It happens to the best of us. We’re perusing an exquisite menu and get stuck drooling on the back page, desserts.Well now you can enjoy the sweeter things in life for first course and every course thereafter at Paris’s first gastronomic dessert-only bar, Dessance. When you think about it, does it really surprise you that one of the gastronomic capitals of the world has yet again excelled in the sweets department? But this is no ordinary sugar coated heaven, this is dessert with a difference.
The name Dessence is a neologism that combines ‘dessert’ with the French word for birth, ‘naissance’, pretty neat, huh? The establishment which recently opened in a 17th-century townhouse in the city’s Marais district is the work of French restaurateur Philippe Baranes. With a philosophy surrounding ‘rethinking the conventions of a meal’, Baranes has interestingly created a menu that doesn’t run toward pastries, cakes and tarts that a desserts-only concept might imply, So you can forget about ordering a macaron or croissant. Instead the bar offers a small but intriguing collection of dishes that can be eaten as both desserts and main courses. Yes, you can legitimately eat dessert for dinner! Next plane to Paris, si vous plais! Items may include a surprising combination of violet-colored vitelotte potato purée with raw and poached apples, arugula and marjoram granité. What a flavour sensation!
Baranes prides his creations on not being to loaded with sugar, cream and butter, “Sugar quickly sates the appetite, so it has to be used with moderation.” he says. Instead, he works with fruit, vegetables and fresh herbs to create flavor and texture. “Freshness and varying tones of acidity are very important, too,” he adds.
With all that said, how could you possibly choose what to have? Well sources say the best way to appreciate these futuristic sweets is to order the “Carte Blanche” menu — which includes an appetizer, four desserts and the drink pairings are offered with each course. This allows the diner to discover the fascinating logic of these creations, which gradually become sweeter over the course of a meal.
This is certainly going on my foodie bucket list, who’s coming with me?