The French Fancies
Coffee, tea, cakes and recipes from a French childhood in this new home made delicatessen.
French treats for the young and young at heart
Reviewed by Irene Brown
Tuesday, July 12, 2011 - 12:32am
In a previous life, the low level property that is 42 London Street was a charming toy shop. While it is always sad to see creative independent businesses close, it looks as though the spirit of that magical place has stayed in the walls and helped imbue the new arrival in Broughton Village, The French Fancies, with some of its child centred charm. The cupcake coat hooks at child level and a fairy tale-like pink fireplace immediately welcome the young and young-at –heart.
This is the enterprise of Lyon couple, Bérangère and Thomas, who are bringing another little bit of France to the area by opening a café that provides breakfast, brunch, lunch and some gorgeous cakes and pastries and a extensive personalised tea menu by Master Tea Blender, Alex Probyn. The menu tells the reader that the recipes are family ones that have been developed by Thomas, the head chef, who had practised his craft in a Lyon restaurant.
We sat in the back room which, although it has a toy box and play area has a salon feel with books on the shelves and beautiful comfy chairs, two of which look out on to the ‘secret garden’ at the back. I can vouch for the standard of the espresso coffee and the apricot tartlet that was the probably the most juicy I‘ve ever tasted! My chum enjoyed a glass of rich hot chocolate and equally rich chocolate cup cake but if that’s not your taste, there was a case full of raspberry and strawberry tarts calling ‘Eat me’ (in French of course!)
As well as these delights, the shop offers for sale sausages made by Thomas’ uncle, olive oil, jams and marmalade. There are delightful knick-knacks too made by Bé – flowered lollipops, gift tags and cards. It’s hard to choose a pièce de resistance among these Gallic treats, but the fabulous tea cosies in all shapes, sizes and designs made by knitted by Thomas’ Mum are hard to resist.
Bienvenue à Broughton!