Before heading to the Top of the Rockefeller, we had some time to kill. Conveniently right across the street is the Bouchon Bakery, and we just had to try it! Having previously heard countless positive refrences to Bouchon by Thomas Keller – chef of The French Laundry with three Michelin stars, and best restaurant in the world in 2003 and 2004 – we immediately made a direct connection . Surely this was bound to be outstanding.
It was a fairly warm and humid afternoon. The sun was coming in and out between the clouds, and lucky us; it happened to be the last day to relax in their full-service Summer patio, so they had something really special for us at the end.
The menu was very limited, but we were glad to order the macaron platter, and the petites madeleines.
These sweet treats were very good, but not the fluffiest! We chose chocolate, pistachio, and the seasonal Peach. Although some people on Yelp have claimed that these are better than Ladurée, that these are the best in NYC; I can’t agree. I still find Thierry, Vancouver to be the best I’ve tried so far. On the plus side, these are very rich in flavor for such cutely sized pastries. The value? $7.50 total (which files down to $2.50 per macaron); you decide… ALSO, they have a selection of huge sized macarons inside – possibly the size of the palm of my hand.
“One of the glories of the patisserie is the macaron, a textural marvel, an extraordinary design, and an incomparably satisfying confection. This classic French pastry filled with rich buttercream has been adored for centuries. Precise baking produces a cookie that has a light and crisp outside and a soft and chewy inside. These two textures are what make the macaron such a special confection. The flavors of our macarons change with the seasons.”
- Bouchon Bakery website (http://bouchonbakery.com/macarons/)
I think the above text really does describe the perfect macaron! (Keep coming back, because we will be visiting Ladurée to compare)
These madeleines are moderate. They were very chewy and moist, but I found that a lot of the flavor came from the sugar which was generously powdered on top.
Because we weren’t satisfied yet, we headed inside to find more indulging confections – and from a wider selection.
We came back with:
Cookie Dough *parfait(?)
So this was really good. The chocolate and vanilla cream were not too heavy, and inside were more chunks of moist and highly-sweet chocolate chip cookie dough. A very tasty dessert, a good portion too.
Overall, everything is pretty and presentable. I love the look of this bakery. So what was the special surprise?
Our outside experience was completely 100% free! What a fantastic impression to leave, and especially on our first day. I have never seen something like this happen, and so I am very impressed by the generosity.
Also, just wanted to share a cool photo, so here’s one of the views of Central Park from the Top of the Rock!