Sadaharu Aoki, boutique Vaugirard, Paris
Saturday, September 3, 2011

Within a 10 minute walk from school, there is a famous small bakery that specializes in Japanese and French fusion styled pastries, called Sadaharu Aoki. The Chef himself, Sadaharu Aoki, is originally from Japan and came to France to work for almost 10 years before opening his first boutique in Paris in 2001. Now he has over 4 boutiques in France, and 3 in Tokyo and 2 in Taipei.

After class one day, a friend and I made a trip to the boutique on Vaugirard (35 rue de Vaugirard 75006 Paris). We bought the Bamboo, matcha éclair, and a few macarons and small items to take home. Unfortunately, the items I enjoyed most were not their pastries. My favourite was their mini yuzu cakes which were soft, moist, and beautifully accented with yuzu. They don’t look that exciting, but I really recommend getting them.

Their chocolate sablée was also very good. It’s an extremely rich, buttery, melt-in-your-mouth cookie with a layer of croquant (praline) made from cocoa nibs and almonds, a nice combination of textures. As for the macarons, I found that flavours were very well pronounced and I especially loved the black sesame one.

The black sesame reminded me of this rich, dark, and nutty black sesame ice cream from my favourite Japanese sushi restaurant, called Zen, in Toronto, Canada. This is honestly, the best sushi I’ve had in Canada. And this is coming from someone who grew up in Vancouver where there is an abundance of good sushi restaurants and fresh seafood. This will be something to talk about in another post.

Back to Aoki’s macarons. Overall, I found that the macarons were a tiny bit sweeter and more dense. It might be that the macarons I happened to have were all made with a filling that was ganache-based. That being said, I still enjoyed them very much and I would definitely buy them again. I mean, where else in Paris are you going to find roasted green tea, yuzu, and black sesame macarons?

Bamboo (matcha opera cake). Beautiful alternating layers of matcha jaconde (almond sponge cake) infused with some alcohal, chocolate ganache, matcha buttercream, and topped with a layer of matcha ganache. I really liked the concept and design of this cake but the taste didn't measure up to my expectations. I felt that there was an excessive amount of alchohal and a slightly grainy texture (like fine sugar crystals) which I didn't enjoy.

Mini yuzu cakes, black sesame macaron, and chocolate sablée with a croquant topping made from cocoa nibs and sliced almonds.

Matcha éclair. This had a very strong green tea flavour which I really liked but it was a little bit on the sweet side (mostly from the fondant glaze on top) for me.

Roasted green tea and earl grey macaron with ganache filling. You can definitely taste the flavour in each macaron.

One Glorious Comment
  • Heide
    October 10, 2012
    Hi, I was at ferrandi also, and went to his shop. In fact I found the desserts beautiful but the taste was less inspiring. Living in Japan, I find it necessary to master the Opera, perfect layers, etc If you come across a great one, pls let me know, okay?