IN PICTURES: French pastries meet prosecco at Septimos in Sandton

French bakery Patachou has partnered with Septimos to give the restaurant’s dessert menu a distinctly Parisian twist. Photo: eNCA/Andrea van Wyk
Buttery, chocolatey, almondey… any kind of croissant you could want. Photo: eNCA/Andrea van Wyk
An assortment of macarons (possibly the most perfect cookie ever invented) and fruit tartlets are available at Septimos. Photo: eNCA/Andrea van Wyk
There are many gluten free options available, like this devilishly good L’Intense – layers of French meringue and chocolate mousse encased in a thin, crisp layer of milk chocolate. Photo: eNCA/Andrea van Wyk
Le Karma are rich tarts that combine a crunchy and intensely-flavoured almond meringue with nougatine pieces, filled with smooth vanilla butter cream and raspberry jelly. Photo: eNCA/Andrea van Wyk
Like its name suggests, Le Paradis is a heavenly blend of crispy hazelnut biscuit, praline feuilletine, smooth chocolate mousse and milk chocolate whipping cream. Photo: eNCA/Andrea van Wyk
Le Fraicheur is a refreshing twist on regular cheesecake: a berry and lemon insert is finished with French-style cheese cake mousse. Photo: eNCA/Andrea van Wyk
What’s a pastry without some prosecco? Instead of a normal champagne breakfast, try Italy’s version of the dry white sparkling wine with your croissant or baguette. Photo: eNCA/Andrea van Wyk

JOHANNESBURG – A French affair in an Italian restaurant.

That is what lovers of perfect pastries and prosecco will find at Nelson Mandela Square’s Italian eatery, Septimos. The restaurant has partnered with the local patisserie, Patachou, to give its breakfast and dessert menus some extra bon vivant.

Patachou is not just another wannabe French pastry-shop in Jozi. It’s the real deal. It is French-owned and managed and the baking, too, is done by French hands (though the ingredients are all locally-sourced).

Hugues Panassié, one of the three directors of Patachou (which now has outlets or boutiques in Parktown North, Rivonia and Kyalami), explained that pastry is an integral part of French cuisine. “Patisserie is a key component of French culture. In France, you have so many patisserie schools… there is a transmission of ‘know-how’ through decades.”

“These are specific French recipes that are really unique. It is a passion transmitted through generations.”

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I dare anyone to find better, more buttery chocolate croissants, baguettes or macarons. The latter are pure perfection. It is near impossible to find a macaron in South Africa that isn’t dry, floury or too much like a biscuit. Patachou’s macarons rival those of any good Parisian patisserie, with the perfect amount of crunch on the outside, crumble on the inside and rich, smooth filling. I recommend the salted caramel.

There are a number of other decadent and delectable cakes and tarts you can order for dessert, from chocolate to custard to fruit. Sharing is recommended!


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