Melbourne Restaurant Reviews: The Very Very Hungry Caterpillar

YES, this is yet another Melbourne food blog!

Ladurée (Sydney, NSW)

Level 3 Westfield Sydney
Cnr Pitt & Market Streets
Sydney NSW 2000
+61 2 9231 0491
http://www.laduree.com

Marty and I spent a solid weekend afternoon at the Westfield shopping centre in the CBD, home to some pretty nice stores and of course, great eateries. When I heard that famous French macaron connoisseur Ladurée were sitting shop in Sydney, I knew I had to go.

wp1

Ladurée Sydney itself is a small kiosk in the middle of the third level of the shopping centre. In addition to macarons, they also do teas thus making it an ideal spot to have a breather for half an hour in between bouts of shopping. Unfortunately, there were only a handful of tables – and they were all occupied – so I opted to buy some macarons to take home with me. Just as well for they are $3.20 each if you take away, but $4 each (!!) if you decide to dine in. I guess that’s fair enough though – rent in the CBD is pretty expensive after all.

Nevertheless, $3.20 for one macaron is still pretty dear. Then again, if you’re getting them shipped frozen from Switzerland and having to carefully defrost them before selling them to macaron-loving Australians, I’d imagine there would be some costs involved. But was the price tag worth it?

L-R: Liquorice, pistachio, strawberry marshmallow, salted caramel, vanilla, raspberry, coffee … and another salted caramel.

L-R: Liquorice, pistachio, strawberry marshmallow, salted caramel, vanilla, raspberry, coffee … and another salted caramel.

I bought a box of eight macarons; I can’t remember how much they were – $23? $28? $32? I can’t remember. But they weren’t very cheap. I do remember that when I asked the lady for a box of eight, she suddenly burst out laughing. Perplexed, I asked her if everything was alright and her response was, “Oh no, I wasn’t laughing at you – I was laughing at something my colleague said.” I didn’t see her colleague say anything to her before she had laughed so the whole exchange really was puzzling. Regardless, I shrugged it off, paid for my macarons and walked away.

As you might have noticed above, I did double up on the salted caramel flavour. Not because I ADORE salted caramel anything (although yes, I do) but because there wasn’t an inspiring range of flavours to choose from so I had no choice but to double up.

Overall, the macarons were nice enough. Okay, so I would have liked a bit more ‘crunch’ when biting into the shell but I guess that’s what defrosting does to texture. I also would have liked the liquorice and strawberry marshmallow ones to taste less one-dimensional and while the pistachio one was great, it definitely wasn’t the best I’ve had. My favourite one was the vanilla, which was dotted with lovely black flecks of vanilla bean pods while the raspberry one had a lovely tang to it.

So would I go back again? Probably not as there are better macaron stores (Zumbo, La Belle Miette and Luxbite) that produce better-tasting macarons at more reasonable prices. The only reason I’d go back to Ladurée Sydney is if someone from Melbourne requests a box or if they introduce a new macaron flavour that I can’t resist trying. Having said that, I’d definitely be down to try the Paris store if I ever end up in Europe anytime soon.

Ladurée on Urbanspoon

11 Comments on Ladurée (Sydney, NSW)

  1. Corrie
    September 10, 2013 at 08:55 (12 months ago)

    To help with your memory $3.20 x 8 macarons = $25.60 (not that it really matters) however couldn’t they give a discount for a box of four for $12.00 or something similar…it does sound expensive for defrosted. However I too will be keeping my eyes open for them next time I am in Paris because as we all know everything always tastes better in Paris :-)

    Reply
  2. CCU
    September 10, 2013 at 09:22 (12 months ago)

    Mmm, they are so expensive and I love Zumbarons more anyway! But I would love to try them fresh in Paris :D

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

    Reply
  3. Hannah
    September 10, 2013 at 21:49 (12 months ago)

    The colleague IN HER HEAD.

    Reply
  4. Daisy@Nevertoosweet
    September 11, 2013 at 16:18 (12 months ago)

    Yes they’re definitely not cheap and not as good in terms of texture i found them either too soft or too hard last time I had them…so I agree La belle miette is much better :) And so glad they’re in Melbourne hehe!

    Reply
  5. Iron Chef Shellie
    September 22, 2013 at 16:37 (12 months ago)

    Glad I’m not missing out on much then!

    Reply
  6. Katherine
    December 9, 2013 at 11:05 (9 months ago)

    Hi – I’ve had laduree macarons in Paris, London and Sydney, to different degrees of success. I just think that macarons are so delicate that the process of freezing and shipping them takes that teensy edge of amazing away, which is enough to make them comparable or inferior to strong local products.

    French baking is a bit like that. Choux pastry, baguettes/bread, other pastry are best consumed within hours of baking. By the end of the day they’ve gone that wee bit soft/stale and lost the X-factor that elevates them to from good to A-MA-ZING.

    Meanwhile, have you tried Sydney’s Baroque Bistro? I rate their macarons. And their food…

    Reply
    • libishski
      December 11, 2013 at 11:17 (9 months ago)

      Hi Katherine,

      You’re absolutely right. It’s a shame how even the smallest change can turn a macaron from super-amazing to just okay. I haven’t been to Baroque Bistro but I just had a quick look at their menu and everything sounds amazing. Next time!

      Reply
      • Katherine
        December 11, 2013 at 11:22 (9 months ago)

        And the culinary to-do-list grows… ;)

        Reply
    • David
      June 21, 2014 at 16:33 (2 months ago)

      Oops! I misread the article. The frozen Ladurée are only for outside France! So it may be worth the trip to Paris after all.

      Reply

Leave a reply