Today is the first day of September, which means I’ve left Shanghai approximately 2 months ago. I was only there for 5 months in total, but I would call it my 3rd home now. If not for the environmental & health concerns, I would definitely consider going back for longer term. It is modern, it is a metropolitan, it is fast paced, everything there is efficient and it is international enough (while retaining the fundamental Shanghainese culture).
Visiting Aimé Patisserie was a pure coincidence. My boyfriend and I were just walking around Middle Huai Hai Road in the Xuhui District (near IAPM) on our final full day in Shanghai. When we were about to leave the area for our dinner booking, I noticed this eye catching patisserie that looked really promising (think: clean, white gift box-like shop amongst the colourful shops in that district) and we immediately made a mental note to visit after dinner.
Usually, I walk straight to the display case because it is honestly the only thing that concerns me. However, the renovation of Aimé is so different & refreshing that I was pleasantly surprised everywhere I looked.
We couldn’t go past the cute looking cut chocolate pralines – the mini macarons are coloured in accordance to the flavour of the pralines. Initially I found this idea quite cute, however, when my boyfriend and I tried to cut the chocolates up to share, we found that the macarons didn’t really add any flavour, but instead it was just a bit too hard to be on a praline chocolate.
Other than the enrobing chocolate being a bit too thick, I really liked this flavour. It was very intense (just the way dark chocolates should be), and it had a really pleasant mouthfeel – rich & creamy.
I love a nice caramel flavour that tastes of burnt sugar but isn’t too sweet. However, unlike the dark chocolate praline, because this was meant to be caramel flavoured, I personally felt that the (too) thick enrobing chocolate ruined the flavour for me.
This was one of the better French inspired petit gateaux (cake slice) that I had in Shanghai. It had a lot of different hazelnut based flavours and textures, which made the eating experience really rich. There were nuts, feulletine (wafer), and some impressively crispy & thin tempered milk chocolate. If I were to pinpoint something that I didn’t like, it would have to be the bottom hazelnut sponge that was a bit too thick, which meant that it wasn’t in sync with the rest of the layers.
This was a complimentary slice of chocolate cake. They gave us this slice of cake while we were in the middle of demolishing everything else and oh my goodness, the best things are free! This was a very rich chocolate cake consisting of milk and dark chocolate mousse. There were also some cocoa nibs which added some texture and bitterness. Excellent!
We decided to get one more item at the end of our binge session because we were quite pleased with our experience BUT I wished we hadn’t. I decided to get the raspberry dark chocolate macaron. Aesthetically pleasing but otherwise a ‘bad’ macaron. For me, macarons are about the shell as well as the filling, which is why my heart sank when the macaron shell pretty much collapsed the moment I cut this in half. It was a good ganache, but not a good macaron.
Not a bad way to end our final full day in Shanghai though. I will definitely revisit if I have the chance again. Definitely!!
1008 Middle Huai Hai Road, Xu Hui District (close to South Shaanxi Road)
徐汇区 淮海中路1008号(近陕西南路 襄阳公园)