We’ve made an amazing discovery. Deep in downtown Los Angeles in the area known as Little Tokyo, there is a very odd mall that looks like a fortress called the Little Tokyo Marketplace. Within this mall is a shop that sells what just may be the greatest pastry ever, the simple macaroon.
First, the spelling. According to Wikipedia, a macaron is a sweet confectionery. Its name is derived from an Italian word “maccarone” or “maccherone”. Since the English word macaroon can also refer to the Coconut macaroon, many have adopted the French spelling of macaron to distinguish the two items in the English language. However, this has caused confusion over the correct spelling of the cookie. Either way you spell it, there’s a shop called Paulette that makes some truly incredible macaroons and macarons.
Inside, its like being in Tokyo. Everything is very weird and very clean. Its a cool place to shop to or take visitors to the city. Another great feature is a full size Japanese supermarket, filled with fresh exotic fruit, fish and meats, along with all those cool Japanese packaged snacks usually only available in Japan. The store also stocks Japanese toiletries, cleaning products, its very similar to shopping in Tokyo.
The famous destination inside the mall is Beard Papa’s cream puffs, a famous Japanese pastry. They are amazing cream puffs that are filled on the spot, as you order them, keeping the pastry part from getting mushy. Japanese ingenuity at its best.
Back to the macaroons. According to their website, the company is a partnership between Paulette Koumetz, who has a passion for the celebrated Parisian macaroni, and French pastry chef extraordinaire Christophe Michalak, winner of the 2005 Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie, with his passion for reinventing the classics. The combination works perfectly.
Flavors include caramel, Caribbean chocolate, coconut, Colombian coffee, lemon, Madagascar vanilla, Sicilian pistachio, sweet wedding almond, earl grey tea, violet cassis and seasonal flavors like rose, pineapple and coconut, passion fruit and our favorite raspberry. They are like two lite fluffy cookies, with wonderful filling in the middle. Each wonderful macaroni is $1.60 and a very stylish gift box of 12 is $19. The company has a website and sells by mail, if you can’t make it to Little Tokyo.
The main location is in Beverly Hills, 9466 Charleville Boulevard at Beverly Drive, and has won design awards for its cool design. They also just opened a location in San Francisco as well, 437 Hayes St, (Cross Street: Gough St).
We’ve traveled the world, including many trips to France and we consider ourselves pastry lovers. The raspberry macaroons were just perfect and one of the best pastries we’ve ever had. The cookie part is lite and fluffy and the filling, oh that filling, its so sweet and perfect.