French Made Baking

Saw this place and got attracted by the tower of macarons by the window.

It is very pretty, the bakery is very cute and full of fresh bakery smell. I went there to buy a box of macarons for Mother’s Day dessert. Since I was preparing a Mother’s Day dinner at home, so I got these desserts to go.

Earl Grey Ganache Tart – just by the name of it, I started drooling. Sounds so yummy! It was yummy but I really just couldn’t taste any Earl Grey at all. Maybe the chocolate ganache was too strong, which covered the light Earl Grey flavour. But tart crust is very good with soft and smooth chocolate ganache.

This is lemon meringue tart with rosewater. Very beautiful presentation and good lemon filling without being too sour but where is the rosewater? Once again I didn’t taste much difference than an original lemon meringue tart.

Since I got them to go and I got so many I really couldn’t tell what’s what by the time I ate them. 😛 The flavours include: Jasmine white chocolate ganache, Passion fruit, Pistachio, Litchi/Rose, Earl Grey, Raspberry and Yuzu.

Okay there are few distinctive ones that I can tell such as Pistachio. Mint with dark chocolate ganache? Raspberry – quite good. Yuzu sort of taste like butterscotch. Or it was butterscotch… I tasted the Litchi/Rose a lot, it was actually the best one that I enjoyed. (Or maybe I can actually taste what it is) Overall the taste of the macarons were a little sweet but okay if you have them with tea or coffee, texture were also very good.

But here is the horror, my brother got a piece of plastic object in one of the Yuzu. At first he thought it was a nail so all of us almost threw up. But after a closer look it was a piece of hard plastic (we assume it’s from some sort of container or packing). This scared me a bit, I don’t know if I will ever go back.

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Thierry Patisserie

If you live in Vancouver, I am sure you have would heard of this new chocolate/pastry cafe of the town. I was first attracted by their front door. Tall dark wood doors with little circle windows, you just couldn’t miss it. A pastry cafe located in downtown will have to live up to expectations, and it surely did. The cafe is beautiful inside, carefully matching wood from the doors to the furnitures.

I know they are quite famous for their macaroons, so I decided to try it out. I went there quite late and most of their macaroons are sold out, so from the remaining I picked passionfruit and mocha. Like most macaroons they were a bit sweeter for my tasting, and I really couldn’t taste the passion fruit. But just looking at macaroons already makes my day that much happier. :”] Compared to other macaroons I have tried in the past, this is indeed not as sweet.

When it comes to cake, I just need coffee or tea. This iced mocha was delicious! Although it was a cold day but still made this coffee very satisfying. It wasn’t too sweet, which I truly liked. They also had an assortment of tea, which my friend ordered.

The tiramisu was very standard, nothing special to it but it wasn’t bad. But I love the dark chocolate pieces on the outside instead of ladys’ fingers. It didn’t make the cake sweeter but added extra texture. :9

If I recall properly this is the chocolate trio, which has three different layers of chocolate mousse. I just couldn’t get enough of mousse, I am (must admit) in love in mousse texture cakes.  I love this trio, was very smooth and rich. Then I also ordered a lime mousse to try it out. In comparison to the chocolate trio, the lime mousse is quite sour but was refreshing. If you are not into sour cakes then this might not be the choice for you.

All the cakes are beautiful and the decor totally adds to the atmosphere. This bakery place opens til late and for sure will become one of the most popular late night dessert places in downtown Vancouver.

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Giovane Wine Bar

Inside Fairmount Pacific Rim, a verily quite wine bar inside a beautiful hotel by the water. I heard lots of goods about their dessert so I decided that I must go try it out. But of course while I was there I also order other savoury items to try:

Truffled Mushroom & Melted Leek Crostini – Maybe I just love truffle (got this infection from a truffle lover friend of mine) This was yummy, with the very well toasted crunchy crostini.

Then there are the pizzas: Capricciosa and Margheritta

Capricciosa tastes great with the hard boil eggs and artichoke.

Margheritta is average but the fresh basil saved it. 🙂

Both of the pizza crust was just right, not too thin or too thick and not over baked. I loved using it with the extra truffle mushroom dip. :9

Last but not least, the reason why I was there did not disappoint me. My friend told me to try out their Peanut Butter Hedgehog and a black forest on the side. Oh the Hedgehog was so delicious! It was rich of peanut butter with chocolate sponge and ganache and small bits of peanuts, I am drooling just thinking about it again. This little dessert totally made my trip worth. The black forest surprised me, I was trying to figure out what are the red powder. But the chocolate mousse and almond sponge made a perfect couple! There are also bits of  almond that gave the dessert so much more texture. I definitely want to try out their other desserts as well during their bakery hours. 🙂

Their official website is here.

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WE Coffee

I noticed this place because of a deal website that was featuring them and later one of my friend recommended this place for me so I decided to try it out on a Sunday night. I went after a dinner so I ordered one regular strawberry waffle and a pot of African Rooibos to share between a friend and I.

The decor is modern with only black, white, metal and lots of mirrors which made this small place seems very large and spacious. I am pretty sure the whole place was refurnished and went under renovation because all the furnitures were really new and clean.

The regular portion is a very large portion, almost like a meal size. The waffles were quite packed down therefore sort of gives this heavy cake feeling to the waffles, they were served with fresh strawberries, ice cream and condensed milk by this very adorable and polite server who was very attentive and kept making sure we have hot water in our tea.

African Roobios

And I especially like their tea cups they serve with, I noticed every table has their own matching tea sets in the same color scheme. They look vintage to me. 🙂 But I just love how they were actually one set.

WE Coffee

Strawberry Icecream Waffle

Visit their Facebook website here.

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LIFT

Heard lots about their beautiful scenic view so I decided to pay a visit there during my birthday. I guess I had it on an unlucky day, it was pouring rain therefore I was unable to see any beautiful view. Service was sort of slow, we had to wait for a while before we actually got our menu and also waited for quite a bit for our food to arrive.

We have ordered seared scallops and fresh oyster to start. They were fresh but that is pretty much I can say about them. I suppose if the seafood is fresh you can’t really go wrong. But it was really nothing special for that price range, almost to a point not worth it. But I have to say the dishes have beautiful presentations.

Fresh Oyster

Seared Scallops

Then it comes to our entrees, crab cakes and swordfish. These ones were on the dry side (maybe I just like my food with a little bit more juice). The crab cakes were really crispy but there wasn’t enough sauce. 😦 Since the crab cake was deep fried a bit so it made it really dry (even the inside). The sword fish was very very chewy and again was sort of tasteless and not enough sauce to finish the whole dish. We couldn’t really finish our food since they were so dry (I usually try my best to finish my food).

Crab Cake

Swordfish

Overall I wouldn’t recommend this restaurant (but I heard recently that they had a menu change maybe it’ll be different?!) for this price range of food. I didn’t try out any dessert because nothing excited me on the menu.

Official website here.

Lift Bar Grill View on Urbanspoon

Yi-Xin Noodle House 一心麵典

This family run Taiwanese beef noodle house has always been my faouvrite for beef noodle. Their classic beef noodle always sold out by 8pm at night. About an year ago they started to do small desserts and I never got the time to go visit during their tea time (2-5pm). So this other night after having their beef noodle I decided to try out one of their dessert – pudding cake.

With a layer of traditional Taiwanese pudding on top of a pound cake, was so yummy!! The sweet soft pudding combined with the not so sweet pound cake made it a very good combination. Along with some fresh seasonal fruits made the whole cake just the perfect sweetness. I also had it with this honey tea which I didn’t take a photo of but was very good combination. I must go visit again and try out other dessert and tea during their tea hours!!

Location: 4611 Kingsway Ave Burnaby

Hours: (I cannot remember this correctly since they’ve changed it around)

Monday, Sunday Closed

Tues – Sat 11-3, 5-8:30 (3-5 only dessert)

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Faubourg Afternoon Tea

This is the second time I visit, because I saw they server afternoon tea so I thought I would give it a try.

Small Section for Afternoon Tea

Menu

I went with a friend this time around 4pm, we ordered the pink afternoon tea sets and I always enjoy afternoon tea because I can try out many different types at once. For tea we got Marco Polo and Vert Provence, I loved the Marco Polo – it is a fruity black tea and tastes great with or without milk.

Purple Tea Set

Marco Polo Tea

The tea set included the following:

The Savoury

Cucumber, roast beef. coriander cream – like the sesames on the bun, but it is a little dry

Smoked salmon and wasabi cream – wasabi and salmon just cannot go wrong

Chicken, apple. country ranch dressing – apple added crunch and freshness to the richness

Scones served with cream and jam – simple apricot jam

Raspberry Soufflé – tastes more like blueberry to me

Raspberry Souffle

Mini Lemon Tart – tried this before and still like it lots

Mini Lemon Tart

Mini  Opéra – I had this at Ganache before, Ganache is better 🙂

Mini Opera

Chocolate mousse – this would is really nothing special

Chocolate Mousse

Parfait – plain yogurt with fresh fruit

Yogurt Parfait

Pastry chef’s suggestion: Apicot Cinnamon Brownie? (brownie without the chocolate)

Cinnamon Apricot Brownie

If you have a smaller appetite I would suggest going early (2pm) for the purple afternoon tea where you can choose 2 items from each category. The decor and environment is great for afternoon tea, though not all items were outstanding. If I go back next time it would be tea with friend or maybe trying out their bistro menu. :9

More info: http://www.faubourg.com/Afternoon-Tea

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Faubourg

Official Website: http://www.faubourg.com/

Went online to Urbanspoon trying to find more dessert places, then I came across of Faubourg. Then it stroke me that I had passed by it many times when doing to Adonia and Secret Garden Tea. So one day I decided to pop by while I was doing my dessert hop.

French fine pastry with beautiful decor, though it is quite busy with energetic ambiance but it is still a great place to have an afternoon snack. Few of the staff had heavy French accents, which adds to the personality of this pastry shop.

I order individual pieces to have. Ordered the lemon tart, raspberry pistachio mille feuilles, latte, cappuccino and these little pastry puffs on the side.

The lemon tart is decorated with these large clumps of sugar (for the first view I thought it was salt :P). The tart is good and not too tardy, the inside filling has two layers – a while sweet foamy texture white center and the concentrated lemon tart/jello type outside. The texture was great from spongy to soft to crunchy, the sour of the lemon balanced well with the sweet foamy center. And the clumps of sugar on the side was great with the lemon as well.

Then mille feuilles was perfectly layered (at least to me), though it could be a messy dessert but the thin crispy layers are finely layered with raspberry and pistachio. I personally didn’t really like the pistachio flavour but enjoyed the texture of the pastry layers, it wasn’t soft and still very crispy. I thoroughly enjoy this dessert.

The little puffs were a sweet little delight, it is basically a puff with their clump sugar which is great! I like the feeling of eating this soft little puff. 🙂

Coffee were not bad, though I am not into coffee so I couldn’t say much.

Oh there is afternoon tea!! I shall visit again some other time. 😀

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Chez Meme Baguette Bistro

It is a very French baguette bistro located on 4016 Hastings Street in the Burnaby north area, the staff are all French (I believe) and they are attentive. I have been there before and tried out the steak baguette, strawberry french toast and the onion soup (I like the onion soup, though it is quite salty).

This time I went over for a quick breakfast with a friend and ordered a special local raspberry French toast with a decaf cappuccino. The raspberry were really fresh and lots of whip cream (I’m not sure but I think the whip cream are from a can), but the toast were really good. They are very soft and not mushy.My friend ordered a chicken and ham sandwich with carrot soup. The soup wasn’t served hot hot (maybe I just like soup really hot) but was very creamy with some special spices (which I cannot make out what it is), the baguette is not as moist as the steak one from time. Tastes great with the horseradish provided. I would recommend trying out the steak baguette if you’re a moist meat type of person. 🙂

They are quite busy and do not take reservation on the weekend, but during the weekday I would still recommend a call before you head over to avoid the wait. They are only open 9-4 M-F and every 2nd Saturday of the month as I remember, but sure is a neighbourhood gem. :9

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Mink Chocolates

Was going to visit this place a while back with a friend, but we ended up cancelling the date and I ventured it myself with my boyfriend. The location I visited is in Downtown Hastings and Hornby St, right beside an small open park. When I enter the beautifully modern cafe, all I notice was chocolate. The brown color paint on the wall, the rich chocolate fragrance and small little chocolates on the display shelves. All of a sudden I felt like a little girl entering a candy shop. 🙂

We ordered a hot 70% dark hot chocolate, dark chocolate mocha, Belgian monkey waffle and this dessert that I cannot recall its name.

The dark hot chocolate and dark chocolate mocha was delicious. It is what true hot chocolate is meant to be, since I ordered dark chocolate wasn’t too sweet but at the same time very rich so it was perfect!! The waffle and the dessert was quite sweet (I’m a sweet tooth myself :P) served in a shiny  silver tray.

If you are not into sweets, this is probably not the place for you. But if you are like me who loves desserts and sweet then you will like this.

Visit their website.

Mink Chocolates (W Hastings) on Urbanspoon