Picnic by the Eiffel Tower!

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A trip to Paris is not the same without a picnic by the Eiffel Tower. For those of you who are traveling in Paris during the warmer months, this is a must! It’s just nice to take a break from intense traveling and get a feel of how the Parisians relax. And with a view so spectacular, this is the perfect place to do so. I would suggest bringing pastries and sandwiches from cafes near your hotel if you see them, since it can be quite difficult to look for food after you arrive at the Eiffel Tower. The park itself is huge and therefore requires a lot of walking to get to the other side. Anyways, we did not think of ahead, and ended up having to wander around looking for pastry shops. Luckily, we found Boulangerie Pâtisserie Felice Lapelosa. It is on Avenue Rapp, and offers a wide selection of pastries, sandwiches, and bread. There is always a constant in and out of customers, and most are locals. We ended up getting a chestnut eclair, which  was so fluffy and delicious! It wasn’t too sweet too! Then we got a quiche, which is pictured on the bottom right. This was alright as it wasn’t heated up enough. Lastly, we got a pineapple tart. This was quite good! The custard was smooth, and the hint of sweet and sour from the pineapple made it appetizing. We also wandered around and found a shop called Les Paris Gourmands. They have lots of chocolates, jams, and other sweets. We chose a mango macaron, which was a large size. This wasn’t the best macaron I’ve had, but the flavour was definitely interesting. My sister also picked up a jar of jam with rose petals. Unfortunately, this was confiscated in her carry on, and months later, I would have to head back here to purchase her jam again. Anyways, that happened, and now we currently have the jar in our fridge half full. It was definitely worth it as it surprisingly isn’t too sweet, and there are actually rose petals in it! The brand is called Favols, for those of you who enjoy jams, and apparently it can be found in many other stores that sell jam in Paris. Lastly, we picked up a bottle of rose in the grocery store. It was extremely cheap, and probably why it tasted pretty bad… Yea, maybe pick up a nice bottle of wine next time ; )

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Look at that view! We were lucky enough for it to be sunny that day, since it was rainy all the other days. After having a picnic, take a stroll in the park. Such a relaxing environment. Oh, but do beware that there are lots of people who are trying to scam you in this park. They ask if you would like to donate for some sort of cause, and they will ask you to sign a piece of paper. If you see these people around, just ignore them. They’ll ask if you speak English, so just pretend you don’t or else they will continue approaching you! Many are young adults or even children. I’m not sure exactly how they will scam you, but just beware! Better to be safe than sorry. Don’t let these people ruin your picnic! Enjoy 🙂

Patisserie Für Elise

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Patisserie Fur Elise is located in the Yaletown area, and you wouldn’t really even spot the place since it’s situated in an area that looks like residential area. I’m not sure what the houses next to it are used for, but it’s essentially at a Victorian-looking three story townhouse, and there is a row of these houses.

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When you step in, the right is the area for buying desserts to go. They have a variety of cakes, and of course macarons. The place is decorated with mini chandelier lights and gives a very girly and fresh feeling.

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For customers who would like to sit down for afternoon  tea, you must  make your way up to the second floor along this flight of stairs. I love how everything is like a fairytale!

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This was their window display on the first floor. Love how they have the Victorian-style dress, which the waitresses wore, and it’s like you’re at a tea party in the garden.

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On the second floor, this is where guests can enjoy their afternoon tea with grand furniture. It’s perfect to have a girl’s day out, and I believe you can even book the place to host parties. They have another seating area tucked away at the back, so there’s plenty of seats for you to choose from to have some quiet chats with your friends.

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They only have one afternoon tea menu with a pre-set menu and then a choice of tea. For $30, you get a choice of tea, a tier of savories, and a tier of sweets along with a Chef’s choice of a starter. I chose the Honey-Scented Tea, which is an award-winning black tea from Wuhe, Taiwan. It was described as rich and mellow, with a natural honey-like sweet aftertaste. I enjoyed it as it had a hint of honey flavour to it, but it wasn’t too sweet. J got the China Rose, which was a flavoured black tea with an aroma of roses. We peeked in her cute little teapot, and indeed there were rose petals. What’s unique is that they also give you a sand timer, and once it’s emptied to the bottom, it means your tea is ready. No need to guess how long we should wait. They also give you the cutest tea leaf strainer, which is shaped as a bird. The little details of their chinaware and furniture definitely wins a girl’s heart.

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Mandarin Creme Brulee

For the  Chef’s choice of starter, we were brought the Mandarin Creme Brulee. It’s got the creme brulee on the bottom, with a mandarin flavoured jelly on the top, topped with a slice of mandarin orange. At first, I thought it tasted a little odd, since I’ve never heard of a creme brulee with this fruit, but I started to enjoy it a few scoops in. The hint of tangyiness seemed to work with the sweet creme brulee. It was smooth and I enjoyed the jelly at the top.

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Afternoon Tea

Our two sets of afternoon teas were presented on two tiers, with the top as sweets and the bottom of savories. Each item was carefully crafted and presented and looked utterly adorable!

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A closer look at the savories… The sandwich was a Cucumber Dill Finger Sandwich, which was interesting since they didn’t put the cucumber between the slices of bread. Instead they placed it on top, and although it looked pretty, I had to dissect the sandwich and eat the cucumber on it’s own so it wouldn’t be too messy. To the right of the sandwich is the Prosciutto, Brie and Fresh Basil Sandwich. This was a mini croissant and I loved the combination of prosciutto and brie. The flavour from the fresh basil also complemented the sandwich really well. The hamburger look-alike was the Smoked Salmon Brioche. I found the brioche to be a little dry, so this one wasn’t one of my favourites. Lastly, there was the Bocconcini and Havarti Skewer. It’s got the two types of cheeses sandwiching a cherry tomato. I’m not a fan of tomatoes, so I didn’t exactly like this menu item, but I did enjoy the cheese. In the centre, there was the Scone served with a apricot house-made confiture. I’ve never been a big fan of scones since I find them too dry, so I can’t comment much on it.

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At the top of the tier were the desserts! This is always my favourite part. I’m also usually starting to get full at this point, but desserts are a must eat! I’ve always got room for some dessert… Anyways, the brown tart is an Orange Dulcey Daisy Tartlet, which had a hard tart shell at the bottom and the middle was a caramel type mixture and topped with a piece of pistachio. The green little square was a Mini Green Tea Chocolate Ganache with Red Beans. When I heard the name, I got extremely excited since I love green tea desserts. I think my expectations were set too high, because it ended up being quite disappointing. I found the texture to be too rubbery and the chocolate ganache just didn’t melt in my mouth. I was imagining some smooth chocolate just melting as I place it in my mouth, but that unfortunately didn’t happen. It was too sticky and gooey and stuck to your mouth. The pink dessert was a Mini Fur Elise, which is a strawberry mousse cake. I enjoyed this as it was light and not too sweet. And the white square was a Blueberry Cheesecake, although the menu said Lemon. It was a cheesecake square with a dented well in the middle and it was filled with some blueberry sauce so it would spill when you cut it in half. This was smooth and light as well. Delicious! And last but not least, we were a Macaron each, and I think I had the caramel one. It was decent, but definitely small in size. I think J has a lemon one.

To be honest, I felt that the service was lacking here. There were only two girls working, but it wasn’t that food was coming out slow. It was their attitude. They seemed so serious and didn’t really initiate much conversation, which I would’ve expected at an afternoon tea shop. They barely even smiled and I almost felt silly smiling back at them when they just had a serious look on their face. It kind of ruined the experience, but the menu items themselves were decent at an average price. What really makes up for everything is the awesome decor which isn’t found at many of the other afternoon tea shops. This one was unique and it made you feel special.

Patisserie Für Elise on Urbanspoon

Soirette Macarons & Tea

Tried all 21 flavours with a double for matcha, lavender and rocher 🙂

Rocher

Lavender Earl Grey Tea

Lavender Earl Grey Latte

Bought another box home 🙂

Matcha Macaron


Soirette Macarons & Tea
has been so talked about around Vancouver as one of the newest and top macaron shop in town! I had it on my wishlist on Urbanspoon and can definitely check that off now! And yes, I’ve got to agree with all those bloggers out there. It seems like they have the largest selection of macarons, and they are really specialized in them, as they only sell a few desserts on the side. I got a sneak peak in the kitchen when I was on my way to the bathroom and also saw the owner of the shop. Pretty cool! Soirette is located near the Coal Harbour area, and the store is furnished so that it feels extremely clean and bright. Everything is white and modern, and the colours of the macarons totally steal the spotlight. It can seat around 10 people max, but many people get them to go.

Seeing all those different flavours, my friends and I wanted to try all of them, and we ended up getting all 21 flavours and cutting them into quarters! Yes, quite small pieces, but I don’t think we would’ve been able to finish all 21 individually on our own… The 21 flavours included: Matcha, Lavender, Cappucino, Rocher, Chocolate, White Truffle, Raspberry, Passion Fruit, Black Rose, Vanilla, Guinness, Orange Blossom, Malibu, Pistachio, Earl Grey, Violette, Maple, Lemon, Pink Peppercorn, Jasmine, Rose, and Caramel. So let me tell you which ones really caught my attention, and which ones I disliked! I left with another box of 6, so let me tell you which were my top 6! In order beginning with my favourite would be: Matcha, Lavender, Rocher, Pistachio, Cappuccino, Raspberry, Chocolate. Matcha is one of my favourite all-time flavours for almost anything…but I loved how this macaron had just a hint of matcha flavour and it worked really well against the white chocolate cream. Lavender surprisingly wasn’t too flowery and had just the perfect amount of flavour so it wasn’t too strong. Now let’s go on to the ones I disliked the most. Number one would have to be white truffle. The flavour was way too pungent and although it was supposed to be a savory macaron, I didn’t like it. Black Rose also had a very weird flavour to it, and pink peppercorn had a spice that I wish wasn’t paired with a macaron. Surprisingly, Passion Fruit and Vanilla really let me down. I thought they would be very original flavours, so should be quite typical, but I found Passion Fruit to be too sour, and Vanilla to be really bland and lacking even vanilla flavour. Both beverages were also very good with a lovely hint of lavender that I loved! Overall, this is the place to be if you want to try the most talked about macarons in Vancouver!

Macarons are $2 each, or you can purchase them in boxes of 6 or 12 at a discount.

Soirette Macarons & Tea on Urbanspoon