Since I long for the days that I can return to Paris, I always try to recreate a Parisian style experience when I am on vacation. Surprisingly, everywhere you go you can guarantee that you’ll be able to find a taste of Paris whether that be in the form of a bakery or a fine dining restaurant.
Upon my recent visit to NY, I knew that the best way to recreate my Parisian experience would be to visit the world-famous Ladurée in their newest location in SoHo. The Parisian confection brand is based in Paris and can be found along the Champs Élysées and Rue Bonaparte. As patrons walk through the doors, they are transported to a luxurious tea parlor complete with ornate adornments. Tapestry lines the walls with gold trimmings scattered throughout the space. As one looks up, even the ceiling is adorned in rich linings of gold. Of course, it wouldn’t be fair, if only Paris had the opportunity to bask in Ladurée’s Parisian Glory.
The SoHo location does a marvelous job of recreating the Parisian experience in the chic neighborhood of SoHo. As one is driving down W. Broadway, Ladurée can’t be missed as the outside is painted a bright pastel green with Ladurée spelled out in gold lettering. As soon as I walked in, I soon understood why Ladurée is the go-to spot for sweet Parisian delights.
A rainbow of macarons in some of the most obscure colors lined the glass cases. Gorgeous pastries such as the famed center Ispahan and St. Honoré Rose Framboise were front and center enticing anyone with a sweet tooth. It was as if I was transported to a pastry heaven. As one walks into each artfully decorated tea room, each room is different from the next creating an elegant and intriguing vibe.
Since it was a beautiful day in SoHo, my mother and I decided to begin our Parisian brunch experience outside in the Secret Garden. Surrounded by chairs in white and green plant fixtures, the setting is absolutely perfect for a day in the sun. If the weather is nice, I can’t see why you wouldn’t want to have a calm and relaxing meal on the terrace.
To begin, I ordered a pot of tea. I tried a flavor unique to Ladurée and I selected the Marie Antoinette. It was a mix of black tea from china with rose petal, citrus, and honey. The floral elements added a nice touch to our nature themed meal. A nice smooth tea, that even a non-tea lover wouldn’t dare to add a packet of sugar.
For our main meal, my Mother and I both order the Omelette Ladurée with a side of fruit. This Omelette comprised of mushrooms, cheese, ham, tomatoes, onions, fresh cream and fine herbs. The dish was incredibly delicious with a nice blend of ingredients. However, the Omelette had a peculiar ability to not feel heavy on my stomach. Typically with eggs, I know once I order an Omelette I won’t have room for much else. But with Ladurée’s not only did it give me a feeling of satisfaction, I still had room for their famed dessert.
While known for their impeccable selection of macarons I have heard that you haven’t had a real macaron until you’ve had one from Ladurée. I couldn’t just rely on the testimony’s of everyone else. I knew I had to test out this theory for myself. Ladurée features many flavors of macarons available year-round, but I wanted to take a dip on the adventurous side or order from the limited edition menu. I ordered 5 macaron flavors including the Marie Antoinette, The Early Grey, and my favorite of the bunch the Pucci. And by Pucci I was literally eating a designer macaron. This is because this macaron was designed in collaboration with designer Emilio Pucci. Everyone was right, you haven’t had a real macaron until you take a bite out of one of Ladurées. It was incredibly smooth in texture while oozing just the right amount of flavor. Of the 5 I tasted, there wasn’t one flavor that my palate didn’t find pleasing.
Pour la finale of my meal, I ordered the much raved about St. Honoré Rose Framboise. This dish comprised of puff pastry, choux pastry, light rose petal cream, raspberry compote, fresh raspberries and rose water whipped cream. If your mouth begins to water just reading that, I can confirm your feelings are warranted. This dish was so scrumptious, I’m pretty sure I finished it in less than one minute. One bite after the other, I just couldn’t stop eating. This is one of Ladurées most famous desserts. With that being said, I highly recommend trying out this dish for yourself.
Based on my wonderful Parisian brunch, I’ll definitely make my way back to Ladurée next time I’m in SoHo.