came after a few minutes, looking very polished with tiny flower petals scattered on top…
It was definitely a day of firsts, as I tried out ‘London Fog’ for the first time. What a cozy drink! I think it has officially taken the Pumpkin Spice Latte down to second place as my favourite autumn sip.
Cardigan: Simons retro bow jacket
Top: Simons velvet bow tee
I’m so thrilled that I have finally tasted a macaron, and to have found such a taking little place. I am absolutely smitten with it, and I look forward to visiting it whenever I need a bit of feminine indulgence and quality time.
What are you waiting for? If you haven’t been to Soirette yet, drop in and say hello to the ladies at 1433 W Pender Street, Vancouver!
– Miss Cathie