I’ve heard of this place several times – mainly how delicious their desserts are and how utterly expensive it is. As someone with a sweet tooth, I decided that I would give it a go one day. When one of my friends got me a slice of cake for my birthday from there and my entire family gathered around it and exclaimed over its beauty and taste, it cinched it: I was going to go very soon.
And so I did.
The entire place is set up with a modern design theme in mind — simple with wide open spaces (or as my friend said, a waste of space) and in shades of white, silver, and black. It was nice and right when you walk in, you know that the prices would reflect it. The girl behind the counter is dressed somewhat plainly in a pink shirt and an apron, her hair tied up. She loudly greeted us with an informal, “hello,” as we walked in. She went through the paces, but it was all business with her. Perhaps with the years the place has been open, though not too long, she’s just been jaded and dealing with delicate pastries and sweets just doesn’t do it for her anymore.
My friend and I made our selections as we walked down the length of the display case. Most of them were mousse based but all of them were beautiful. It was obvious, though, that they made a small amount for each day so if it was sold out, it was sold out.
She chose the Black Forest…
…and I chose what was labeled with “Chef Special”.
The desserts were amazing in their own ways. Although I generally love sweets, I can’t deal with desserts that are too sweet. Luckily, this place favors French-inspired desserts with the Asian characteristic of not being too sweet. The Black Forest was simple, but delicious and my friend took great pleasure in picking up the chocolate shavings. As for mine, the sheer variety of textures within the slice of cake along with the surprise hint of coffee and raspberry in the ganache was magnificent; admittedly, it took me a while to get used to the idea of a layer of thick flan in my slice.
In addition, they also sold decorative items for their cakes – a whole, round cake starts at around $35 and a rectangular one begins at around $16 – and drinks, both to sit in and to-go.
Interestingly enough, there were a number of customers who came in with friends during the hour my friend and I were there and at least four other patrons came and left with whole cakes. Seems like the price is worth it for them, though it was interesting that we take up the tray to the front counter when we’re finished.
The place was nice as a get-together place, but I’m fairly sure it’s not quite open to having loud visitors. The desserts, or at least the 2.5 I’ve tasted, were good – not too sweet and light – and their presentation was impeccable. It’s goal is to be seen as an upper crust establishment smack dab in the middle of China Town, which is a bit out of place, but it seems to make a good living for itself. I would probably come back, but definitely not as a regular.
All in all, my general impression of the place:
atmosphere – 4 out of 5
service – 3 out of 5
cleanliness – 4.5 out of 5
food – 4 out of 5
value – 3 out of 5
I suppose what mattered was my friend and I left satisfied, though slightly thirsty but too cheap to buy water. It went away though, so all was good.