Limited edition Easter chocolates and seasonal cream puffs for winter.
My new go-to for birthday cakes is actually birthday cream puffs. More and more restaurants are not accommodating outside desserts and cakes to celebrate birthdays within their walls. So my solution is the cream puff. The ones from “Beta 5” are especially beautifully and absolutely delicious. A single serve round with no need to cut and slice, and they look just as good with candles stuck atop. You might not be able to get them personalized, but with unique flavours and accompanying decorations they are quite the celebratory treat. With these you don’t have to ask for a knife to cut, or plates to serve, and if they don’t let you eat them inside, you can easily eat with your hands on the sidewalk, outside the restaurant.
I travelled to an industrial area, cleverly on industrial street. A warehouse shop along with other small batch, local operators like themselves. So here I was picking them up on Sunday for Monday. “Beta 5” is not open on Mondays. I was just in time for the last of their Easter treats and took advantage.
For Easter, the third busiest season for chocolates after Valentines and Christmas they offered seasonal filled eggs, chocolate bunnies, and cream eclairs.
Their bunnies were the most impressive. These weren’t your regular 2D hollow rabbit chocolate figures. With pointed ears and a round nose, this was gourmet chocolate art, crafted to look like they were blown from a balloon and shaped by a clown. Their rounded parts were posed to mimic the action of break dancing. Bunnies tilted on their side, balancing on their front left paw. Each was made in either milk or dark chocolate and dripped over with milk, dark, and white chocolate robes.
On today, the last day that they were being offered I walked into at 1pm to a lady buying one for her daughter, leaving only two more small ones on the shelf and two larger ones beside it. I skipped it altogether as I am not a fan of solid chocolate, plus they were too cute and wonderful to eat. And at $30 a pop for the small, they were too pricy to have as melt-able art with no other purpose.
Though I did take the time to take in and appreciate their display of these dancing bunnies and other Easter chocolates for sale. Located behind glass at their check out counter, these were bunnies in multiples, surrounded by peanut butter quail eggs and praline egg halves filled with hazelnut, raspberry almond, and cocoa nibs.
The crown jewel of this display was a large white chocolate bunny drizzled similarly in rainbow drippings. It sat balancing on three similarly toned coloured eggs, tip to bottom.
Seeing them online and having them recommend, was enough of a push to get one of each of the Easter eclairs. They were essential the same batter and cream as the cream puffs, but in a longer and less round presentation, with extra embellishments.
The “strawberry vanilla eclair” was stunning. White and pink frosting entwined in ribbons with vanilla bean speckles, and tiny candy daisies. Like its colours, the different flavours comes through in the both strawberry and the vanilla. Like a strawberry ice cream milkshake or the flavour of pink pocky. It was lighter and not as sweet as it looks.
The “malted chocolate eclair” was a pretty decent contrast. Not heavy or sweet either, but a more solid flavour. This one is definitely for the chocolate lovers with its velvet smooth mocha as light as foam.
As for the cream puffs, I picked up as many that fit into a single box, five. Five of their limited time winter collection cream puffs, seeing as they are only around for a certain time. I got everything, but the “passion sesame”. I was choosing them by look and not flavour, and out of the six in the collection, I deemed this the one I was willing to miss.
“Banana tonka”. The gentle flavour of banana melded with the clean simpleness of vanilla. “Tonka beans” are used as a vanilla substitute, with a strong fragrance similar to sweet woodruff.
The “pineapple yogurt” had a purposefully melty appearance whereas the other cream puffs were perfect in their fold of cream adorning each top. The tartness of pineapple and yogurt played well off one another in parallel.
The “spiced mango” included a cuff of orange dyed chocolate. It had a zesty note paired with the sweetness of ripe mango.
The “mojito” as topped with lime shavings. Didn’t get the kick of rum, but got the lime just fine.
The “coconut” was most captivating with it perfect pillow of white and the miniature chocolate coconut sitting on top of it. The “coconut” was accurate in its hash marks and textured scraping. I was impressed, it was too perfect to eat. But good thing I caved into the craving as the milky flavour of coconut is one not to be missed.
During my last visit I grabbed a box of their signature chocolate collection. It included a square of their “salted chocolate caramel”. Then, I wondered why they were so popular. Popular enough to sell by the boxes, a set of six and another of twelve. Coming back for more now, I got it. These are now my favourite salted caramel chocolates. Melty chocolate paired with taffy like caramel, a texture that was as fun to eat, as it was good to savour under your tongue. Sweet, but not so much that you couldn’t enjoy one after another, then another.
Today they also had cherry chocolate samples at the pick up counter, cut into halves they were ready for sampling and I have wasn’t too shy to help myself to one. It was a nice dark wine-like cherry filling to compliment the dark chocolate that enrolled it.
They take your order and you pay, leaving your name. When your order is put together they call you by name to gather it at the counter. I appreciate the fact they they show you what’s inside the box before they shut the lid and pack it all up in a paper bag. It gives you peace of mind in what you are taking home. At this point they also humour you if you want to take a photo of the open box. A photo now, in case they don’t last the car ride home.
Would I come back? – Yes.
Would I line up for it? – Yes.
Would I recommend it? – Yes.
Would I suggest this to someone visiting from out of town? – Yes.
I have their website link as a button on the home screen of my phone, and I am already patiently waiting for next season’s chocolates and cream puffs. So I will be at least back once a season. Don’t deny your cravings.