Sugar Rush: Accro Du Caramel from Lafayette
Pastry Chef Jennifer Yee's Accro du Caramel mousse cake ($6) is so light that I'm not sure what keeps it from floating off the plate and into the air. This small, beautiful pastry is all about subtle flavors and matching soft textures. But the first thing you'll notice is the technical precision: it looks like the components were cut using lasers.
The rectangular shape is perfectly uniform from end to end, and the millimeter-thick side panels of Valrhona 70% guanaja chocolate are also exact and precise. I'm certain that even people who don't pay attention to these kinds of details will appreciate the aesthetics of this dessert.
Your fork needs to pass through four different components to get through the cake and every one of them is of a similar soft texture. The salted caramel bavaroise (an anglaise-based mousse) is very light; the caramel flavor is understated not powerful or burnt-sugar-tasting. The flourless sponge cake which has to hold the pastry upright is equally light and provides no resistance at all. The medium-sweetness caramel glaze and chocolate side panels also give way with ease. And a small amount of cacao nibs on top provide a break from all the smooth textures with some crunch. I can't imagine any Accro Du Carmel or "caramel addict" wouldn't enjoy this cake.