HK: Macaron Tasting! (Jan. 2013)
I wanted to try some of Hong Kong’s macarons, so I made my friend go on a short macaron eating tour with me. Here’s how it went!
Le Goûter Bernardaud
(at IFC Mall)
16 HKD per macaron
1. Valrhona chocolate (left)
2. Caramel and fleur de sel (bottom)
3. Pistachio (right)
4. Raspberry (top)
Le Goûter Bernardaud is based in Hong Kong and actually has two locations in IFC Mall; we walked past this one first, so we ate the macarons there. We probably should have gotten macarons at the other location in IFC Mall to see how consistent the macarons are, but we didn’t :(. Oh well!
The texture was off; at times, it was too solid, and it felt like there was too much filling. The flavor was there, though! Overall, I thought LGB had the third-best macarons of the stores we tried today.
(at IFC Mall)
20 HKD per macaron
Started by former model Amanda Strang, petite Amanda only has one location. It’s a very local store, so there’s lots of room to go.
There were four available flavors: passion fruit, dark chocolate, pistachio with buttercream, and strawberry.
1. Passion fruit (left)
2. Pistachio with buttercream (right)
The texture was solid, and it avoided the problems of LGB. However, the macarons were WAY too sweet. They felt like sugar bombs :(. Also, those flower things actually hurt more than they help. I would suggest removing those; they should NOT be there. Overall, I thought petite Amanda had the worst macarons of the stores today. It didn’t quite help that they spelled “macaron” as “macaroon”…
(at IFC Mall)
25 HKD per macaron
Jean-Paul Hévin is a French manufacturer of chocolates, and there are two branches in Hong Kong.
Right to left:
-This one was really, really good.
4. Crème brûlée
-This one was also really good.
This was my second-favorite today. The texture beat the previous two; however, at times, the macarons broke apart a little too easily. Flavor-wise, they could be a tiny bit too sweet at times, but overall the flavor was there. I have to mention that they were really, really expensive, though; at 25 HKD, they were the most expensive of the bunch.
(at Harbour City’s Gateway Arcade)
23 HKD per macaron
Ladurée’s a really famous French manufacturer of macarons, and, like the Ladurée back in NYC, we had to wait a bit in line. I want to say that the store here is even more crowded than the one in NYC!
There were actually two parts to the line. It stopped near the end of this store and continued again a few meters away…
The store was ridiculously crowded; it felt like it was considerably more crowded than the NYC one ever was.
These are the flavors they had available!
1. Pistachio (top left)
2. Praline (bottom left)
3. Caramel with fleur de sel (top middle)
-AMAZING; I always love Ladurée’s caramel macarons haha.
4. Chocolate clementine (bottom middle)
-I thought this one was the worst of these.
5. Hazelnut marshmallow (right)
-The hazelnut flavor was there, and the marshmallow aspect texturally added a nice twist.
6. Liquorice (second bag)
This was my favorite of the four places I tried today. The texture was perfect. Flavor-wise, there were one or two that were a tad bit too sweet, but the macarons were for the most part spot-on when it came to sweetness. The macarons tasted like the NYC Ladurée’s macarons!
In the end, here’s how I’d rank the four stores we tried today:
2. Jean-Paul Hévin
3. Le Goûter Bernardaud
4. petite Amanda
Ladurée vs. Pierre Herme
My friend Simon recently compared the vanilla macarons from Pierre Herme and Ladurée (both in Harbour City), and here’s what he had to say about them:
“I compared the vanilla of both. Pierre Hermé is denser when bitten into, thicker, but more homogenous throughout. It was also sweeter. Ladurée’s has a softer lighter texture and definitely more fragrant. Ladurée does have a denser crumb that is left behind in the mouth though. Overall, Ladurée wins for me because of flavor and being lighter overall.
Pierre Herme felt more cakey! I’ve always loved how fragrant Ladurée’s vanilla is. We’ll see how Pierre Hermé fares for the rest of them. Pierre Hermé’s packaging is a little better since each macaron sits in a slot in the box, so they aren’t touching. I do like Ladurée’s box design a lot better though! Also I have too many green Ladurée boxes (~_~;)”