The sumptoos display at Edinburgh's Patisserie Florentin
between the biscuit base and the creme patissiere that is designed to stop sogginess in the large fruit tarts is a German touch. Ofcourse. you will find a real Black Forest gateau here.
I must mention one more glorious Edinburgh exception: The Laigh Kitchen. in Hanover Street. Here you can find British cakes that are good and home-baked (as I have found the two are far from synonymous). There is shortcake. coffee cake, chocolate cake, carrot cake. apple and cinnamon cake, fudgey chocolate squares. latticed fruit
slices, and the most delicious chewy, crisp hazelnut meringue with fresh cream and raspberries dredged in icing sugar. Apparently ifyou pour raspberry purée on top it is even better.
Such was the demand that Joan Spicer. who has cooked for her coffee shop cum restaurant for 33 years, agreed to sell cakes direct to the public to take away. But only on Friday mornings. And be warned. she closes when everything’s gone and that is often early.
Glasgow has been better served for ‘ a long time. Delicatessen chains such as Peckhams have a reputation for selective buying that extends to their ;
‘ cake and patisserie ranges. Apart
from the widely available Death by Chocolate. carrot and passion cakes,
j and millionaire‘s shortbread, they 3 stock several sumptuous gateaux
a round cake decorated with madeleines, and Amaretto, a liqueur-soaked amaretto biscuit and cream confection.
Similarly, Fazzi’s stock an Italian range which they receive frozen, but none the worse for it. It includes a glazed apple tart, a chocolate sponge
i i l imported fresh from Italy. Delizia is !
with liqueur, custard cream and a
i dusting ofbitter cocoa powder, and, i best ofall in my opinion, Frutta di ! Bosca, really good biscuity pastry piled high with berries. Fazzi's also buy in patisserie from a German ]
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supplier- Danish pastries, apple I I strudels. cream sponges and Parisian ‘ : choux puffs arrive fresh every 1 morning. i . Apart from its delicatessens. Glagow can boast Patisserie I Francoise. a French-run family i bakery that has been supplying the l . city with fresh croissants, brioches. ‘ ; gateaux and patisserie for over
' fifteen years. The irreverently
: named religieuses are nun-shaped
choux buns with chocolate or coffee
7 cream inside; Gateau St Honore’ is a large assemblage of flaky pastry. choux pastry and fresh and confectioner's cream. And ofcourse there are the essential glazed fruit tarts. Like Florentin in Edinburgh. Patisserie Francoise are happy to prepare profiterole. caramel and almond pyramids known as Pieces Monies. and the centre pieces of many French weddings. Alternatively, you can order traditional wedding cakes and continental versions. The latter tend to be sponge soaked in liqueur, 5 sandwiched with fresh cream and l decorated with a thin layer of icing
and sugar flowers.
A further and wonderfully central Glaswegian treasure is Deli France. A limited and consequently perfect range of patisserie is baked daily on the premises. There are pains au chocolat, spiral pastries with raisins and creme patisserie, croissants filled with almond paste and garnished with flaked almonds. tartlets with strawberry and kiwi,
I mixed fruit. pear and almond or apple. and light moussy bavarois gateaux — raspberry, passionfruit.
peach and cherry.
I Peckhams 100 Byres Road, 357 1454; 43 Clarence Drive. 357 2909; 114 Kirkintilloch Road. Kirkintilloch 776 6050. Delicatessen only. 8.30am—midnight seven days. Unit 100 Central Station. 248 4012; 8am—l 1pm Mon—Sat, 9am-l 1pm Sun. At all Peckhams branches off-sales stop at 10pm. and. like everywhere else. no alcohol is sold on Sundays.
I Fazzi Bros 65/67 Cambridge Street, 332 0941. Restaurant 8am—10.30pm Mon—Sat, 10am—10pm Sun. Delicatessen 9am—6pm Mon—Wed and Sat. 9am—8pm Thurs—Fri, closed Sun. Unit 36. 7 The Avenue, Newton Mearns 639 9804. Cafe-bar 8.30am-1().30pm Mon—Sat, 9am—10pm Sun. Delicatessen 9am—8pm Mon—Fri, 9am—6pm Sat, 10am—5.30pm Sun.
I Patisserie Francoise 138a Byres Road. 334 1882. Coffee Shop open 9.30am—6pm: Patisserie open until
I Deli France 80 Queen Street. 248 5602. Cafe and Patisserie open 8am—5.30pm Mon—Fri. 9am—6pm
I Florentin 25a Thistle Street,~225
I Bridges Cake Shop Balmoral Hotel, I Princes Street 556 2414. Open 9.30am—7.30pm Mon—Sat, 11am—4pm Sun.
I Laigh Kitchen 117a Hanover Street. 225 1552. Open 8.30am—4pm Mon—Sat. Laigh Bakehouse, 121 Hanover Street, open Friday mornings at 8am. always closed by
I Dinner For Two This club sounds like a rather clever idea. Over 800 restaurants from all over Britain. including 21 in Edinburgh and Glasgow. are sufficiently eager to encourage new and regular trade that they are willing to offer two meals for the price of one to club members. The latter. having paid their annual subscription of£45. receive a card and a list of participants in the scheme. arranged geographically and graded according to price. Each time a member cats with another person in an affiliated restaurant. the price of the less expensive meal (starter. main course and dessert a but not drinks and service charge) is deducted from the total bill. For more information. contact Hugh Lockhart. Regional Director. For Two International. 10 London
Street. Edinburgh EH3 6NA. 031 556 3743.
I Braidwoods The Old Fire Station. 50 West
228 4543. Open 7 days 10am—lam. The long-derelict fire station has been polished up. and opened for business last week. The name ofthe new pub refers to James Braidwood. an Edinburgh man responsible for starting the Fire Brigade here and in London. and the theme is maintained
fire service memorabilia. Braidwoods aims to be ‘the kind of pub where you can sit over a coffee and a newspaper in the morning. dine on steak all day and drink real ale until one o'clock in the morning.‘ Food is served between 10am and 7pm and includes such dishes as lamb and curried cream and mushroom stroganoff with brandy for around £3. There is a strong
emphasis on keen service
Port. off the Grassmarket.
inside by an assortment of '
and customers are encouraged to book tables at lunchtime to avoid the pandemonium that can beset lunch breaks elsewhere.
I Sea Food Fair For a feast of West Coast sea food. live music and a taste of specially selected wines. head up to Clachan Farm. near Cairndow. at the head of Loch Fyne on Sat 18 May from 10am. There's also a buffet and dance from 7.30pm for which tickets cost £12.50 and can be booked on 04996 236.
Ken Sykora presents Easter's Digest Thus 30 May on Radio Scotland
“The List 17-30May 1991