I have a to give a big shout out to my friend Liz who told me about Croissunday (#croissunday), also known as Croissant Sunday, that happened over the weekend. This is the second year that NADÈGE Patisserie has done Croissunday where specialty croissant flavours are available for one day only.
I have been a huge fan of NADÈGE ever since I returned from a Paris vacation and was in search of decent croissants and macarons in Toronto. I can honestly say that their croissants and macarons are as good the ones I had in Paris (I would even go as far to say that the macarons are as good as the iconic Ladurée macarons). But chef Nadège Nourian is a fourth generation pastry chef and it’s obviously in her blood (she also sources the right ingredients).
Not wanting to miss out on this event, I called the store a few days before to see if I could pre-order one of each flavour (no such luck) but they did recommended that I come earlier vs. later because they had a tendency to sell out. They weren’t kidding.
When I arrived at their Rosedale location on 10 am on Sunday morning (just an hour after opening) they were already sold out of certain flavours. Here is a list of the 15 flavours that were available on Croissunday:
- Carrot cake with hazelnuts
- Pecan pie
- Rye & ginger
- Bellwoods brewery
- Squid ink & yuzu (a type of Japanese citrus fruit that tastes similar to grapefruit)
- Arugula & goat Cheese
- Hibiscus & raspberry
- Lemon meringue*
- Chestnut & cassis*
- Bacon & maple*
- Rocky road*
* Sold out by the time I arrived
Although some of the flavours were already sold out, I did manage to get nine of the other special flavours. I have to say, that Nadege really outdid herself this year. The croissants this year looked even more amazing that the flavours from last year’s Croissunday.
The croissants for Croissunday cost a little more ($3.50/each) than the regular croissants ($3.20/each). The special flavours all had distinguishing visual characteristics (so you could tell them apart) with unique flavoured fillings. Some flavours worked better than others. My personal favourite was the hisbicus raspberry croissant. The raspberry filling reminded me of a raspberry filled donut but in flaky pastry instead. I also liked the arugula & goat cheese flavour despite its green colour which threw me off at first. This savoury croissant tasted like a goat cheese and arugula puff pastry hors d’oeuvre (which it pretty much was but in croissant form).
I wasn’t a fan of the squid ink & yuzu flavour, ginger & rye or carrot cake croissants. Their flavours weren’t as pronounced. I found the squid ink croissant a bit doughy and felt like the carrot cake could have had more cream cheese icing. I also tried the chocolate croissant because it had these cool dark stripes on the outside (funkier looking than a typical pain au chocolate) however, I still prefer the traditional pain au chocolate (better chocolate-to-pastry ratio). The pecan pie croissant wasn’t bad either but pecan pie is already a little too sweet for my taste buds and so was the croissant.
However, I have to say that if anyone can take a step away from tradition and pull it off, it’s NADÈGE. I can’t wait until next year to see what cool and interesting flavours they come up with. But I’ll have to wake up a little earlier to make sure I get there right when doors open (unless they do pre-orders).