Ooo la la: La Gourmandine, Lawrenceville
Maybe all I ate today was French pastries. Maybe that was the best decision ever.
I tried out the new French bakery on Butler Street – La Gourmandine Bakery and Pastry Shop – this morning. I usually like to visit places a couple of times before giving a seal of approval, but this is a special case of awesome. Before even stepping foot through the door, I was charmed on the sidewalk. Lovely bistro chairs and tables make for a warm entrance along with the hand drawn chalk sign. I was smitten already.
At the counter, be prepared for tough decisions; everything looks good and French. Since I like both good and French pastries, I knew I wasn’t leaving this place with only one snack. So I bought three things: a pain au chocolat, 2 eclairs au chocolat (one for a friend – I swear!), and a tartalette aux fraises. I ate the chocolate croissant before I had a chance to snap its photo. But, holy crap, it was tasty. The flaky croissant melted in my mouth, and the chocolate was just the right consistency.
It took all of 20 minutes before I decided to eat the chocolate eclair. Much to my delight, it had a chocolate custard on the inside and the pastry was fresh and airy. After devouring this treat, my hands were covered in icing and custard, but the mess was worth it.
Being a lady, I waited at least an hour before eating the last confection: the strawberry tart. This wonder had all the workings of something I wouldn’t like: fruit on dessert-like things (totally my pet peeve), blueberries (my least favorite of all fruits), and no chocolate in sight. It had looked so lovely in the case, though, that I had to buy it. I was expecting to not enjoy it but, SURPRISE!, I totally did. Pastry cream made an appearance under the fruit, major score, and the tart was just right.
As you can see, I enjoyed my first visit. C’est magnifique!