Best Macarons - 2012
Macarons, those glorious little cookies that look like an OCD pastry chef's re-envisioning of the hamburger as tiny French patisserie experiment, have become trendy. And unlike the rise of the cupcake, the macaron is something we greeted with great happiness and a kind of relief. Macarons are one of those pastries that, even if you're the kind of person who wakes before dawn to laminate dough, you'd really rather buy than make. And who has the cash these days to jet to Pierre Hermé's shop in Paris? The macarons that Sumi Chang creates in her Pasadena bakery, EuroPane, are classic iterations: brightly colored meringue cookie sandwiches made in all kinds of flavors — lemon, passion fruit, raspberry, blackberry, pistachio, hazelnut, mocha, coconut and the most popular and wildly addictive sea salt caramel. But one thing differentiates EuroPane's macarons from everybody else's: their size. Whereas most macarons measure about an inch and a half across, these are easily twice that. Chang says she makes them bigger because the larger surface area ensures that the cookies stay chewy on the inside. While this is certainly true, we like them because they are the one thing on earth that really deserves to be super-sized. Merci bien. 950 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena. (626) 577-1828 (no website).