Sunday, September 7, 2008

Things I Love About New York: Parisian Sweets

This week was filled with unexpected Parisian treats, to my delight. Earlier in the week, I met a friend, let's call him Freelancing Fella, at Georgia's Bake Shop on Broadway between 89th and 90th and had a wonderful "Parisian" breakfast of cappuccino and a cheese danish. Freelancing Fella had a chocolate brioche, which looked so amazing I'll definitely have to go back and try it. Wish I took pictures!

The restaurant has outdoor seating in the summer (and a nice amount of seating inside) and has a great neighborhood feel--appropriately Parisian, I guess. Apparently, Tuesday was the first day back to school for some schools, b/c there were a bunch of UWS housewives buzzing about their chickadees.
Saturday, Miss Fashion and I indulged our sweet tooths...first with brunch at Sarabeth's at the Whitney. We had no wait! Can you believe it? The full Sarabeth's menu for no wait! Those of you who have tried the other two locations of Sarabeth's know how long the wait is for brunch--at least an hour on weekends. But here, you just tell the museum guards that you're going to the restaurant and they let you down the stairs to where the restaurant is located, and b/c it's sort of "hidden" in the basement of the museum, it's managed to fly under the radar of the brunch hordes.Miss Fashion had the pumpkin waffles b/c she goes weak in the knees for anything pumpkin: And I had their famous lemon ricotta pancakes--so lemony, moist and delicious!After some shopping on Madison Avenue, we escaped the rain by going to the UES location of Le Maison du Chocolate. This location, unlike the Rock Center location, has a large cafe space in the back. Check out the selection. I hear their macarons are shipped fresh from Paris:Hot chocolate hit the spot during the storm...Miss Fashion had her favorite, the marzipan & pistachio log, which she seemed to savor forkful by forkful. Between bites, she kept mumbling something about the amazing texture : )...and how thrilled was I with my caramel macaron with chocolate filling. It was perfectly chewy and moist in the middle - so good!:Then, today, on the way home from a class at the Institute of Culinary Education, I finally stopped into Madeleine Patisserie on 23rd between 6th and 7th Ave, whose macaron fame earned them a place on my "must visit" list a while back. Walking in, I was curious --how would their macarons stack up against the one I had the day before at Le Maison? They did not disappoint! I brought home their Fleur del sel Caramel, Chocolate, Lavender and Rose flavors for City Guy and I. Here are some pictures of their dozens of macaron flavors. So good!!! Exactly what I look for in a macaron--fresh, crisp meringue on outside, not crumbly, then chewy with a good spread of moist ganache. For $2 a piece, they're cheaper than the Le Maison ones and bigger too. Even better than the macarons at Financier, I think. Aren't they pretty? So let's just say I've been a little obsessed with macarons since my trip to Laduree in Paris. But now that I have Madeleine & Le Maison, I pine no more! Signing off now...still on a sugar high...

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