Ah. The Cronut. After reading numerous reports and an article in the Guardian about Dominque Ansel, the chef who created the original Cronut, I wanted to experience the Cronut for myself. Unfortunately, a trip to New York is currently out of the question. But, I heard that Drip Cafe in Taipei also has its own version of the Cronut, and that was certainly a feasible option. Or so I thought. Drip Cafe is located across from the new Eslite Songyan branch. It’s nestled in an apartment building, in one of the older neighborhoods of Taipei.
住在台灣最大的享受之一應該就是吃的選擇很多～ 連國外現在在紅的 Cronut 現在在台北也可以嘗試的到！
但是如果要吃到Drip Cafe 的 Cronut 的話 就真的要具備耐心～因為不是要在現場等兩個多小時， 或是就是要 plan ahead 訂位。
One random afternoon, I happened to be in the neighborhood and I stopped by thinking I could grab a Cronut spontaneously. Oh no. I was wrong.
The waitress told me there was a two hour wait. And, I had to wait nearby for them to call my number. Needless to say, I didn’t want a Cronut that badly, at that particular moment. So I decided to make a reservation for a later date. The earliest available date was three weeks later. Yup. Three weeks!
Three anxious weeks later, I arrive back at Drip Cafe. Ready for the Cronut！
Before I get to the Cronut, I have to mention, Drip Cafe has that one of the best tasting fruit teas I’ve had in a long time! The tea was infused with a hearty serving of fruit, which included passionfruit, kiwi, apple, and maybe there was a piece of pineapple in there, but I’m not too sure. The glass cup came with two slices of lime, and that added a refreshing tartness to the tea.
Another part that really intrigued me was the wooden tray. It was the perfect size for a both the one-serving tea pot and glass cup.
There was also this indent on one side of the tray. I wondered if the indent served any other intentional purpose, rather than just aesthetics. But when I pulled the tray towards me, from across the table, I found out that indent is a perfect place to rest your thumb, and you can get a better grip on the tray that way. This is a detail that I would look for in any future wooden tray purchases.
The interior of Drip Cafe is pleasant. The chairs are comfortable, the lamps give off a warm glow. On one side of the store, there is a glass wall where you can see some of the pastries being assembled.
However, to be honest, the atmosphere in Drip Cafe felt a little frenzied. I could sense people wanting to try everything on the menu, and then calculating in their brains: Can I eat all of this in 90 minutes? Oh, but wait, I’ve been on standby for two hours, of course I can!!! And once the plate arrives, there is a frenzy of picture snapping, and then people just dive in. The somewhat hectic atmosphere was also perpetuated by the waitress, who kept coming up to the tables at regular intervals. She would march purposely up to your table, stare intently at your plate, and march back to the front counter. Seriously. No words were exchanged, but I felt that she was thinking, “hmm… two more bites to go, that’s like 10 minutes.”
The tables were so close together, you felt like you were a part of your neighbor’s conversation. For example, from my neighbor on the right, I heard word for word the painful details of a very nasty breakup. I’ll spare everyone the grisly details here, since this is a happy food/desserts/cooking blog. Oh, but no, since I’ve baited your interest, I’ll put it in dessert metaphors. Basically, the two of them together was a recipe for disaster (excuse the pun) If the relationship was likened to a cake, they were too lazy to go out and get the right ingredients. The cake turned out to be a disaster, and the guy blamed the girl for everything. Then he took the cake and threw it off Taipei 101 and ran off to Timbuktu. (well, in my story he did, but I’m sure he’s still lurking the streets of Taipei). The girl is left with the messy kitchen, and is still trying to overcome the indignity of baking a bad cake. Anyway, she was so absorbed in telling her story, that she all but ignored ignored the beautiful Cronut sitting right in front of her.
Luckily for me, all these years of having to work and concentrate (and be nice!) in a busy, noisy environment have prepared me for a moment like this. So, I was able to enjoy my Cronut largely undistracted.
First of all, one of the most alluring parts of the Cronut is the aroma. It’s this comforting, sugary, buttery smell that wafts up towards you as you reach for the knife. Or your camera.
Sorry for the lopsided photos. But after a 3 weeks of anticipation, I was really eager to dive right in!
The layers are buttery and crisp, the custard adds just the right touch of sweetness and moisture to the dessert. It was served with a small jug of sweetened evaporated milk, but I didn’t pour it over my Cronut because it seemed to be sweet enough, with the custard and the powdered sugar on top.
Cronut 是兩個 pastry 的合體~ croissant + doughnut. 因為是用炸的， 所以口感很酥脆。 在加上 custard 真是一個非常 rich 的甜點。
在享受 Cronut 的過程， 突然想到我手邊有一個 “香烤草莓”冰淇淋 (Roasted Strawberry Ice Cream) 食譜還等著要試。當下決定週末一定要把最近比較少用的冰淇淋機挖出來！
The scoop of strawberry ice cream served with the Cronut was studded with fresh strawberries (argh! With the stems attached!) Compared with the ingenuity of the Cronut, it was a fairly run-of-the-mill ordinary strawberry ice cream, interrupted by the occasional ice chip. Of course, I won’t be trying to replicate something like the Cronut in my own kitchen. I’m sure the complexity and skills involved is just way too over my head, and requires more patience than I probably possess. Instead, I felt that the accompanying strawberry ice cream could be tweaked just a bit, to make the Cronut even more fabulous than it already is.
So, a few days later, with the Cronut still on my mind, I whipped up a batch of Roasted Strawberry Ice Cream.
The full details and the recipes can be found here, in a separate blog entry, but I’ll include just a glimpse now to whet your appetites.
I think the simple, light strawberry flavor, with a hint of lemon would complement the richness of the Cronut nicely.
自己做出來的冰淇淋有淡淡的草莓味～我覺得應該跟 Cronut 蠻搭配的！
台北市信義區忠孝東路四段553巷26號 | Zhongxiao East Road, Section 4, Lane 553, No.26, Xinyi District, Taipei | Phone: 02 2764 8181