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COMPASS MAGAZINE > February 2015

Choux Choux: Exquisite desserts and breads at Le Mout's 'baby sister'

By Douglas Habecker
Translated by S. Ying

40, CunZhong St, 1F, West Dist
(04) 2378-2011
Hours: 11 am-8 pm
English menu.
Credit cards accepted.
No service charge.

Being named Asia's Best Female Chef in 2014 gained global fame for Chef Lanshu Chen and her flagship Taichung establishment, Le Mout Restaurant. However, quietly existing in the shadow (literally and figuratively) of that success is yet another of chef Chen's creations that showcases the things that she personally loves.

Located directly across the street from Le Mout, Choux Choux is a cozy, suitably French-looking gourmet shop filled with wonderful desserts and breads, mostly for take-out. However, a couple inside tables and one outside table also make it a place for lingering, perhaps over a cup of coffee or Russian/French Kusmi brand herbal tea and a sandwich or exquisite creation from Le Mout's Japanese-born, American-raised pastry chef Makito Hiratsuka, whose extensive international experience includes long stints in Spain.

When creating his various baked goods, Chef Hiratsuka, who makes all of Le Mout's bread here, uses top-end ingredients without any of the pre-mix or bread improvers popular with other bakeries. This means that his La Flute (larger baguette), for example, take 18 hours to rise.

Much like its Continental cousins, Choux Choux also offers flowers, wines and porcelain for sale, not to mention ready-to-eat take-home meals (in daily limited quantities) from Le Mout like Burgundy Braised Short-ribs (NT$290) or Home-made Rustique Pork Terrine (NT$150).

Note: Choux Choux will be closed Feb. 18 and 19, 2015 for the lunar new holiday.

Choux Choux Choux Choux Choux Choux
Left: Among other baked creations are the Croissant (NT$60), Hazelnut Glazed Croissant (NT$70) and Spiced Pineapple Danish (NT$70).
Medium: Over 20 types of freshly-baked breads here include the pictured La Flute (NT$100), Bourbon Vanilla Flute (NT$140) and Prunes and Macadamia Sourdough (NT$230).
Right: When savoring Choux Choux's Caramel Chocolate or Tieguanyin eclairs (NT$80 each), it's hard to stop with just one.

Choux Choux Choux Choux Choux Choux
Left: The unforgettably-named Eureka (NT$150) has an equally unforgettable mix of pistachio, fennel and green apple flavors.
Medium: Filled with strawberries, the MH Fruit Tart (NT$160) is a flavorful French-style delight.
Right: The Matcha Chestnut and Raspberry and Rose roll cakes (NT$250 each) go great with a cup of Kusmi-brand tea, like the pictured Anastasia (NT$140/pot).

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