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Looking for an AWESOME pastry shop

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I am looking for a bakery/pastry shop that sells high quality, individual desserts such as what they would serve to you in a very expensive restaurant. There are so many places that sell individual mousse cakes, cannolis, etc, but they always look better than they taste. Anybody have any ideas?

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  1. Dessert Trends on Harbord or Rahier on Bayview.

    1 Reply
    1. re: TorontoJo

      I second Rahier, I think I read on these boards not too long ago there is another great spot on that strip too, but I forget the name...

    2. Senses, Dessert Trends. Some of The Drake baked goods are stellar.

      2 Replies
      1. re: deelicious

        I second Senses. I love everything there.

        1. re: pinkprimp

          Earlier this year, I ate the worst croissant of my life at senses.

      2. The Queen of Tarts on Roncesvalles makes beautiful tarts and pies...

        1 Reply
        1. re: orbitgirl

          beautiful-yes, delicious-no, pricey-yes, worth it-no

        2. I LOVE Queen of Tarts - they spare nothing in their quest for perfection in their ingredients... yum!

          You did ask about "pastry", and I cannot think of this place without thinking specifically about pastry. You cannot think about this category without thinking about Pain Perdu on St. Clair West... (736 St. Clair West) the French owners are pastry artisans who use old-world pastry methods. Excellent quiches and food as well.

          7 Replies
          1. re: Moimoi

            Moimoi - what would you recommend? I have only tried their little novelty cookies (that I can specifically remember) and they tasted so sawdusty (even for novelty cookies) that I've never been back. I second Dessert Trends, Rahier (yummy madeleines) and Jules. I would've also mentioned Konditor in the Beach for cakes, but it seems they've closed.

            1. re: urbnmns

              If you mean Queen of Tarts, I have yet to try anything from them and not have my toes curl and eyes cross...

              I didn't know what marshmallows tasted like until I tried theirs - it also begs the question, what the hell are marshmallows made of anyway, and how? The tarts that I've tried (it's part of their name so it's kind of their trademark - I think....) and loved are the Turtle Tart,
              Bitter Love, Snicker Tart, Mexican Chocolate and Chipotle Tart (wow!),
              and Lemon tart.

              If you get something else and like it, please let me know.

              1. re: Moimoi

                The tarts are excellent at the Q of T - the cakes not so great. I recall a wonderful butter tart with a lovely short crust. Pate sucree at its finest.

                1. re: rat under paper

                  i have yet to enjoy a lemon filling more than the version at Q of T. Even better than the once Vienna. The reason is how juicy it is. The filling melts in your mouth and is not the least bit cloying. It could stand to be a bit more tart, but I ain't complaining...

                2. re: Moimoi

                  Thanks Moimoi and co.; I will have to check out more of the "tarty stuff"!

                  1. re: Moimoi

                    I must have gotten a bad batch of marshmallows....I was so disappointed in my vanilla bean ones. I put them in hot chocolate and they were super grainy. Not a hit with my friends.

                  2. re: urbnmns

                    Here's the link... http://www.thequeenoftarts.ca/

                3. Celestin Bakery on Mount Pleasant.......Mmmmmm

                  1. Right in my neighbourhood on Scarlett Rd is an AMAZING pastry shop:
                    Jardranka
                    http://www.jadrankapastries.com/cms/

                    1. I completely second dessert trends. We have had endless cakes and individual desserts from them and everything is great. My other suggestion is Dolcini by Joseph up in Kleinburg, they have beautiful stuff and is tastes delicious. Almost everything they sell are high end individual desserts, and they have just added a gelato case with a few flavours like lemon basil, roasted almond, and a really rich chocolate which are tasty as well.

                      1. I assume what you mean is ‘French Pastries’. Two of my favorite places for French Pastries are Ma Maison at 4243 Dundas St. West and Jules Patisserie Cafe
                        617 Mount Pleasant Rd. These two Patisseries make very fine French Pastries.
                        The Opera gâteau from Ma Maison is very good. I find all the patisserie and boulangerie products at Ma Maison to be very well prepared, visually appealing, and most important all the products have flavour.
                        Unfortunately I’ve only been to Jules Patisserie Café once. However, I was blown away from what I did eat. Since I live in the west end I not often in the Mt Pleasant Rd area, which is sad. From what I have eaten at Jules Patisserie Café it seems that there patisserie and boulangerie products are very well prepared, visually appealing, and most important all the products that I tried have flavour. Some of the goodies we brought home where 6 croissants, but unfortunately we live further than 6 croissants from Jules Patisserie Café, so the croissants never made it.
                        Both Ma Maison and Jules Patisserie Café also make savory goodies.
                        My wife and I are also very fond of Stubbe Chocolate at 653 Dupont Street. Though Stubbe is not producing much French Pastries, they do however are one of the few in Toronto that do make fine Tortes. Stubbe also creates Tortes that are very well prepared, visually appealing, and most important have flavour.
                        What I mean by flavour is that there products are not just sweet. There is actual different taste between layers. Which means in the opera gâteau you do not just taste sweet, you taste chocolate, light coffee, maybe some caramel, some nuttiness from the sponge, in short this gâteau is rich with different flavours. With a glass of Riesling ice wine, a sublime end to a meal!

                        1. Thanks everyone for your suggestions! I will definately check out Dessert Trends. The pastries on their website look SOOOOOO good! There are no prices listed on the website. Does anyone know what the price range is for their pastries?

                          1. there is a place on steeles, called chocolata, it's quite good for the price.

                            1. I suggest Cake Royale in Streetsville, eastern european style desserts and custom cakes.

                              1. There's a small Japanese-run French pastry place called La Bamboche on East Manor Road (east side of Yonge, just south of Eglinton). Some stunning presentation, and tasty too! Not as heavy as other patisseries.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: gijoeanne

                                  I'm sort of in the area, but have never heard of it... Could you please tell me which retail shops it's located near? Art Shoppe? Grano? Tabule??? Pet store? I'm trying to recall this place and I'm drawing a blank... Thanks.

                                  1. re: Moimoi

                                    Just east of La Coquine restaurant, on the north side of Manor.

                                2. Frangipane is the best desserts in the city, bar none. (on Dupont at St George) Though, to be honest their signature desserts (frangipane) are not my favourites. Though, it isn't what you are looking for the lemon poppyseed with cream cheese icing and lemon curd is awesome!

                                  1. I like Patachou on Yonge at Macpherson- beautiful and delicious french desserts.
                                    Senses also- I have to agree on that one.
                                    Yum. I'm hungry.

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: meld_la

                                      Oh yeah - Patachou!!

                                      1. re: millygirl

                                        Best petits fours, gateau basque, tarte au citron, and bostock: Patachou.
                                        Best madeleines: Clafouti

                                    2. Some good suggestions so far. One that seems to have been missed is Patisserie La Cicogne on Bayview, a few doors south of Cumbrae. At last check, they were of similar quality to most of the places suggested, but slightly more reasonable. Enjoy!

                                      1. I’m resurrecting this topic because it was helpful to me in planning a recent trip to Toronto. I LOVE pastries, and I wanted to try some of Toronto’s best. So I checked out their websites before leaving to narrow them down to the ones that sounded/seemed best, went to those, and bought several items at each shop I visited. Here’s what I found.

                                        The very best pastries I found were at Patisserie La Cigogne ( www.patisserielacigogne.com ), on Bayview south of Eglinton. There was one pastry in particular that was one of the very best slices I’ve eaten in years; in fact, I went back there the next day to get another slice. It was called the “Croq-Pistache”, a mousse cake with a layer of crunchy hazelnut. Other items I had there were excellent as well. If you’re looking for the best pastry in Toronto, go to Patisserie La Cigogne. And thanks to Snarf for the recommendation.

                                        Here are the other places I also visited.

                                        Jules Patisserie Café ( http://celestin.sites.toronto.com/bak... ) was very nice. It was small with a limited selection, but what they had, I liked a lot. In particular, they had éclairs with white/vanilla frosting rather than the traditional chocolate, and I loved these.

                                        Celestin Bakery (a few doors north of Jules) is no longer a carry-out pastry shop; it is strictly a restaurant/café and was not open when I was there in mid-afternoon.

                                        Dessert Trends ( www.desserttrends.ca ) was interesting because they had the biggest selection of pastries of any place I visited. All were very nice LOOKING, but nothing I tried really struck me as all that great in terms of taste – not terrible, but not wonderful either. So this seemed to be the most promising, but turned out to be a disappointment.

                                        Frangipane ( www.frangipane.ca ) was also nothing special – a small shop with a small selection, whose items were just okay.

                                        -----
                                        Celestin
                                        623 Mount Pleasant Road, Toronto, ON M4S 2M9, CA

                                        Cigogne
                                        1626 Bayview Ave, Toronto, ON M4G, CA

                                        Dessert Trends
                                        154 Harbord St, Toronto, ON M5S, CA

                                        9 Replies
                                        1. re: nsxtasy

                                          Too bad you missed La Bamboche.

                                          -----
                                          La Bamboche
                                          4 Manor Rd E, Toronto, ON M4S, CA

                                          1. re: nsxtasy

                                            All these and you left out one of the best, if not the best - Rahier?!

                                            -----
                                            Rahier
                                            1586 Bayview Ave, Toronto, ON M4G, CA

                                            1. re: Charles Yu

                                              Rahier is a shadow of its former self. IMHO, its neighbour, Patisserie La Cigogne, has surpassed it.

                                              1. re: syoung

                                                Interesting comment!
                                                Since I have a mega sweet tooth, I've been frequenting Rahier at least twice a month for the past 8 years! Yes, overall selection of pastries might have declined after they moved into the new premises, but IMO quality still remains as high as before. In general, I find Patisserie La Cigogne's pastries a bit too sweet for my liking and depending on selection, some are a bit 'rough on the edges'.
                                                As a comparison, I think Rahier's pastries is like Lenotre of Paris whilst Le Cigogne is like Dalloyau of Paris. Both one of the best, but one is just a touch above the other.

                                                -----
                                                Rahier
                                                1586 Bayview Ave, Toronto, ON M4G, CA

                                                Cigogne
                                                1626 Bayview Ave, Toronto, ON M4G, CA

                                                1. re: Charles Yu

                                                  La Cicogne and Jules are much better these days than Rahier for pastries. There seems to be a certain cautious blandness to Rahier these days. Maybe that's a result of them selling product to other vendors and having to dumb it down for the Pusateri's crowd. Or maybe some of the effort went out the door when Tournayre left to eventually open Jules.

                                                  With respect to the comparison analogies, it's probably more useful to suggest specific comparisons than French analogies. Your impressions are probably of more interest than where else you might have dined.

                                                  -----
                                                  Rahier
                                                  1586 Bayview Ave, Toronto, ON M4G, CA

                                                  Pusateri's
                                                  1539 Avenue Rd, Toronto, ON M5M, CA

                                                  1. re: Snarf

                                                    Went to Jules recently on a Sunday and was disappointed by their lack of selection. Ended up buying a few chocolate and almond croissants instead!.

                                                    Back to Rahier,. May be diversification into providing quiches and sandwiches in their premise is another culprit?! However, their Tarte Brittany is still the best and is the closest to my favourite ' Tarte Normande' which unfortunately, to my knowledge, is not available in Toronto but only available in France!

                                                    A slice of the tarte with a glass of Riesling icewine is match in heaven!

                                                    -----
                                                    Rahier
                                                    1586 Bayview Ave, Toronto, ON M4G, CA

                                                    1. re: Snarf

                                                      Tournayre left long, long ago and opened Tournayre down at Queen & Woodbine, which they then closed in 2003. I have been a customer at Rahier since the summer they first opened, sometime around 1995. I do not recall Tournayre being part of the business then, and am not sure of dates of involvement. However, in recent memory and at least the last decade, there has been no Tournayre. Nevertheless, Rahier has been stellar for much of that time, and I sincerely hope it has not deteriorated, as others mention. (I don't stop in as often as I did, anymore.)

                                                      1. re: Full tummy

                                                        Tournayre is the pastry chef at Jules on Mt. Pleasant.

                                                        1. re: Snarf

                                                          Yes, I have been to Jules many times, thanks. I only meant there has been no Tournayre at Rahier for a long time. He came back a few years ago and started anew. Doing a decent job of things, too, based on my experiences there.

                                                          -----
                                                          Rahier
                                                          1586 Bayview Ave, Toronto, ON M4G, CA

                                            2. A vote for the Drake's baked goods. Count me part of the cult of David Chow. Thuet's got a serious competitor there...

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                                              Thuet
                                              609 King St W, Toronto, ON M5V1M5, CA

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: Thatcher

                                                Which baked goods do you like at the Drake? Most of the baked goods I've had at the Drake are what I would consider comfort food- scones, red velvet cupcakes- good, somewhat hip/trendy, but also somewhat ordinary. The sticky toffee pudding wasn't particularly good the one time I ordered it, but a couple of my friends love it.

                                                -----
                                                Thuet
                                                609 King St W, Toronto, ON M5V1M5, CA

                                              2. Rahier gets my vote, but I also hear that Patisserie Tournyere is back somewhere in town. Also, in the Beach, Zane is good.

                                                -----
                                                Rahier
                                                1586 Bayview Ave, Toronto, ON M4G, CA

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: m4240z

                                                  Ah yes! Zane is good! Totally forgot about that! Way too far a drive for me just to satisfy my sweet tooth though!

                                                2. Nadege was sublime.