Friday, November 19, 2010

C'est La Vie French Bakery & Cafe - A little bit of Paris on the Delaware

I’ve never been to Paris.  But, C’est La Vie French Bakery in New Hope, Pennsylvania is exactly what I imagine a french patisserie to be.

Situated at the end of a narrow alley off of South Main Street, C’est la Vie is a tiny shop with low ceilings and dark wood walls.  This was not my first visit, and each time I walk through the door I’m met with the familiar scent of freshly baked baguettes, fresh brewed coffee and sugary sweets. 

As I stand in front of the glass enclosed case full of glistening fruit tartelettes, cookies, pastries, millefeuilles and gateau, I feel as though I have entered a fine jewelry shop, browsing for just the right gem in the perfect setting. But these rubies and sapphires were strawberries and blueberries nestled in a topaz crust.  They were truly treasures, not to be worn–to be eaten.  

Hmm...what will it be?  The decision would be difficult. After all, I couldn’t afford one of each. (I’m talking about my hips not my pocketbook.) Everything looked so beautiful.   

I finally choose the pain au chocolat.  One bite and I know this yummy treat will be worth every extra mile on the treadmill.  The pastry is buttery and flaky with just the right amount of dark chocolate.  I've chosen well.  Next time I’ll try a Napoleon, or an eclair or a chocolate cookie...maybe the quiche...

The authentic Paris vibe found in both the setting and the pastries is the work of proprietor Joel Vitart. Chef Joel, who learned his trade in Paris, spent years tweaking recipes to replicate the flaky, sweet confections available along the Seine. According to his wife and business partner Jane, Joel believes "when you walk through the doors of C'est La Vie, you're walking into France."
C’est La Vie offers a wide assortment of pastries, cakes, cookies, brioche and breads as well as savory quiches and sandwiches.  When weather permits, their river-view patio is a great spot to “manger” and watch night sky sparkle.
C’est la Vie French Bakery is the perfect place to relax, sip cafe au lait, nibble on a Madeleine and pretend to read Proust.

C'est La Vie French Bakery & Cafe
20 South Main Street
New Hope, PA 18938
(215) 862-1956
Tues 7:30am-2pm
Wed&Thurs 7:30am-5pm
Fri.-Sun., 7:30am-6pm

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