Mother’s Day Gift Guide 2015

[Translate] Mother’s Day is nearing — 2 weekends away (Sunday, May 10th)! For those who are trying to decide what to give to your mom on her special day, ranging from chocolates (filled and in vogue bean-to-bars), wines, artisan beers and spirits (she might not be your typical mother and like the hard stuff), other sweets (like French macarons) and savory snacks (like cheeses and crackers): These items are not listed in any particular order, except by category. For ease of navigation, here’s the links to jump: Chocolates, Confections & Desserts Wines, Beer & Spirits Coffee Other Food Items Cookbooks..

Easter 2015 Pastries from Ladurée

[Translate] Ready for Easter? If you are wondering what beautiful, luxurious sweets to serve for Easter brunch or dinner, the famed Parisian brand Ladurée is your best bet. They are currently offering an Easter (or more appropriately, spring) themed pastry called Pâquerette (seen at the header of this post; in French, pâquerette means daisy). This delicious, sweet-tart pastry filled and soaked in passion fruit and yuzu, layered with lemon and hazelnut flavored biscuit. The abstract daisy topper is made of thin chocolate and dotted with passion fruit and yuzu curd. Of course, there must be a seasonal macaron flavor from..

Valentine’s Day & Lunar New Year Gift Guide 2015

[Translate] If you’re looking for gifts for your Valentine or a person who is celebrating Lunar New Year, here’s some ideas that might appeal to various types of people who like savory to the sweet but all in good taste (pun intended) and some items are luxe. Chocolate & Confections FIKA is a Swedish cafe and chocolate brand that opened its doors in 2006. Swedish tradition and appreciation of a coffee-centric lifestyle served as inspiration for founder and co-owner Lars Åkerlund who saw an immediate love connection between Sweden and New York. FIKA is an award winning chocolate brand as..

Bourbon Miso Pecan Brownies (Gluten Free, Butter Free)

[Translate] I love fudgy brownies. But I’ve been wondering over the years as I’ve been baking these rich, fudgy squares does it really require the half pound of butter in that batch, even if I do melt a substantial amount of chocolate? After some naval gazing and an opportunity to collaborate with Four Roses Bourbon, I had an eureka moment. I know it sounds insane to not bake with butter (and I do love my butter) but for the sake of curiosity and experimentation, you can have a fudge-y, dense brownie. Partially inspired by the macaron cookie, you can create..

New Year’s Eve Eve Dinner at Gramercy Tavern

[Translate] As long as you might have learned by now, my dear readers, Gramercy Tavern is my perennial favorite restaurant in New York City. Besides the fact it’s consistently a 1* Michelin restaurant and firmly believes in serving seasonal food philosophy and as local as possible, the food (both sweet and savory) is incredibly delicious, service was approachable yet professional, and it feels rustically refined here. We went to there for the eve of New Year’s Eve just to celebrate without the crazy hubbub of crowds. Except that was the Platonic ideal. Many diners packed in but it makes for..

Dolcezza Gelato & Coffee – It’s More Than Gelato Here (Washington, D.C.)

[Translate] Near our hotel in Dupont Circle when we were in Washington, D.C., one of our mornings for breakfast was at Dolcezza Gelato & Coffee. This particular location feels cozy like entering a friend’s living room and the local artwork some wit. (Dolcezza has five locations and a factory about 10 minutes outside of town and each location has its own look/personality.) Dolcezza’s philosophy is to support local farmers and make exquisite gelato. Dolcezza serves artisanal gelato produced in small hand-made batches every morning, using the best available ingredients: local fruits, herbs, eggs, cheese, milk and cream. Combining old-world methods..

Ladurée Tropical Themed Holiday Bûche & Macarons

[Translate] Ladurée‘s holiday theme is to transport you to a tropical, exotic place, away from the cold climes that one would associate for the high holidays. Some of their beautiful holiday pastries are the individual-sized Bûche Marie-Antoinette Rose-Framboise ($10) made of rose macaron biscuit, rose cream, raspberry jam, raspberries and lychees, and the Exotic Baba ($12), a baba soaked with rum and vanilla syrup filled with keffir lime and vanilla pastry chantilly cream and roasted pineapple. The rose-raspberry bûche is the Parisian house’s traditional flavor and it’s delicious. The Exotic Baba is striking and it does transport you to a..

Thanksgiving Sweets and Breads from Breads Bakery

[Translate] For people who wants dessert and excellent loaves bread on the Thanksgiving table Breads Bakery should be one of your options. This Thanksgiving, Breads debuted the chocolate babka pie ($35). If you had ever came across their magnificent chocolate babka, they essentially shaped this into a pie pan. I could make an excuse not to have the standard pumpkin or apple pie just because this babka is sweet and incredibly delicious. The seeded challah wreath is a great alternative to dinner or Parker rolls since it has this nuanced sweetness and the heavily seeded (poppy, pumpkin, sesame and sunflower)..

Maison Kayser Opens in the Upper West Side

[Translate] If you have been reading this site long enough, I am fans of Maison Kayser. I am excited that this amazing international, French-based patisserie and café brand finally opens in the Upper West Side. The new location is at 2161 Broadway on the corner of 76th Street. It’s dangerously close to Fairway that I would extend my grocery shopping trip and carry a larger haul with their delicious, organic, artisanal loaves of bread and pastries. This new location is beautiful that my recent Saturday morning, the morning light filtering through the large windows just cast a gorgeous shadow on..