Celebrating Food! Celebrating Life!

品悅糖 Pâtisserie La Douceur @ Taipei

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永康街 Yong Kang Street in Taipei’s 大安區Da’An District is not merely known to many as a single road but rather, a collective network of interweaving small lanes packed with interesting restaurants and cafes to visit. Its famous for many things, most notably as the birthplace of 鼎泰豐Ding Tai Fung, known for the 小籠包 xiao long bao steamed dumplings. DTF’s flagship store still helms the entrance of Yong Kong Street, often seen packed not just the restaurant within but also along the corridors, with tourists from Mainland China brought here by the tour bus loads. But we are not here to eat xiao long bao. I’m sure there’s a better place and better occasion for them. Instead, we are to visit “Pâtisserie La Douceur 品悦糖 – 法式甜品专卖” one of the pâtisseries we’d come across quite frequently over our research for the last trip. Since we would  be visiting them again in 2 weeks’ time, I thought I’d better roll out the write up for last year’s visit first!

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Pâtisserie La Douceur is not located along Yong Kang Street but instead, along 金華街 Jin Hua Street near the other somewhat quieter end of the cluster of small roads, away from the hustling and bustling of street traffic on the main Xin Yi Road. Navigating to this place may require some effort and thus not merely coincidental.

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Once inside the small shop, we were immediately overwhelmed by how packed it was. Luckily, we didn’t have to wait very long for a table as a couple was getting ready to leave as we arrived. Lucky! All female diners, young missus and tai tais enjoying a leisure afternoon tea over a chit chat session. Not counting the service staff over the counter, we were the only men in the house! Well, not surprisingly so actually, as this was not the first time we were met up with such an “imbalance” of the yin and yang. Gotten used to it already… somewhat. 🙂
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We ordered  4 petite gateaux to share and sample. First was a dark chocolate and morello cherry tart called “皇冠” which literally means “Crown”. Well, looking at how it is designed, it is not difficult to imagine why it named so.
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The composition was both simple and intriguing. A dark pate sucree aux cocoa based filled dark chocolate ganache. topped with a savarin shaped sour cherry mousse with morello compote in the cavity, it is almost like a forêt noire disguised in a tart.
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One who enjoys extremities in flavour would probably like this piece. The bitterness from the dark chocolate ganache is well balanced by the acridity from the sour cherry mousee and of course, the sour cherry slices within. And yet, the richness and velvety textures of the ganache is offset by the delicately light set mousse. Seemingly disagreeable separately, the flavours came together quite well when enjoyed on the whole.
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Tahiti 大溪地, a gigantic macaron filled with Tahitian mousseline vanilla cream and a fruits aux rouge gelée in the middle, topped with a lightly macerated blackberry. The whole piece is glued by couverture onto a graham cracker!
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Visually very very stunning, with the macaron shells very well-made. Reminds me of a similarly propped up gigantic macaron I had at Pâtisserie Kanae back in Kyoto. Afterall, how often does one get to enjoy a gigantic macaron like this? And I dare say that Pâtisserie La Douceur’s Tahiti is better!_DSC0427 s

We were initially skeptical if a vanilla mousse cream filling would be too boring and cloying. Yes its made from premium Tahitian vanilla, but still! Thankfully, the heart beared a lovely surprise in the form of a thick slab of gelatinised mixed mashed berries that helped to break any monotony and prevented this piece from ever reaching a point of having too much cream . Despite its size, we’d finished it in quick sucessions, unlike the disaster we’d had of yet another similarly large macaron we had at Paul Lafayet in Hong Kong. The latter was honestly beyond being palatable.
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For a chocolate piece, we ordered 克劳蒂 Claude, which is essentially a brownie cake disguised as an ice-cream!
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Using 72% chocolat noir from Michel Cluzel, bitterness is one of the overtones highlighted in this piece. Studded with perles craquantes chocolat before being robed by a generous layer of chocolate glacage, the appearance is quite dramatic and somewhat disturbing.
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Well, some hits and misses in this piece. the brownie was surprisingly on the dry side, given the number of components which could potentially lend it moisture, e.g. dark chocolate mousse, chocolate glace etc. But the dark chocolate mousse can hardly be faulted. There is a missing “link” in this piece as we were informed of the use of a confiture made up of rose, lychee and raspberry. But this ispahan-like combination of flavour which ought to be really prominent against dark chocolate, was unfortunately hardly noticeable. Virtually non-descript really. I was kind of looking forward to it, only to be disappointed by its absence.
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Last but not least is the elegant-looking 卡蜜拉 Carmille in alluring tones of pink and red.
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The amount of work put into the details is quite impeccable, from the neutral glacage over the redcurrants to help maintain that glossy polished finish look in the cavity, to the studding of really small silvered dragees around the circumference
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The flavours are also quite interesting. It is primarily a white chocolate and mascarpone mousse  sitting over a biscuit aux joconde aux yuzu. The centre is a mixed berry pâté, somewhat like the filling in Claude, but definitely its textures and flavours seemed to have been adjusted according to the more delicate flavour profile of Camille. Had just hoped that the combinations could have been more diversified in the overall selection of their desserts instead of the typical “mix and match” which some patisseries do.  The aroma from the yuzu joconde sponge was quite apparent. A lovely change from the usual lemon and mascarpone pairing.
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Selection of macarons available at Pâtisserie La Douceur, being highly raved by the Taiwanese bloggers. There’s white truffle, ispahan, caramel de sale, chocolate mint here…
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last three are lavender, pistachio and chocolate infused balsamico! Can’t wait to try them again this time round!
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Wall being embellished with caricatures of the same motif
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Another “refreshing” detail for qwirky me as the executive pastry chef-cum-owner of this patisserie graduated from  L’Ecole Lenotre in France, unlike many others who are old boys and girls of LCB from all over the world. Like I’d said, just qwirky me to have noticed such things. 🙂

So please pay them a visit if you happen to be in Taipei and is in the mood for something sweet and refreshing. I’m pretty sure that you would not be disappointed with what Pâtisserie La Douceur has to offer 🙂

Pâtisserie La Douceur

品悦糖 – 法式甜品专卖

No. 223 JinHua St.
website: ladouceur.com.tw
1PM – 9PM; fri/sat until 10PM

Related posts

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Paul Lafayet @ K11 Tsimshatsui Hong Kong

Japan Mar 2011 Day 4 – Pâtisserie Kanae Kyoto

13 responses

  1. This place is sooo cute and my mouth waters just imagining the taste of that dark chocolate ganache pairing with tart cherry mousse, yum yum yum!! The attention to details is amazing!

    November 6, 2012 at 2:01 pm

  2. Oops, my bad, should have come by to read this post first before commenting on FB. :)) I am so going there to try out the patisseries there!! Maybe avoid the 克劳蒂 Claude since u say the brownie is dry….+_+

    November 6, 2012 at 3:09 pm

  3. NOW i know why i didnt see the shop. we were at the cross of jin hua and yong kang, then when i turn left, it’s the sign board 223, but it was a clothes boutique shop, so i walked along that road until OK mart… SO it was suppose to be turn RIGHT …. why u no post up earlier

    November 6, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    • i would love to eat here rather than going to miniature musuem T__T

      November 6, 2012 at 4:35 pm

  4. oooo i went to the exact same patisserie this year and posted about it haha!!! 😀

    wow, i don recognise any of the cakes u posted up above. when i went, seems like they changed the whole series of cakes this yr or smth. the choc cherry one looks really really yums. might attempt to do smth like this if i can. 😉 and so jealous u got to try so many of their creations. my friend and i could only stomach two for tea…

    November 7, 2012 at 5:17 pm

    • Alan (travellingfoodies)

      Hi Michelle! I think they revamp their cake selection quite frequently! I don’t recognise any of the cakes in your photos either! looks like you had a good time cafe hopping in yong kang street! I’m gonna concentrate on two in the area, together with some beef noodle joints!

      November 15, 2012 at 4:05 pm

  5. Looks pretty delicious, I’m heading to Taiwan this coming week for a working trip, will definitely head there if I have a chance!

    November 26, 2012 at 4:51 pm

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  9. wow seems like they change their cakes very regularly! I was just there last year and besides Claude, I don’t recognize the other cakes! I did enjoy the cakes there, especially the Religieuse 🙂

    July 16, 2013 at 11:45 am

    • Alan (travellingfoodies)

      indeed… but some are staples which are available throughout the year, like their millefeuille and creme brulee… 🙂

      July 16, 2013 at 12:26 pm

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