Macarons – a French confection that consists of a meringue cookie-like outer layer with a creamy filling. Fragile and delicate, but chewy and creamy once bitten into. They are made in various flavors and colors. I’ve had them in Caramel, mocha, chocolate, vanilla bean, pistachio, and Rasberry lemon.
Out here in Vegas, getting from point A to point B is a mission. Las Vegans will tell you, oh it’s just 15 minutes away, when really, they’re not including city and freeway traffic. They really mean 30-45 minutes away. I have not found any French macarons in local bakeries in my area. There is one place, but she only takes orders. The owner told me they were small quarter sized French macarons at $17 a dozen. No, thank you.
Vegas is filled with tons of high end boutique like bake shops inside casinos. With their over priced goods, their over the top beautiful displays of desserts still seem to draw customers. I’m a small town girl, where I’m used to a delicious red velvet cupcake for $1.50. Inside these casino bakeries, you can expect to pay nearly $5 for a cupcake. Taste being mediocre or less than expected due to the price you pay.
Jean Philippe Patisserie for example, located inside of Aria and another in Bellagio. The whole store presentation is so attractive and all the goodies are well displayed. Of course, expensive, but what do you expect?! Vegas + strip + high end casino + eye candy = still in business. Despite the good reviews about this place, or how great everything “looks”, their French macarons were a bit of disappointment. Especially since I made it a point to buy them there and getting there being a mission and a half. They weren’t even showcased in their front display. Instead, they were pre-boxed and on the shelves. Not that it’s a bad thing, because I understand Macarons make good gifts. Buuuut, they were literally quarter sized and only 8 pieces were $17. Right away, I was turned off. By the amount they had on the shelves, I may not have been the only reluctant customer.
By the size, amount, and price of these at Jean Philippe, I didn’t buy and probably won’t in the future. But by all means, if ever you make it in there someday, and want to try, go for it. Don’t let this stop you lol.
Another place of disappointment for their macarons is the Sugar Factory. The one inside of Planet Hollywood to be exact. In my over exaggerated gasp of excitement, I bought a few. Yuck, yuck, and eww. They were about the size of a silver dollar or even smaller. They lacked the delicate crisp and chewy center because it was so hard, it had a stale kind of crunch, and the flavors were struggling to be apparent. I don’t remember the price, probably around $2 or so each. Ugh, never again. I used to have a photo of it on my iPhone, but after being so disgusted by it, deleting them was relevant.
Lastly, my favorite french macaron spot so far in Vegas is Bouchon Bakery inside of the Venetian. I would say “I would drive here all the time”, but I have yet to conquer driving to the strip alone. Haven’t done that since circa 2005 lol. Another blog explanation in the future, perhaps. So, Jerald will take me there every so often.
At $3.50 a piece or a pack of 6 for $17 or $18, every bite is worth the mission getting there. Through the 15 N traffic, the crazy strip traffic, finding parking, getting through the casino crowd, getting to the casino level, and in line for these bad girls. All worth it! They are huuuge, too. Literally the size of my palms. They are macaron perfection! The right kind of fragile crisp, the chewiness from the cake like inner cookie meeting the delicious creamy filling. The sweetness is just right. Not underwhelmed and not overbearing. Even my kids enjoy them!