Henri Charpentier @ Dempsey Hill – A Preview
It has been several months since the news of the renowned Japanese patisserie Henri Charpentier (HC) has finally set up a dessert salon here in Singapore, making it their first overseas outlet outside Japan. Truth be told, that came as a surprise for me as most others would have made their presence in other Asia-Pacific regions, like Hong Kong or Taipei where the pastry scene is somewhat more vibrant than us here. Perhaps the pastry and dessert markets in these places are somewhat saturated already, making it more competitive to venture into. Perhaps HC saw the potential in establishing a joint or two here in this relatively untouched land. Whichever the case, a new player in the market is always welcomed. Hopefully the coming of HC signifies the escalation of our local pastry scene onto the next level. But that remains to be seen.
囍有此梨 Poached Pear in Aged Osmanthus Wine
Poached Pears in Red Wine is a signature french fruit dessert which is both easy to prepare and delcious to enjoy. Better known as “Poires Au Vin Rouge“, this french classic uses port or some other full-bodied fortified wine as a base for a thick syrup enriched with spices. Its origins can be traced back to another French dessert named Poire belle Hélène created by by Auguste Escoffier, named after the operetta La belle Hélène by Jacques Offenbach. Incidentally creating desserts after popular themes or famous people seemed to be Escoffier’s
favorite past-time speciality as he also gave us Pêche Melba, after the famous Australia prima donna. Jacky Wu of 囍宴 Xi Yan, a restaurant chain in Hong Kong and Singapore specialising in the concept of “private dining” decidedly gave this dish an Oriental twist with their restaurant signature “囍有此梨” 桂花陳酒燴啤梨 Poached Pear in Aged Osmanthus Wine, with the incorporation of 桂花陈酒 aged osmanthus wine from China. The palate experience provided is quite different from that of the original Poires Au Vin Rouge but no less enjoyable!
ルージュ Rouge is a piece which I made for EAT AND MAKE TAU HUAY DAY that took place more than 1 month back, which I’d initiated in response to the Diner en Blanc Singapore saga. Forgiven but not forgotten. The intention then was to “atasified”, i.e. make more haute, a simple dessert like the asian soya bean pudding. The word on the street then was, ” if panna cotta could make it onto the tableaux blanc, why not tau huay?” So naturally, the first image I have in my head is naturally a rather “cliche” version of tau huay disguised as panna cotta, supported by various “coulified” and macerated berries spiked with liqueur. Surely this would be worthy of Diner en Blanc!