A while back my friend told me about Macaron Day TO, where local patisseries all across Toronto come together to offer complimentary macarons to the general public at large. This is offered at no cost to the costumer, at a limit of one per person. A portion of all additional macaron purchased on Macaron Day TO goes to Charity. This was way back in March.
Sadly I missed Macaron Day, but naturally, I gave the participating patisseries list a thorough read and took mental notes (who wouldn't?). The list then got buried somewhere in a massive pile of information (most of them useless) in my head and got lost. Until recently when I had to take a trip to Midtown, a light bulb went off... I remembered that one of the participating shops, Ruelo Patisserie, was practically around the corner. I mean, I had to go, right?
The storefront seems relatively average, nothing exciting, no fireworks going off here. I instantly regretted the three freaking blocks north I had to walk from where I was visiting to go to this place on a hot humid day. But since I was already here, displaced three whole city blocks away, I thought that I may as well check this place out. My laziness knows no bounds. The interior was arguably nicer, gives off the impression of a small quiet place, tucked away from the rest of the city.
Ruelo Patisserie exterior & interior
What was I here for? Macarons of course. Ruelo Patisserie is truly inventive with their macaron flavours, they have your typical chocolate and vanilla macaron that every run-of-the-mill French bakery have, and they also have flavours like Green Tea Sesame, Yuzu and Wasabi Grapefruit (I'm seeing an Asian influence here, don't you?).
Top row, left to right: Pistachio Raspberry, Passion Fruit, Espresso, Yuzu, Ruelo, Cassis and Vanilla
Bottom row, left to right: Creme Brulee, Pure Chocolate, Cinnamon Fig, Green Tea Sesame, Blueberry lemon, Earl Grey, Fleur de Sel Caramel, Rose Lychee Raspberry, Wasabi Grapefruit, Raspberry
I got six macarons, because let's face it, they ain't cheap at $2.25 to $3 a piece. Noticed how I said "six" and not "half a dozen"? Ruelo Patisserie doesn't do half or full dozens at a slightly discounted price, unlike other patisseries. But that is okay. It is worth it.
Here is what I got
Top row (left to right): Green tea sesame, Wasabi grapefruit, Passion fruit
Bottom row (left to right): Ruelo signature macaron, Creme brulee, Cinnamon Fig
I thought the Cinnamon Fig had too much of a cinnamon taste and not enough of a fig taste. The Ruelo's signature macaron (milk chocolate ganache with a crispy praline center) was nice, but nothing to write home about. The Creme Brulee wasn't memorable. The Green Tea Sesame was quite tasty, very similar in flavour to a lot of Asian desserts I have had in the past; it was a bit of an acquired taste.
The flavours of both of these are so incredibly bright, it is so unexpected it wakes you up, and you finally start paying attention and stop being bored. They are fruity, bright, and packs such a concentrated flavour it punches you in the face.
They also have assorted miniature cakes that are perfect for one.
Mini cakesFrom left to right: Orange Chocolate, Chocolate Cheesecake, Blueberry Cheesecake and Espresso Dark Chocolate (flour-less)
The mini blueberry cheesecake was for a friend, on his last day at work. Although the truth of the matter is that people come and go, and the only permanent fixtures are those related to you by genetic material. But it is still sad to see people go (at first). I am a true believer that everyone should get a cake on their last day at work, thus the mini cheesecake. Notice any difference between the following picture and the previous picture? The cheesecake got tipped over in its box en route, and I had to reassemble it, sloppily if I may add. I guess the artistry is just not there. My friend said the cake was good, but it's not like he can say otherwise (social convention, you know), so I can't vouch for the cake.
Mini Blueberry Cheesecake - Reassembled
Anyway, this is well worth the trip, you should check it out for yourself. (Additional note: they currently have a Groupon for sale, tea for two with delectable such as scones, danishes and mini sandwiches. Save some money folks!)
Always remember, stressed is desserts spelled backwards.
Until next time,
Likelihood of Returning* = 3/5
* This is a predictor of how likely I will revisit this establishment in the future. My likelihood of returning is dependent upon various factors, such as my personal taste preference, my personal experience at the restaurant, my perception of the value provided by the restaurant, as well as other factors such as location (for example, on a TTC subway line), personal convenience, price and the preference of the friends whom I often dine with.