In her opinion:
I only recently found out about the Artisan Baker. When I read about this midtown cafe that had recently opened up, I was quite intrigued. The idea of a French chef, Bruno Beaudoin using local products in a traditionally French method made me smile. On a trip last summer to Prince Edward County we stopped in at L'Auberge de France in Belleville, Ontario and sampled some French pastry before heading down into the county. Much like Chef Jean-Marc Salvagno from Avignon, France and L'Auberge de France; Chef Beaudoin from Lyon, France and the Artisan Baker capture the taste's of a French bakery or cafe in Canada.
We had enjoyed a lovely lunch in the city at Chiado, but wanted to stop in and try what the Artisan Baker had in store. We were shown to a table by Sean who would also be serving us. I ordered a coffee with cream and a glass of water. We then asked to see the dessert menu.
Sean brought over a lovely tray of desserts for us to choose from. Since we had had a three course lunch at Chiado, there wasn't much room left for a full dessert. So we opted to get one dessert for the three of us to share and since little man wanted the berries from the beautiful berry cream puff, that's what we got.
Sean brought over the berry cream puff and all three of us dug in. I tweeted that one single bite had transported me 6000 kilometers to Paris, France and that's exactly what this pastry tasted like. It was just like the pastries we had enjoyed during our trip to Paris. These were excellent.
We also picked three other pastries to bring home. We got an almond croissant, a chocolate eclair and a mille-feuille. The almond croissant was excellent. The cream filling was very delicate and delectable. The pastry itself was gorgeous. It was perfect croissant pastry.
The chocolate eclair consisted of excellent choux pastry filled with delicious chocolate custard. It was very good.
The mille-feuille had a lot to live up to...afterall, mille-feuille has been my favourite pastry since I was a little kid...I love puff pastry. This pastry was very good. The puff pastry itself was excellent, the icing absolutely delicious and the pastry cream was soft and delectable.
The Artisan Baker is a great spot in midtown Toronto which serves breakfast, lunch, dinner or just coffee and dessert. I hope to return for dinner soon.
In his opinion:
Every chance that I get to sample a little bit of France in Canada, I jump at the opportunity. This is because I love French cuisine and also because French chefs tend to love their food more than their families, possessions and even "La belle Pais", France itself.
French chefs have the reputation of being extremely dedicated to their craft. Most want to take their passion everywhere including school cafeterias in France that boast classically trained chefs. Unfortunately. this was the wrong day for us to be visiting this great establishment as we had very little room for food after finishing a 3 course meal at Chiado.
We decided to split 1 dessert and take a couple more home. There was never any guarantees that the extra "to go" desserts would make the hour drive home as it is indeed hard to know you have French pastries in the car and not eat them.
I ordered an iced Latte that was very well done, perfectly balanced and extremely tasty. Refreshing also taking in consideration the hot temperature outside but emphasis on the taste above it all.
We were shown a plank with the available desserts and ended up picking the Berry Cream Puff. The pastry we shared was absolutely delicious. The puff pastry itself was so soft and fresh and worked very well with the berries and chantilly cream.
The Artisan Baker is extremely nice and inviting with a plethora of sweets and great food as well.
For some amazing French pastries or equally good French food (or both), check out the Artisan Baker, well worth the visit!