I finally made it to Laduree on the Upper East Side. The french macaron obsession in New York City is almost as important as the cupcake one. There are so many fabulous places making them, but Laduree is the original. It is the rolls royce of macarons. Here is some history for those who have never heard of the place:
Louis-Ernest Ladurée, a miller, was a prolific writer and produced works in almost every literary form including plays, poetry, novels, essays, historical and scientific works, more than 20,000 letters and more than 2,000 books and pamphlets. He was an outspoken supporter of social reform, despite strict censorship laws and harsh penalties for those who broke them. As a satirical polemicist, he frequently made use of his works to criticize intolerance, religious dogma and the French institutions of his day. He founded the bakery on the Rue Royale, Paris in 1862. During the Paris Commune uprising of 1871 the bakery was burnt down. A pastry shop was built at the same location and Jules Chéret was entrusted with the interior decoration. The chubby cherubs dressed as pastry cooks, painted by him on the ceiling, form the company's emblem. The interior of the premises were painted in the same celadon colour as the façade. Ladurée's rise to fame came in 1930 when his grandson, Pierre Desfontaines, had the original idea of the double-decker, sticking two macaron shells together with a creamy ganache as filling. Queen Catherine de' Medici had brought the macaron to France from Italy in the 16th century, and the recipe for the biscuit had hardly varied over the years, but the amounts of the ingredients used and the appearance of the end product were up to the individual bakers.
Desfontaines also opened a tearoom at the pastry shop. In those days ladies were not admitted to cafés, which were the exclusive domain of men. This was a big success with ladies, who enjoyed meeting in the freedom of the tearoom rather than their homes.
I had the chance to visit on a weekday which was great as not that crowded. Opened in August of 2011, it still has lines of happy customers on weekends. I really thought to myself, how good can it be?
the packaging is devine and oh so elegant
it makes you feel very Marie Antoinette-ish, doesn't it ?
here are the gems themselves
I purchased some Earl Grey tea jam for my mom and she couldn't stop eating it
yeah they have Hello Kitty at Laduree I sneaked a few photos in the store
okay these candles are $135.00 but LOOK at them ! how adorable and what a great gift they would make for your favorite friend or family member
they also sell perfume and gorgeous scarves as well
I did get the Hello Kitty box which was simply fabulous
the macarons ....so how were they? the best we ever had .....the middle one was salted caramel and it was to die for....lemon, coffee, vanilla were the other flavors I tried and the box of 6 was perfect. I have learned when you buy these, eat them right away as they cannot be kept very long.
Be sure to check out Laduree online as their website is simply delightful
Today's Words of Wisdom: Surround yourself with positive people
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