De farine et d'eau fraiche- awesome new bakery
Checked out "De farine et d'eau fraiche" after having driven by and being enticed by it's appealing window. It is my new dream café/bakery! The aesthetic inside is gorgeous, the baking is displayed like treasures, tea is served in vintage china, little miniature wedding cakes for one are on display (60$ a piece, but each as precious and meticulously crafted as a Fabergé egg), I can go on. The baking is delicious- we had the carrot cake, a flaky buttery orange pastry, a petit four, and a chipolte chocolate caramel, and everything was delicious. The servings are small, but the prices are reasonable- and it gives you an excuse to try more than one thing. The owner and her staff are equally charming. They serve lunch as well and seemed to have nice options. On Amherst below Ontario. A perfect venue for high tea! http://www.dfef.ca/
I have been here several times since it opened (I live nearby) and it is a genuinely beautiful space with great baking and coffee and hot chocolate. I am especially fond of the homemade caramels (my faves so far as the fleur de sel, peanut and chocolate and garam masala) and they've inspired me to learn to make my own. While delicious, I did think the sandwiches are a bit overpriced, but I would order them again anyway, because I really like the place!
I was there a few weeks ago. It is truly a beautiful spot! Lovely atmosphere. Found it through a couple of Montreal blogs that were decrying the need to spruce up that area of Amherst street with more cafes. I haven't eaten their lunches but strongly recommend anything they bake that is matcha-tea related! I had the matcha tea cake (cheesake with matcha in it) the first time, and then the second time I had an assortment of matcha tea cookies. Really nice tea selection (they had lavender earl gray), too.
Well, I sampled their goods for the first time yesterday and can happily concur with the above posters - it was great. We bought each of the 3 sandwiches on offer (steak, pear and bleu cheese, grilled cheese and a cold chicken and chickpea with tons of fresh herbs and greens). All 3 were delicious - the grilled cheese was very decadent and the cold chicken and chickpea was incredible.
Caramels - fab, my favourites were sel and amande. I tried almost all of them and I am just not a fan of this thing combining sweet/buttery with what can taste, to me, a little medicinal sometimes (lavender as an example). This isn't a criticism of the caramels, though, more it is a statement of my own tastes. I did like the chipotle.
Best of all was a peach tartlette in what was by far the best pastry I have ever had from a bakery - here in Montreal or anywhere else (I don't have tons of experience but I do love baked goods and eat them a lot!). I actively had to stop myself from going back for more today but will surely cave by the end of the week. :)
Brioche and shortbread cookies were awesome, particularly a heart shaped cookie 'sandwich' with run raisin filling.
I recently tried a few things from Guillaume atfer recs from here and I have to say I wasn't blown away - especially by the baguette - is that really the best to be had in Montreal? It wasn't *bad* but it didn't seem outstanding either. I am not officially saying anything about Guillaume, tho, and will be back to try other things from them - one visit is not enough for me to form an opinion.
Unless that opinion is positive. DFEF have a new, loyal customer in me and I think you all need to try that tartlette. omg it was good.
Thanks for this interesting update as I haven't been back since my post and I never tried peach tartlette nor the caramels, so I'll have to go back! I'm in to all things lavender which you mentioned can admittedly can have a bit of a medicinal/antiseptic taste to it but I'm still going to have to try it. After spending lots of time in Japan I think DFEF does matcha in their baked goods/cakes extraordinarily well. Those are worth trying too...
You know what? I *did* try those matcha cookies (not cake) and forgot to mention them with all the other stuff to rave about. They WERE delicious.
What's a bit funny is I am a lavender nut too, but for my nose. I carry around a little vial of essential oil and often dab some on my pillow before bed or under my nose if I feel nauseous. I love the stuff. And the lavender caramel tasted like it had real lavender in it, not lavender 'flavour' whatever that is. Definitely try it, it sounds like you may fall in love.
Just a heads up - DFEF has awesome gingerbread cookies right now, that taste of actual ginger.