Tuesday, June 30

Macaron Tasting Notes

I'd been waiting for this moment . . . tasting *real* macarons from Laduree. I was just delighted when we walked right by it on the Champs-Elysees. I was the proverbial kid in a candy store or, more accurately, lady in a macaron shop. I was particularly interested in trying some of the perfumey flavors, rose, jasmine, lavender.

The line was long but moved pretty swiftly. All of a sudden it was my turn, I didn't have time to study the list of 16 flavors, I had to choose and do it quickly. So I blurted out 2 mint and went from there. I ended up with an eclectic sampling of 12, some I probably wouldn't have picked had I been of clear mind. But, oh it was so fun.

The macarons really were different from others I've tried. Granted, I really haven't eaten very many. The cookie part was very light and delicate, breaking easily. The fillings were buttery, rich and flavorful. Here's a run down of the flavors I tried:

Mint: Bright turquoise blue in color so I expected it to be strong, refreshing almost like a peppermint patty. Quite to my surprise it was what I'd call spearmint and had a soft, buttery, warm minty taste. Much better than what I was expecting. Audrey liked it too.

Chocolate: Not too sweet, not quite dark chocolate, but not the sweetness of milk either. The filling was thick, almost fudgey. Very tasty. Bryce liked it too.

Caramel with Salted Butter: This one was exceptional! The filling wasn't butter creamy, instead it was more like the best thick, caramel sauce you've ever tasted. Real caramel sauce, full of flavor. DELICIOUS. Eva approved.

Pistachio: Extremely subtle flavor, in a blind taste test I'm not sure I'd be able to detect pistachio. Almost had a coconut flavor. I would skip these next time.

Rose: So curious about this. Eating perfume. The filling was a rich butter cream with a perfectly subtle taste of rose. It wasn't perfumey at all, but definitely Rosy. Interesting. Tasty. I'll try again for sure.

Black Currant: Called Cassis/Violette in the shop. Ever so slightly tart, strong flavor in filling. Definitely a currant flavor, not blackberry or mixed berry. I enjoyed this flavor.

Lemon: Called Citron in French. I love lemon desserts so I was excited about this flavor. The filling was a butter cream with a subtle, soft lemon flavor. No tartness or tanginess at all. It was good, but I wanted a bit of zing.

Bergamot: This was one of their new spring flavors. It had a butter cream filling, with a subtle, almost absent orange essence. I love the chartreuse color of the cookie, but after tasting it, would probably skip it next time.

Next on my macaron radar is Wenge here in Luxembourg. Catherine tipped me off to this place. I walk by it often in the center but have yet to stop . . .I'm also very interested in making my own. These sound lovely.

Tell me your macaron tales - most interesting flavor, best over all - I want to know!!


Unknown said...

oh, they're beautiful! love the colors.

swissluxi said...

I absolutely looooove macarons! I might be a little bit partial, but in my opinion, the best macarons you can buy are the ones from "Spruengli" (Zurich and Zurich Airport, Switzerland)...
...they are soooooo delicious :-)!!!

Lisa said...

Wow, I never would have even imagined. All I know are the American coconut macaroons that are obviously not even close to the same thing. Great reviews and sounds like a wonderful trip. You packed alot into 2 days!

This Girl loves to Talk said...

I have never heard of them... so can't say what my fav would be.. but I love caramel flavoured everything so probably the caramel!!

they look delish and very colourful :)

Jason H said...

I have been meaning to thank you for your blog. I found it awhile ago searching for Luxembourg information. My family (part of it anyway) is from Luxembourg. Schouweiler, Luxembourg to be exact. Anyway, I have enjoyed reading your blog as it is a great way to decompress and daydream about visiting the country of part of my family.

The Macarons sound fantastic and have inspired my wife (a pastry chef by training) to experiment with some Colorado local flavors.

Keep up the wonderful blog and sharing your adventures. Merci!

katy said...

Swissluxi - not that I needed another reason to visit your beautiful country again, but now I officially have one - macarons!

Lisa - we did pack a lot into 2 days. As I was writing it I was pretty amazed myself.

Jason - I'm glad you're enjoying my blog. I haven't heard of town your family is from - I'll have to check the map. Luxembourg is a beautiful country. You must make it here someday.

Your wife is a pastry chef?? How lucky are you? I'd love updates on her Colorado inspired macarons. She would love the pastries here. They are really nothing like the ones in the U.S.

Thanks again for reading and for the great comment!

Unknown said...

Hey Chica -
I have been in love with earl grey tea lately and it has bergamont in it so I expected that to be your fave...sad to hear it wasn't. I love currant and we get ribena shipped here from Eric's family - have you tried it? it's a currant concentrate. YUM! Sad to miss you in Seattle - our next visit with Mamma Bear is in phoenix at the end of the month. Lots of love xo S

Road Trippers said...

Hey, was Molly Moons open when you were here? It's the *most* excellent ice-cream shop in Wallingford. I am in love with their Salted Caramel ice cream so I'm sure I would love that macaron, too!

The Nomadic Ewings said...

This page looks so delicious! We have friends in Paris now. I wish I could contact them and tell them to stop in and tast some of the macarons!

Sue in Trani

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