Susan Johnson (more chengdu)|
We first wandered into an as yet sign-less storefront in Tongzilin, attracted by the selection of golden pastries in the window, to find a narrow cafe with a display case of sweet temptations opposite a strip of counter seating. The shop gives the impression of a split personality, one speaking French and one English; they offer, on one hand, a very continental selection of various sweet and savoury riffs on the art of puff pastry, but they also serve up an extremely American menu of fresh donuts. We had a hard time choosing which one to try at first, but the S'mores donut caught our eye. With its crown of chocolate ganache, bronzed meringue, and graham crackers, this menu favourite eats just as sticky as its namesake.
We dropped by again shortly after opening and found a full case of fresh pastries, including croissants, almond pastries, apple tarts and brioche, and the day's donut production still under way. We got a sweet, flaky Apple Tart and a strong cup of coffee and enjoyed while we watched the house-made meringue being whipped up and cream heated for ganache. The Lemon Meringue donut was filled with tart lemon curd and topped with the meringue. The Peanut Butter Cap'n Crunch had milk chocolate glaze, peanut pastry cream and was topped with peanut flavoured breakfast cereal. They have a craggy brown Apple Fritter with chunks of apple and just the right amount of glaze. They also make Cronuts but didn't have any fresh when we dropped in.
We like how they offer a few classic donuts – like the fritter, a basic glazed and a Boston cream – that would satisfy anyone homesick for comfort food, and they also do a good job on the more elaborate offerings. We would be pleased to bring a box of these donuts to any office, but given the meticulous production it's probably best to call ahead for any orders of more than a half dozen or so. Selection varies daily. Pastries 12-24RMB; donuts 10-20RMB, espresso based drinks 12-26RMB.