I have visited “Yandoux bakery” once before, originally when they first open. Then, I came by for a sampling of their patisseries, served in decorative slices and miniatures. Since then they have established themselves as a to go-to for fine cakes, and the only tea salon in the Olympic village neighbourhood.
For the original visit post and more details on their decor and setting, click the link below.
On this Halloween day we reserved a table for two, for their high tea service. An option that must be agreed upon by both parties dining. It came to $56 per person. Here, their set of miniature sweets and two bite savouries are served on a tea tower that is reimagined as a hot air balloon. A sculpture with a rounded bulb that swivels on its platform. This allows for the presentation for savoury bites to be lined up at the bottom, and the two top shelves for dessert.
You get to make two choices when it comes to this set. The flavour of your tea and the filing of your scones. For the former, I got the “Lady Hannah’s whole fruit” tea, after our server pointed it out as being one of their more unique brews. It is described as being bold in both its bright berry colouring that translates to its flavour as well. It was a little sour, but better after a few water refills to the metal encased tea pot.
My guest got the “Caramel” tea, a buttery brew with a hint of vanilla, best enjoyed with some milk. The menu likened it to “fresh caramel cooking on a stove top”.
When our server delivered our metal display, she suggested starting with the “Japanese miso glazed sablefish”, as it is the only item to be served warm. The tender and saucy fish is seasoned in maple syrup and served in a lettuce leaf with the dough of a spring roll that has been chopped up and deep fried. The result, a tasty fish taco with some crunch.
We were not a fan of the “Darjeeling infused chicken basket”. The flavour of the tea was overwhelming the chicken. It made the whimsical item heavy and bitter. Some additional green onions and more mayonnaise for freshness and creaminess would have helped. The waffle cone was a nice idea, but it really didn’t add anything to the portion. I would have much preferred to see this as a chicken sandwich prepared with some celery for crunch and gherkin pickles for sweet tang.
The “Ham bun bun” was an overly cute name for a ham sandwich. A slice of ham, caramelized onions, lettuce, and pickles between two well toasted slices of bread. Although, I didn’t taste the pickles, and would have liked them more pronounced either way. The sandwich was on the drier side, along with the ham. So some jus to dip into or some mayo would have helped moisten things.
Although well presented, the bowl of “mashed potato” was pretty uninspiring. Sweet corn kernels topped with piped potatoes, cream, and pepper. It ate like a side waiting for its meaty main to follow. It wasn’t a fun small bite to eat as is, and it really didn’t help to elevate the rest of the set. At $56 you expect more lustre for each element. I would have preferred a potato salad made with the same ingredients instead.
Where the mashed potatoes sans gravy brought the set down a notch, the “Salmon oshi” brought some of its grove back. BC wild salmon, jalapeño, and their house made sauce. It wasn’t the best or the freshest pressed sushi I have ever had, but considering that I was enjoying its flavour at a bakery, I deem it successful. It is just a shame that the rice was hard and dry.
The “Concorde salad” is basically a fruit salad made with the fruits that were in season, then topping it with cream. I appreciated the effort they put into peeling the skin of each grape and then slicing it into segments. Mixed with orange, strawberry, and raspberry; this made for a great palette cleansing transition as we went from savoury to sweet.
Once again, we were given a choice of scones. My guest got their dark chocolate version that came with large splotches of chocolate chip. I got the white chocolate scones with cranberries and found neither of them visible, nor did I make them out by taste. Although I was very generous with the fresh made berry jam and clotted cream they served with it.
On the same dish that the spreads were served on, were one of their house made macarons for each of us. Each was topped with a tuft of cotton candy that was quick to evaporate in the open air. Here, I would suggest removing the macarons from the tray and setting them aside for dessert. Otherwise the cream makes them soggy well before you get to them. I am not sure of their flavour, but I found it chocolatey and far too sweet.
Their “Matcha” cake did not disappoint. You got a strong matcha flavour with each bite, strong enough to make an impact, but not taste too bitter for a dessert. The sponge is flavoured Matcha, there is a match ganache, and the dessert is finished off with a dusting of matcha powder. Its filling includes a chocolate sugar and some marshmallow, this transition into some texture with a nice crispness to chew through.
Seeing that it was actually October 31, Halloween day today, our bakery/chef reimagined the other desserts with spooky detais. The box “Tiramisu” is prepared with mascarpone cream, jaconde, and nuts. The flavour was good, but I didn’t like its bulbous and grainy textures, it was like eating puffed rice and dry saw dust. Although, I still love it for its little biscuit tombstone.
Out of all the desserts the “Strawberry tart” was by far my favourite for taste. I found the house made strawberry compote very fresh. Its tanginess matched well the luscious cream, decorative and edible chocolate spiderweb, and buttery pastry crust.
The “choux” is a chocolate cream puff filled with a berry fruit compote and topped with diploma cream. With a set of edible eyes they quickly became spooky for the occasion.
As an extra Halloween bonus we were given a serving of banana cake on stick, which was off the menu. This was essentially moist banana bread, naturally sweetened by its feature fruit; and decorated to look like the elongated head of Frankenstein.
The following are some photos of the individual cakes that were available behind the glass showcase today. Which includes their Halloween line up that was only made available until end of day today.
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? – No.
I like the bakery for stunning small desserts, but wouldn’t return for the tea service. It was just okay, but considering that it was $56, it felt a little steep. Don’t deny your cravings.
1731 Manitoba Street, Vancouver BC, V5Y 0H8