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Botanist x Lysée

Botanist x Lysée, dessert collaboration

Today we were at Botanist for a preview reception of their latest collaboration. I appreciate how the Fairmont Pacific Rim is bringing world wide talent to the threshold of Vancouver’s culinary scene. From award winning chefs and masters of the cocktail, to the latest: chef Eunji Lee from New York’s award-winning Lysée pastry boutique.

This is the Botanist x Lysée dessert collaboration, where we got to meet and chat with chef Eunji Lee as she teams up with Fairmont Pacific Rim’s in house, executive pastry chef, Kate Siegel. Together they are bringing ticket holders a six-course, dessert tasting menu, within Botanist.

“From decadent classics to avant-garde sweet creations, this dessert tasting menu promises an unforgettable experience with a symphony of flavours, meticulously crafted to reflect the distinct styles of these two renowned pastry chefs.” (Best said from the press release).

For those not familiar, Lysée is a two floored cafe in New York. Helmed by “the hottest pastry chef” in the city, who has won plenty of awards to further this title. The first floor of Lysée is where you can experience everything and taste their baked goods. And the top floor is their pastry gallery where food becomes art.

These 6 courses feature 3 desserts from each respective chef. Their inspiration was spring, drawing from in season ingredients like rhubarb and spruce tips. The following are sample sized bites, where the look and serving of the actual desserts, during the actual seating will be much more fulsome.

The following is in the order of which it was brought out and served canapé style.

From Lysée was this crispy and crumbly Shortbread cookie with a spruce tip chocolate ganache. I am a big fan of a buttery shortbread cookie so this was my favourite bite of the set. I was even able to make out the unique accent of the spruce tips, it tempered the sweetness of the milk chocolate and added a whisper of peppery spice.

A more sumptuous chocolate option is this photogenic cake from Kate of Botanist. Breton cookie base, caramelized bananas, scotch gel, and Smoked Dark Chocolate Marquis. The familiar flavour of the cookie crust struck a nostalgic chord. This was mostly a smooth and rich chocolate whip, whereas I wanted an even bite with mousse along side cookie and caramelized banana slice. This one is for the chocolate enthusiasts.

This is Lysée‘s signature dessert, self titled “The Lysée“. It is Korean toasted brown rice mousse, caramel, and elliot pecan. It smelled like marshmallows when I picked it up. And was surprisingly heavy for a cake. However, once you bite through the heavy and thick shell what you discover underneath is a cloud of rich fluff. And at its centre is a scoop of crispy textured crumb, that together with the mousse reminded me of fine grain granola with yogurt or milk and the bits of cereal that end up at the bottom of the bowl. Similar to the above, I wanted a more even ratio of topping to base, which I am sure you do get with the full sized version or this. Which I am told, will also come with a design or pattern, other than this gentle moment of gold flake here.

The Bergamot choux with binchotan bruleed honey meringue was like an elevated lemon meringue pie that evolved the more you chewed and got to know it. Whereas the above was heavy, this was deceptively light weight. It had a tart lemon gel centre that made you pucker, a styrofoam-crunch rice cake-like base, and a charred smokey burn topping that could overwhelm. By itself the latter most can be off putting, but you need to look at it as a whole, to appreciate the collective flavours that Kate of Botanist has brought to this.

This is Chef Eunji’s take on Yakgwa, the traditional deep fried, wheat-based Korean cookie that spoke to her roots. This was ginger, honey, maple syrup, and sesame oil. I liked the size of each, forcing you to pause and savour. It reminded me of the bottom of a baked pie, crunchy and caramelized. It was also slightly acrid, which I liked and sweetened with the flavour of honey and dates.

And the last dessert from Botanist was this mousse in a glass. Caramelized white chocolate namelaka, cara cara oranges, almond orange financier, eider over gele, and poached rhubarb. This was one of the sweeter desserts given the white chocolate cream base. I appreciated how it was curated with a ball of cake and had each sliver, slice of fruit, and gel perfectly placed.

This menu is available starting tomorrow and reservations are required with only a few seats are left.

1038 Canada PI, Vancouver, BC V6C OB9
(604) 695-5500

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