I met Soraiya Nagree a few years back, when I interviewed her about The Kitchen Space, a commercial kitchen on the East side that she and her husband Azim own and rent out to local chefs. Soraiya also operates her own business, Luxe Sweets, out of the location, selling her amazing baked goods to coffee houses all over town. But as legend has it, her true dream, since she was a little girl on a big trip to Paris, had always been to open a French bakery.
On November 30, 2010, just as I was preparing to hide under the covers for a month, Soraiya realized her dream, opening La Pâtisserie by Luxe Sweets in South Austin, at 602 West Annie Street. She had no idea at the time that she was also making my dream come true by saving me airfare to France which, much as I'd love to go there every other weekend, in this economy?!! Sheesh-- it's more like every THIRD week, you know? Fortunately, now when I am jonesing for a chouquette or a brioche, or when I wish to fill my claw foot bathtub with macarons or pile delicate chocolat petit fours upon my throne, or simply feel an urge to inhale an eclair and chase it down with chocolat chaud or espresso so thick and strong that it will put (or remove-- depending on your current follicle situation) hair on various body parts-- well Soraiya's got me covered. She also provides croissants, almond croissants, pain au chocolat AND-- Get thee behind my ever-expanding derriere, Satan!!-- chocolat pistachio raspberry cake.
Even though I missed the November opening, the good news is that Soraiya held off on the media party until after the holidays. So last week, a few days after my birthday, as if IN HONOR of my birthday (please say it's so, Soraiya), Warren and Em and Bug and me headed on down to taste pretty much everything. Plus we brought some home. The shop is SO CUTE!! Mon Petit Cherie! Soraiya and Azim's son is SO CUTE!! My sugar buzz NOT SO CUTE!! But it did seem to amuse Warren to watch me attempt to speak the language, by which I do not mean French but my own native (allegedly) English. I mean buzzity-buzz-buzz-buzz....
I am not kidding when I say that I wake up now, every day, and imagine that I'll just run down and get "a few things" from La Pâtisserie. Seriously, thoughts of its beauty-- the place itself, and all those confection jewels in the shiny case, the lovely barristas in their lovely aprons-- cause me to drool anew. Deux pouce up! Waaaaay Up!
Okay, more pics, including a shot of their KIDS' area! Seeing a little place designated for the children, WELCOMING them even-- how this made my heart soar. Anybody remember the old Martin Brothers and that little play area they had for kids? I took Henry there all the time when he was tiny. So, yeah, LP has a nice little area for smaller pastry connoisseurs, replete with kids' books en Francais. Yay ouiiiiiiiiii!