Macarons: Laduree, Paulette, Bottega Louie, Payard, Bouchon

I’ve been a fan of macarons before the big hype even started.  Delicate, mildly sweet cakes/cookies that originated in France back in the 1800’s.  I first had them at Laduree at Champs Elysee in Paris…I fell in love! 

Laduree on Champs Elysee and Rue Lincoln in Paris, France. http://www.laduree.fr/en/maisons/monde-details

18 macaron flavors at Laduree in Paris

macarons, pastries and desserts at Laduree in Paris

At 1.50-1.70 euros a piece plus airfare to Paris, it can turn out to be an expensive food craving.  Before Laduree in New York opened in August 2011, my task was to find macarons comparable to Laduree in the Las Vegas/ Los Angeles area.  Here are some of my finds:

Paulette in Beverly Hills, California. They're now called 'lette. They have flavors such as passion fruit, lychee, earl grey, coconut and the usual flavors (vanilla, coffee, chocolate, pistachio, rose, raspberry). http://www.lettemacarons.com/macarons.html

Bottega Louie in Los Angeles, California. Probably the closest thing to Laduree in packaging and shape/size of their macarons.

Chocolates and macarons from Bottega Louie. They have flavors such as matcha (green tea) and grand cru (chocolate ganache) which are both good and the usual flavors. http://bottegalouie.com/menus/BOTTEGA_LOUIE_DESSERT.pdf

Payard in Caesar's Palace - Las Vegas, Nevada. Their macarons are shipped from elsewhere so don't expect freshly-made macarons

Bouchon Bakery inside the Venetian - Las Vegas, Nevada. They have huge macarons. http://www.bouchonbakery.com/las-vegas

Dalloyau - Paris, Tokyo, Dubai, Doha and Seoul.

Sakura and chocolate macarons from Starbucks in Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan

 For some reason, I don’t have pictures of La Provence (Los Angeles) macarons.  That gives me a good excuse to make a trip to L.A. to get some more and take pictures!  Even when the fad dies, I’d still be eating macarons.  And although macarons from these places are quite good, they’re still no LADUREE.  Sure, vanilla, chocolate and coffee macarons are good in all places I’ve tried.  But my test for good macarons is based on pistachio macarons – nobody can beat Laduree’s pistache!

Pistache/pistachio macaron from Laduree cannot be beat nor copied!

Laduree in Ginza Mitsukoshi - Tokyo, Japan

Valentine's Day edition box and macarons (pamplemousse/grapefuit with vanilla)...I'm not a fan of this flavor as it's very bitter but I still love Laduree

14 macaron flavors in Tokyo at 263 yen a piece

Laduree tote bags

Laduree handkerchiefs and scarves

My late-night dessert when I was in Tokyo: Laduree's Opera (raspberry and chocolate ganache with goldleaf on top).

I’ll be visiting New York soon.  I strategically picked a hotel that’s within walking distance from Laduree!  For now, I’ll be waiting on my cherry blossom macarons from Laduree…

Categories: Cafes/ Restaurants, Food, Japan, Laduree, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Macarons, Travel, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Food and Travel

So I was told I should start blogging about places I’ve been to and yummy treats I’ve eaten.  I would start by only backtracking travels from 2005 – any earlier than that would mean searching far and wide for old photos and memories. 

I love traveling because I get to experience and learn new things…and of course, the food!  Seeing travel pictures of my mom when she was much younger plus, Janet Jackson’s “Runaway” video inspired me to pack my suitcase and just go wherever!  The excitement each part of it brings – from planning, booking hotels and flights, reaching your destination and getting lost in the beauty that surrounds you – cannot be explained.  You savor the moment and let everything sink in.  Then you close your eyes (but not for too long) and you’re reminded “$#!t, it’s good to be alive!”  Speaking of not closing your eyes too long, I’ve realized that the only time I would ever drink coffee is when I’m traveling or recovering from my jet lag.  Sleeping and traveling don’t really go well together.  You’re in a different place, explore!  If you want to sleep, stay home.

The basic goal of mine is to guide all other curious travelers or soon-to-be-travelers as to important things to know about places that I’ve been: where to go, what to eat, how to get there (just don’t expect turn-by-turn directions), etc.  I’ll post reviews and my personal opinions about restaurants, hotels, tourist attractions and all that good stuff.  So, I hope you keep reading and looking at pictures on here – just don’t steal anything!  🙂

Categories: Food, Travel, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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