Best of CityPlace

Sweet, savoury, sinful eclairs made in-house at Queen West’s Nugateau are irresistible (Concord also sweetens the deal)

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Starting from December 15 to Dec 25, get $5 off your order at Nugateau at 717 Queen St. W. All you have to do is show a Nugateau employee that you’re following both Concord CityPlace and Nugateau Instagram accounts and have them take a photograph of your phone as a proof, Concord will chip in $5 to your purchase! For a limited time only,happy eating!

Spectacular pieces of artwork line the shelves of a stunning Queen West shop near CityPlace.

And we’re not talking paintings or sculptures. Rather, eclairs.

A simple, classic eclair, yes, is heavenly. But at Nugateau at 717 Queen St. W., the options are endless.

“When flavours are taken away, people get upset,” the baker Atul tells me.

There are 15 flavours, on average $7 per piece.

I bite into a crunchy, chocolatey eclair. “It’s a classic hazelnut praline dipped into chocolate,” Atul explains, as I take my last bite.

The eclair, now gone, was named Romeo. How appropriate.

“It tastes like a Ferrero Rocher!,” exclaims Kadir, an employee, watching me as my nod my head in agreement, still savouring the chocolate.

Next, I spot another eclair that has a tiny shot glass of milk sticking out of it. Yes, milk. It’s the “cookies and milk” eclair, and it tastes as you would expect — like childhood.

“It’s reminiscent of Oreos and milk,” Atul says.

He’s right. A bit crunchy at the top and not too sweet, the eclair is perfect.

In fact, it’s their best seller, followed by the salted caramel, which is sticky and sweet.

So sticky that when I introduce myself to Atul, shaking his hand, he says “I’m sorry, my hands are sticky.”

It doesn’t bother me, as I bite into the Black Forest eclair, exactly as you’d imagine, the delightful pairing of cherry and chocolate.

Atul explains that every day the bakers make a batch of 250 pieces, taking about eight hours from start to finish, including time to both fill and decorate by hand — all in-house.

And you can tell Atul is passionate about it.

“The pastry is so versatile. It’s an open canvas with so many pairings and end results. There are so many options.”

Nugateau makes the most of that versatility, with introducing new flavours regularly. Right now they offer six-

holiday flavours until December 31. The “snowbelle” is their best-selling holiday flavour, made of apricot opalys

ganache, coconut chantilly, and white chocolate snowflakes. It’s as indulgent as it sounds.

As if holiday flavours weren’t enough, Nugateau also offers savoury eclairs on the weekends.

“The nature of the pastry is so neutral, it worked,” Atul says. “There’s always one person who doesn’t want sweets.”

The savoury flavours are foie gras, ham and cheese, and smoked salmon with wasabi.

There’s something for everyone. If you’re looking for a sweet (or savoury) gift idea, Nugateau’s packaging is also stunning, and during the holiday season, they sell between 50 and 80 boxes per day, mostly corporate orders. But there’s nothing stopping you from ordering some for your favourite aunts, baristas, concierges, cousins, moms, dads, postal workers, and 416 Mag writers. Just saying.

And if you’re venturing to Yonge and Queen on your holiday shopping, don’t fret, Nugateau also has a shop at the Saks Food hall by Pusateri’s inside Hudson’s Bay at 176 Yonge Street.

Concord’s offer recap:

  • Limited time offer December 15 to Dec 25.
  • Show a Nugateau employee that you’re following both Concord CityPlace and Nugateau Instagram accounts.
  • Nugateau will take a photograph of your phone as proof.
  • $5 off your order at Nugateau’s 717 Queen St. West location.

Happy eating!

 

Diana Pereira

Diana Pereira is a journalist, a university journalism teacher, a world traveller, a fair-weather kayaker, and a frequent bruncher. She's working on her mermaid status, travelling to as many countries as she can that include a body of water and when she's home in Toronto, you can find her in a kayak on Lake Ontario.