This Saint-Honoré proposed by La Pâtisserie des Rêves (Philippe Conticini) could be surprising at first sight. It clearly differs from the classical version of this cake by its aesthetics and its construction. Its asymmetrical architecture is actually a balanced overlaying of choux, éclairs and hard caramel. A beautiful cream generously laying on its surface clearly gives a silky and rich feel to this dessert. There’s also a remarkable effort in the packaging of the product, and that will probably please picky buyers while perfectly corresponding to the dreamy image evoked by the name of the pastry shop.
The three little choux lying on the cake are each covered with hard caramel and filled with vanilla pastry cream. They are secured with some caramel to one of the two éclairs underneath them, also filled with this cream. The éclairs are fixed with the same caramel on a caramelized reversed puff pastry. Half of the surface of the cake is covered with vanilla mascarpone cream.
The Saint-Honoré by La Pâtisserie des Rêves has a length of 120 mm and a witdth of 52 mm with a thickness of 53 mm. The specimen we purchased weighs 186 grams and costs 6.90 euros.
Caramel topping on the choux is of a fairly clear blond color with a mild flavor. Its thickness is reasonable, but it seems too rigid compared to the choux dough. It would be better if it could to easily crack under the simple effect of the tongue pushing it against the palate. Mascarpone cream on the surface is quite thick. With time it tends to create a kind of thin skin on its surface that can crack slightly at the corners. This did not seem to be a problem that affected the taste. As expected the choux pastry was probably filled in advance, that made it a little bit softer than we would’ve liked but it was still intact. Overall the choux and the éclairs were rather soft despite the little cracker layer on the surface of the the éclairs, and the vanilla flavor in the cream was pleasantly pronounced. This softness is balanced with the airy and crispy reversed puff pastry that breaks easily without tamping down in the mouth, and with the presence of caramel through different layers of the cake.
This Saint-Honoré by La Pâtisserie des Rêves manages a delicate balance between shapes, flavors and textures. At first sight, it’s a cake with a fairly sophisticated presentation, but the flavors in it are rather classical which is of good taste in order to avoid too much artificiality. It is both surprising and comforting. It remains delicious and accessible, rich and simple at the same time. It can be easily recommended to lovers of pure and intense flavors that are also sensitive to some originality in the presentation.
Rating: 4/5 Excellent
93 rue du Bac, 75007 Paris, France