This article originally appeared in the latest June edition of Foodie: The Foodie Forks. Read it here!
121 Bonham Strand, Sheung Wan, 3105 8077, with outlets in Wan Chai and Elements Mall
Price: $20 for 3
Look: Appropriately scallop-shaped, browned and with the most homemade appearance of the lot.
Texture: This option was slightly oily on the exterior and quite dry on the inside.
Flavour: These didn’t have much flavour as we were hoping for and almost had an element of staleness to them.
Verdict: We will return to try these again as we suspect they may not have been made fresh on the day and need another chance. Plus, we liked the price.
Price: $35.50 for a mass-produced bag of approximately 20
Look: As you might expect for a store-bought variety, these mini cakes were very uniform in shape and didn’t have the customary shell pattern that is standard in most madeleines.
Texture: Quite a dry bite at first that craves a swish of tea but then turns cakey and cloying upon a few chews. Perhaps better with a hot drink in hand.
Flavour: Very almondy with a processed taste and aroma.
Verdict: Pleasant enough if you needed to eat one to be polite at a tea party but we wouldn’t be reaching for another.
Price: $80 for 3
Look: These are the madeleines that set off our desire to seek out more options of the delicious French tea-time favourite. They possessed a detailed shell shape and large back ridge and were well risen with a subtle sheen on top.
Texture: A delicate crust with an airy, fluffy interior that indicates perhaps a finer flour has been used in the batter. Incredibly soft inside sponge that melted on the tongue with a perfect tea cake consistency.
Flavour: Rich and buttery with an understated orange zest. None of our other competitors held a candle to these magic morsels. Strangely, despite trying Passions, Robuchon and a dozen other cake shops, these four were the only contenders we found as the darling madeleine proved a tricky treat to track down.
Verdict: If you’re in the mood for madeleines, only Le Port Parfumé’s will do.
Price: $40 for 4
Look: A very attractive little confection that was the biggest in size and featured a slick and shiny glaze over each cake front. Sporting a long and defined shell shape and served in a perspiry plastic bag.
Texture: With such an appreciable glaze we anticipated more of an outward crisp than we got. We found the sponge cake very dense and a mushy chew.
Flavour: Very buttery with a faint lemon taste and a hint of vanilla. The sweet glaze didn’t blend with the cake and felt quite separate rather than complementary to the overall flavour.
Verdict: We expected more from this renowned French baker.