Location: 780 Queen Street West, Toronto
Though I feel like the pastries at Nadege have gone a bit downhill since their expansion to multiple locations, I still like the place. And I can’t say no to their latest addition: ice cream (I can never say no to ice cream. Never).
They have a small ice cream shop right next to their original Queen Street location, serving classic scooped ice cream (not to be confused with the soft serve they’ve had for a while now).
There’s a bunch of really interesting looking flavours; I went with La Mancha, which is described as “honey, blackberry, saffron, biscuit.”
It’s good, though the ice cream itself is nothing too special. It’s a bit thin; it’s not nearly as rich or as creamy as it should be. But the flavour makes up for it. It’s got a delightfully subtle sweetness, with refreshing swirls of tart blackberry sauce and big cakey chunks.
I wish the blackberry sauce weren’t so icy and that the chunks weren’t so generous (my scoop was something like fifty percent biscuit and fifty percent ice cream), but I still enjoyed it. I’m keen to go back, if only to try out some of the other flavours; they were almost all really unique.
Location: 160 Baldwin Street, Toronto
I was still hungry after the horrifying abomination I was served at Kiss the Tiramisu; I couldn’t eat more than a third of it. So I went a couple of stores down to Little Pebbles, a great little Japanese cafe in Kensington Market.
They have the usual assortment of coffees to pick from, as well as a variety of French/Japanese-inspired baked goods. I went with the Strawberry Sakura Mont Blanc, which features an almond-infused crust, pastry cream, a whole strawberry, and strawberry mont blanc cream.
Maybe I was just happy to eat something that wasn’t disgusting, but I really enjoyed this. The nutty crust was tasty, the whole strawberry was sweet and ripe, and the mont blanc cream did a really great job of balancing the chestnut flavour you’d expect with something a bit fruitier.
The whole thing was quite subdued in its flavours, but it all worked really well. I’d definitely like to come back here and try some of their other offerings, because everything looked really good.