Last night in our review of the savory delights at Epicerie Boulud we promised to post about the mostly remarkable pastries to be found there—so here we go. For the sweets and pastries, Boulud has enlisted the aid of Daniel pastry chef Dominique Ansel and his crew, and Bar Boulud and Boulud Sud pastry chef Ghaya Oliveira and her merry band of sugar spinners. Oliveira and her crew do the gelati, the gateau Basque, and the macarons; Ansel and company currently do the rest. (My guess is that their duties will evolve over time.)
Anyway, I digress. We're here to talk sweets and desserts at Epicerie Boulud. When I was confronted by the vast array of sweets being sold at Epicerie Boulud, my biggest question was: Will they be able to produce all these items at a level that Daniel Boulud would be satisfied with? The answer, with a few exceedingly minor problems, is a resounding yes.
The gelati and sorbetti and frozen yogurts are a combination of classic and original flavors. I haven't had a bad one yet, but my favorites are the strawberry balsamic and the coffee caramel (these folks really know how to combine coffee, chocolate, and caramel). I didn't taste the lichi in the raspberry-lichi, but I appreciated the tartness of the honey frozen yogurt.
In the pastry world, we've got a berry-pistachio tart that's all real pistachio flavor, beautifully made eclairs, a caramel-chocolate cake I'm still dreaming about, and more.
As a straight-up pastry and sweets shop, Epicerie Boulud is already among the best French patisseries we have in NYC. The traditional French pastries and confections are flawlessly executed, the gelati are really, really good, and the original creations are excellent as well, if in relatively short supply. I suspect that as time goes on we will see more of the inspired touches that represent Boulud and company at their best.
But even at this moment we should all be thrilled to have a world-class patisserie across the street from Lincoln Center (and just north of the Lincoln Plaza cinema and four blocks south of the Sony Lincoln Plaza). So no matter what form you like your culture in—jazz, film, opera, classical music—you've now got a place to get a seriously delicious sweet and discuss what you've just seen. The biggest problem you will have is finding a seat.