I don’t pass through Cooroy often, but whenever I do, it is not without visiting Maison de Provence. If you have been to Maison de Provence, you will understand why, if not, well, you need organise a visit.
Maison de Provence really is reminiscent of a traditional French patisserie. It is just beautiful. Pretty French-style trinkets and decorator items, and the pièce de résistance… the sweets cabinet… ahhh… French bliss… filled with wonder and whimsy. It is the passion of one very talented pâtissier, Eric Pernoud. To see this master craftsman at work behind the looking glass through to the kitchen is worth the visit alone. This place is a Francophile’s dream.
I needed to pull myself together so I could focus on the lunch menu, which is no easy feat with all of the sweets and pastries dazzling like jewels.
Maison de Provence also has a wonderful range of lunch options all with a slight French feel; they even have escargot, if you dare.
I just wanted something light and yummy and the roasted pear salad was speaking my language… especially the bit about the smoked speck lardons #yesplease. The salad also had a lovely mix of chicory, parmiggiano shards and some cherry tomatoes and a light dressing. Though really, all I cared about were the smoked speck lardons. It actually reminded me of salad my grandmother used to make… that was some 20 something years ago, so it has been a long time between smoked speck!
My cherry babe chose the oven roasted beef tenderloin with parisienne potatoes and glazed vegetables. At first, I admit, he was a little disappointed… he is not a dainty diner. He likes his portions big and overflowing, and tenderloins, well they are not generally an ample serve. However, his initial disappointment abated once he had his first mouthful which was filled with tenderness and flavour, so all good. And… we both had room for dessert.
Now really, it needs to be said. You do not come to Maison de Provence and not leave room for dessert – it is just not logical.
If anything you forgo lunch and go straight to dessert, or even just visit for the purpose of a sweet treat – no matter the time of day. But you never, not have the dessert.
And it was a tough decision… soooo many divine looking sweet extravagances. My cherry babe decided on the sourdough brioche jam sugar doughnuts in an instance and I had to admit, they were pretty enticing. There were myriad macarons that also teased me from within the cabinet… it all looked so pretty. However, in the end I decided on the petit framboise.
Ahhh, the bliss of it. Delicately light shortcrust pastry, and a fluffy raspberry custard of sorts. A decadent raspberry macaron crowning this regal little treat, and a shred of gold leaf – my mineral intake for the day – isn’t it supposed to give everlasting life or something? I think that is what I like the most about true French pastries and desserts – they are so decadent. They are also dainty and light; they fill you just enough to avoid any semblance of indulgence remorse. Instead you leave wide-eyed with a smile on your face, knowing that you will be back some time soon to polish of some more of those little French beauties.
Thinking about it now, I need to make myself pass through Cooroy more often… it’s not like I don’t have the perfect excuse…
Visit Maison de Provence’s facebook page for more information… and inspiration…
Maison de Provence
9/13 Garnet St,
This story was written by Petra Frieser – Pebbles + Pomegranate Seeds