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Review Posted on Friday, July 11, 2014
I stopped by Les Halles to do a little compare and contrast between two desserts that can be found making their way out of the patisserie and into the dining area on many guest's trays. You can't go wrong with either the Cafe Liegeois (combining coffee, chocolate and cream mousse), or the Framboise which combines a raspberry mousse on top of a chocolate cake base. Both are trés yummy, and both manage to keep their main ingredient (coffee and raspberry respectively) in the forefront. Not always an easy task when chocolate is also in the mix.
Topping the Cafe Liegeois is an almost frozen in time, latte-like foam which is mostly appreciated by anyone that's tried creating a light foamy topping on anything. Topping off the Framboise is a really punchy and seedy raspberry sauce. Too many "berry" desserts rely on some sugared up, artificial raspberry flavor mix to get their point across, but this Framboise is not one of them. I would love a healthy does of this raspberry compote on top of a hot fluffy Belgium waffle. Alas, the Germany and French pavilions are just too far away from one another. Sigh.
The dining room itself, is quite pretty, but because there are just so many great treats at Les Halles, it remains very busy, and quite loud. There is some mixed seating outdoors, but those tables go just as fast as the indoor seats do. You may have to do a bit of table trolling before you find a seat.
At $5.50 a piece (px 07/2014), the Cafe Liegeois and Framboise are not cheep desserts, but there is a bit of hands-on work to make both of these little gems. Calories, sugar, and the difficult to obtain "punch" on the Framboise are not inexpensive. I could save a bunch, and just not get any dessert, so if I'm going to do it... I'd rather spend a bit more and get a delicious, great dessert. The trick at Les Halles is, stopping at just one!