A Sweet Sunday at St. Honoré Boulangerie
We have been wanting to start a Sunday tradition. We do go out on the weekend occasionally to get a cup of coffee or get a treat to take home, but it hasn’t been an actual tradition. We have a dream of going to a wonderful place such as a bakery or patisserie to take in the ambiance and treat ourselves to something special while enjoying each others company. I would like to make this tradition a New Year’s resolution of mine. I think a resolution to eat sweet delightful treats with my sweetheart once a week is worth following through with don’t you?
Being the first Sunday of the year, it had to be a particularly wonderful place we went to. Jade had heard of a place called St. Honré Boulangerie and told me that it had to be on our agenda. I had never heard of a boulangerie, which I came to learn means a ‘french style bakery.’ She showed me their menu online. I saw the word’s ‘Pain au Chocolat’ and I knew there was no argument in the matter. I was more than convinced we had to go in. They have three locations in Portland.
We decided to go to the St. Honoré on the corner of Northwest Thurman and 23rd Place. This location was absolutely packed but we arrived right when the line was just getting manageable. There is quite a bit of seating and plenty of window light, but this day it was wall to wall people. We quickly discovered that coming in around the Holiday Season was a gamble because everybody and their grandmother was there. Literally. While standing in line and sitting at our table we got to hear about how David was doing on the debate team, how cousin Iris is just getting over a touch of the flu, and how Penny and Jennifer are just doing fabulous in dance class. Suffice to say this is a place where the whole family is welcome.
Luckily the small wait and squeezing through the maze of backed up chairs to sit down was well worth the gauntlet. It was hard to not stay after seeing their display case stocked with brilliant and vibrantly colored pastries and the wall of artisan breads. We decided on ordering a pastry with the namesake of the establishment and a bag of their infamous Chouquettes. The Saint Honoré is a puff pastry with a ring of pâte á choux, vanilla custard topped with whipped cream, adorned with three caramel and cream filled choux balls. This was something I definitely wanted to eat all by myself, but I’m pretty sure would have went into a cream puff coma if I did. The custard and whipped cream were a chilled delight surrounded by the fluffy on the inside and crunchy on the outside choux pastry. I have had cream puffs before, but this was like a cream puff on custard filled steroids. Absolutely amazing. The Chouquettes are described on the menu as being ‘addictively delicious,’ and we couldn’t agree more. They are poofy baked pastry balls made with a pâte à choux and sprinkled with rock sugar which create chewy, slightly hollowed balls of perfection. They come a dozen in a bag, which Jade and I shared. I easily could have eaten two bags alone with a big cup of coffee.
For going out on our first traditional Sunday to treat ourselves, I don’t think we could have picked a better place to start.