Welcome to the world of De Farine et D’Eau Fraîche!
DF+EF is a dreamy new pâtisserie on Amherst that has the perfect combination of creativity and expertise. They have just opened and they are sure to be a huge success. DF+EF is near Robin, right across the street from the community centre Ste-Catherine d’Alexandre which is also boasting a beautiful new mosaic trim and a new green roof.
Here is a baker’s dozen of the finest features that set DF+EF apart from Montreal’s pâtisseries.
- A cordial proprietor and convivial staff. The owner, Marilu, along with Cathy and the other staff always smile and ask how we are doing. It’s so nice to chat a bit, and suddenly feel at home.
- Sweet imagination. No need to head to Paris for a treat. It is all right here ranging from a small guilt-free bite to a larger indulgence; boule au chocolat et crème pâtisserie, tea cakes (à la rose is my favourite so far!), cookies in a multitude of shapes and flavours, homemade Pocky, caramels, muffins wrapped in charming brown paper, scrumptious cakes and pastries.
The earl grey crème brûlée was everything you want in a crème brûlée. A nice crunch of caramelized sugar on top and incredibly creamy, nicely chilled down below. I love the creative flavour combinations; earl grey, milk chocolate with earl grey and lavender, or vanilla.
Miniature wedding cakes are a specialty. Each one is a work of art; modern, sophisticated and unique. I can see them being featured at many types of special occasions like graduations, showers, anniversaries and milestone birthdays. I recently ordered a chocolate tart with caramelized bananas and Irish creme and it was perfect for my chocolate-loving friend.
- Composting coffee cups for take out coffee. Marilu rightly states that most people will not recycle a paper coffee cup, this is why she has made special efforts to import composting coffee cups all the way from Australia.
- Fun. Over the last several weeks, we have done our homework in researching the place. We have developed a rapport with the staff and they have occasionally brought a small taste of something to try. While we have been in, we have tried to do our part in taste testing new caramel flavours, such as one with coriander and apricots (yum!), a little carrot cake, a new type of cookie, and bite of caramel popcorn. We love it here!
- Something savoury. If sweet treats do not suit you, then there is always a little something savoury. I have a friend from New Zealand who has lamented for years that there are no savoury muffins in all of Montreal. She is in for a treat when she returns to the city in April!
- An enticing breakfast sandwich made with their own english muffin, 1 year old cheddar from l’Ile-aux-Grues, farm fresh bacon, an organic egg, little bits of green sprouts, red pepper and Kewpie japanese mayonnaise. It is the best breakfast sandwich I have ever tasted.
- Filling, healthy lunch features. The lunch specials are perfect for the type of weather we are experiencing at the moment. They are hearty, real food, with home-made flavour, made by someone who loves to cook. The lunch special pictured above is a curried chicken in a cashew sauce, served with jasmine rice. This is my kind of lunch! The paninis are unique, deluxe and satisfying. The tuna panini is nicely accented with feta, artichokes and black olive tapenade. And if you like, it can be served with a small portion of potato chips and a soup or salad.
Many people come just for the fantastic speciality coffees, teas and hot chocolates served all day long.
- It speaks volumes that DF+EF uses organic sugar and eggs in all of the baking. They also use organic milk, cocoa, tea, fair trade organic coffee and some organic spices. Flavour is key, so they also use local meats from Nordest and local cheeses.
- Fair-trade, organic Coco Camino sugar served with coffee and tea.
- Beautiful tea service.
- You can take it with you, too. Everything can be made to go and there is a plethora of little treats lining the counter, ready for quick pick-up.
And I have not even mentioned the décor! Large elegant windows, fascinating wall treatments that remind us of icing as well as beautiful and comfortable furnishings with the adorable DF+ EF logo stamped on the tables.
So, take a little time and spend it in De Farine et D’Eau Fraîche. You are in for a treat!
1701 rue Amherst
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Tammy Schmidt and Natasha Henderson, Montreal.