Les lapins Ladurée: Easter has never been sweeter

Posted on 01/04/2018 by Eileen Schuch
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Ladurée Easter Bunny

This year, Easter is especially sweet because Ladurée surprised us with an Easter collection that makes our heart melt like chocolate in the sun! Cute, playful creations full of poesy… a nod to Japan where Claire Heitzler, Laduree’s new Head of Patisserie Creation, practiced for three years.

Last spring, Joe Milk and Lolly Pink already enchanted lovers of Ladurée. Now the family has grown! Baby bunnies Jules, Arthur, Lili, Elsa, Lea, Felix, Theo, and Tim are the fruit of their love and Claire’s imagination. Made of dark chocolate, milk chocolate or white chocolate, all members of this bunny family do not only look super cute, they also taste extremely delicious!

But that’s not all! For the first time and for Easter only, Ladurée proposes a mix of chocolates that is inspired by six iconic biscuits: Macaron, Ispahan, Eclair au chocolat, Religieuse, Tarte au citron and Saint-Honoré. Made of dark chocolate, milk chocolate, white chocolate and Dulcey chocolate, this little treat is absolutely unique. The pinnacle of the Easter collection is the Chocolate garden though. This exceptional piece features Joe Milk and his baby bunnies in a decor of 100% chocolate. Almost to cute to eat!

Another of Claire’s creations is this Water Lily Raspberry Verbena Entremet. The delicate white chocolate shell contains a delicious almond dacquoise, a scoop of verbena, raspberry jam and pieces of fresh raspberries – a flowery pastry that celebrates spring. Much like the pastel surprise gift box with its pretty Easter bow. It contains Ladurée’s signature macarons with notes of chocolate and raspberries. There even is a macaron that was specially created for Easter: the raspberry chocolate macaron filled with 64% Manjari chocolate ganache and raspberry.

At the end of last year, our Bombom Bijoux Girls, Ana and Jess, had the pleasure to meet Claire Heitzler in Geneva. But who exactly is this talented lady? Zoom:

Laduree’s new Head of Patisserie Creation is an award-winning female chef. Her stellar career began with general chef training during which she quickly discovered that she had a particular passion for pastry. To perfect her skills, she joined the team at the prestigious “Troisgros” in Roanne as a commis patisserie chef. She then moved on to work with Georges Blanc in Vonnas, then Jean-Paul Abadie in Lorient.

Her insatiable desire for exploration pushed her to discover new shores, and in 2003 she became the patisserie chef at l’Oranger, London. In 2004, Alain Ducasse contacted her with an offer – patisserie chef in his new restaurant Beige Alain Ducasse Tokyo in Japan. Claire then worked at the Park Hyatt in Dubai before she returned to Paris in 2009 where she worked as patisserie chef alongside Michel Roth at the legendary Ritz Hotel. In 2010 she became the head patisserie chef at Lasserre, managing a team of 6 other chefs.

In 2012, Claire Heitzler was selected “Patisserie Chef of the Year” by Le Chef. In 2013 she was awarded “Patisserie Chef of the Year” by Gault-Millau. In 2014, Claire received the Relais Desserts’ “Award of Excellence for the Best Patisserie Chef”.

laduree claire heitzler getty images

 

Upon her clients’ frequent request, Claire created a bold new menu: her “sugar sequence”. It is a new vision of patisserie, a menu that comprised a complete meal dedicated to desserts, respecting the traditional format, using fruit and vegetables, and focusing above all on the natural sugars of her products. This was a trailblazing idea in gourmet cooking and her menu acclaimed by press and critics alike.

Since 2016, Claire shaped the pastry creations at Ladurée. Today, however, she wants to pursue new personal projects and the Maison is preparing for a creative reorientation. Although Claire will leave her workshop she will continue to follow the evolution at Ladurée playing a key role in its transition. Ladurée’s ambition is to promote diversity of patisserie talents. While the Maison will continue to enhance its classics, the ambassadors of French-style gourmet “savoir-faire” – be that recognized chefs or the budding talents of the future – will in future have the opportunity to express their creativity to the full, taking turns to rewrite a chapter of the story of Ladurée.

We are impatient to discover both the evolution of Ladurée and Claire’s own projects. One thing is certain: while her creations are delicate and sweet, Claire Heitzler is a force to be reckoned with: a trailblazer, a mover and shaper in her industry. Bravo for her prowess and foresight! Here is a lovely interview with her by L’Académie du Goût, in French.

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