Gorge on delectable gateaux at Franziska's patisserie in Kolkata
Located at Russell Street, near Park Street, Patisserie by Franziska is a new bakery in town which specialises in French pastry. The store opened in June this year and has taken the city by storm with its authentic tasting éclairs, tarts and mousse. Franziska, the owner, is from Bavaria, Germany and came to India three years ago. Personal reasons brought her to India, but she was always passionate about baking.
She learnt the basics from her grandmother and also attended plenty of master classes, along with her own research to bring in innovation and authenticity. “There is something very relaxing about the process. You have to be very precise and concentrated — if you are not — the dish is going to fail. Precision is the key,” she says.
So what got her into starting this cake shop? “When I moved here in 2015, I realised that there weren’t a lot of good quality pastry shops . There is a lot of decoration and food colouring but people here don’t use good quality chocolate — they just use chocolate compounds and no fresh fruits. Where I come from, in Germany — we use the best ingredients to make a cake, not canned stuff,” she adds.
Every item on display boasts of its individual taste and the menu is very seasonal and changes every four weeks. “We try to keep the decoration interesting and the textures intact — there should be always something crunchy, something smooth- it should be something exciting. What looks good and tastes appealing goes on the menu,” says the entrepreneur.
Among the Christmas specials, there is Santa’s Hat (made of fresh strawberry compote, coconut soufflé and vanilla mousse), Forest Noir (with imported cherries,brandy and vanilla bean) and the Coffee Noisette Gateau, comprising coffee and caramelised hazelnut. For those who want non-chocolatey options, the Fig and Pistachio tart is made up of vanilla cream and fruits.
But that is not all; they are going to bring in the traditional Christmas plum cake and other items with Christmas ornaments, mild wine, cherry and spices. There are some eggless offerings too, such as the Classic Cheesecake, which uses vanilla, lemon, agar agar, fresh fruits and the Belgian Dark Chocolate Tart. A 300 gm chocolate kit on offer, with instructions for preparations, is for those who like hot chocolate at home.
For others, there are Lemon Madeleines, Hazel Nut Praline Cookies and gluten-free macarons, made with almond flour. Also look out for a Banana Walnut Loaf, Mixed Berry and Lemon Loaf and Hazelnut Praline Loaf, the latter is seasoned with the paste of caramelised hazelnuts.
While not too keen about going for home delivery, as “they deliver by bike and the pastries get crushed during the delivery,” she points out, she does have other dreams for expansion. This is apart from catering to corporates and weddings. Lika a bigger café, with savoury choices and brunch on offer. “I like people coming out and having conversations. If you want to eat a good pastry, you have to make the effort to come out of the house,” Franziska avers. `
Rs 300 upwards for a slice.