Located: 1097 Rue St-Jean, Quebec City, QC G1R
Quebec City this weekend was cold. It was -10 to -12 C, with the wind, it feels like -19 and -20. It was absolutely freezing. I was wearing TWO pairs of pants and I was still cold. It's definitely not a winter vacation spot, I've learned my lesson...which is, ONLY go to Quebec City in the summer. With that said, we were there anyways, and it was very pretty and european there. If it wasn't as cold, we'd have a lot more fun wandering through the tiny streets and stores, beautiful old buildings and churches. I mean, we still had fun this weekend, however, we also had to take measures to not get frostbite. Vacations are better when you don't have to worry about body parts turning blue and possibly falling off. :-P
However, on our journey to warm back up from being out and about in the cold, we stumbled upon a french Cafe chain in Quebec called Paillard. They had the most amazing pasteries, and their gelato and sandwich stations looked really delicious as well. The place was packed full of french speaking locals, which is the first sign that the place is actually good and not a tourist trap. The prices were more then reasonable as they were larger, fresher, tastier and cheaper then Premiere Moisson in Central Station Montreal. I didn't know there was a patisserie that would be able to beat Premiere Moisson but Paillards did. Too bad it's in Quebec City and a good 3.5 hour train ride away.
Here is a review of all the wonderful pastries that we were able to fill our bellies with:
This is the BEST mille-feuille I've ever had. The vanilla custard cream was light, fresh and the perfect hint of sweetness. The pastry is so light, airy and flaky it's to die for, and the raspberry jam bottom layer adds the perfect tart contrast to this perfect dessert. We ate 2 of these in 2 days.
Oh how I wish this were available in Toronto, even though that would mean I would be eating these from breakfast to dinner time and be twice as big. Paillard definitely has one of the best flaky pastries I've ever had the pleasure to taste. The ground almond center was perfect, not too sweet, hint of almonds, and just so delicious. I purchased one for brunch, Nick had a bite, and he had to go buy one for himself, then I went back to purchase another one so I could eat it on the train. We ate 3 of these in day.
This was the very last Blueberry muffin they had, Nick had to point it out as the lady at the counter thought they were all gone. I can see why they would go so quickly. It was delicious, filled to the brim with blueberries. They are definitely not skimping on the ingredients here. :-)
Cranberry walnut cookies ($1.95 ea)
These were almost like a large shortbread round of cookie stuffed with cranberries and nuts. It was incredibly buttery, filling, and delicious. Nick had to buy 3 of these for the train. They were just as good the next day.
I could eat at Paillard's all day. Their breads also looks amazing, they have a Gelato, sandwich and soup station as well. If we had room in our stomachs after stuffing ourselves full of pastries we would've tried that. The quality is fresh, mindbogglingly amazingly delicious and place is packed full of locals. I can't wait to go back to Quebec City in the summer to eat here again. :-)