Desserts. One of those words that can conjure up images of all sorts of luscious sweet indulgences. A word that can put a smile on a crying child and brighten up the day of a heartbroken soul. I have a confession to make. I’m a sucker for a pretty dessert, even though I don’t have that much of a sweet tooth. Yuye might argue otherwise because I tend to want to order dessert all the time but when I’m hungry, I’d prefer to eat a savoury dish. With that said, whenever I see a good looking dessert I just can’t seem to refuse it. This impulsive behaviour has unfortunately caused many an upset stomach and an unhappy Yuye.
After reading so much about the highly acclaimed and immensely popular LuxBite, I have joined the bandwagon and visited the dessert oriented cafe tucked away on busy Toorak Rd in South Yarra last Thursday. The slogan on the door said ‘Life is uncertain, eat dessert first’. I couldn’t agree more. Never know when that macaron you’ve been wanting to get will sell out or even worse, gets wiped off the menu entirely! When you feel like it, just go for it, or so that’s how I convince myself to order all that I want to order. My friend Rachel, who’s one of the talented dessert chefs working at LuxBite, doesn’t know about my slight lack of sweet tooth. Lets keep this hush hush because I don’t want her to judge me. It doesn’t mean I don’t like desserts!
The interior of the cafe is comfy although small and has an air of freshness and excitement brought about by all the colours and buzz.
I love LuxBite’s slightly cheeky and playful take on desserts which is reflected in the names and descriptions of the little devils sitting behind that glass wall. I also love the beautiful colours of the macarons and huge variety, 16 to be precise, of flavours to choose from. Watch out because the popular flavours sell out quickly!
As Yuye has an even lesser sweet tooth than me, I thought getting something not so rich was a good idea. I decided on the tea set for 2. With this $42 set we got 3 small sandwich fingers, 2 desserts, 4 macarons and 2 drinks.
I got an Orchid Vanilla tea which was faintly fragrant with vanilla. It was lucky that I had done my homework and read up on LuxBite beforehand from other blogs such as Iron Chef Shellie and learnt that the tea bag in fact goes into the tea pot. I almost forgot about this and was stopped by Yuye just before I could make that embarrassing mistake. I loved how the leaf stuck out of that little opening in the pot, it’s the cutest thing ever.
Yuye ordered a boring but very lovely latte which was perfectly smooth and frothy. Coffee (with no sugar) goes so well with a sweet dessert in my opinion, probably more so than tea, although tea is better for cleansing the palate, ready for the next course.
We didn’t get a choice of sandwiches. The three flavours that were served were melted cheese and Veggiemite, smoked salmon and egg. Although not that complex or exciting, the flavours were well balanced and tasty.
We had a choice of two desserts from the glass case and purely won over by the looks and my love of watermelons, the first to be chosen was the Meringue Monster, one of the newer members of the LuxBite dessert family. To my surprise, it was so light and smooth that I seriously could have eaten this all day. It was intricately presented and totally sexy, I don’t think I’ve ever had a dessert that was better than this. If you like meringue or watermelon or desserts full stop, this is the thing for you. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.
Yuye pointed out that this dessert would be perfect in summer because it was not overly sweet or sticky and it was very fruity. As you can see, it’s made up of a layer of meringue on the outside topped with dried strawberry powder and the inside is a silky smooth half watermelon half strawberry flavoured mousse with a small fluffy layer of cake at the bottom. There is absolutely no chocolate in it so if you’re a mad chocolate fan then the second dessert is more for you.
The second dessert was recommended to me by my good friend Rachel who greeted us from the kitchen. It’s called The E.T. consisting of dark chocolate mousse filled with salted caramel and topped with chocolate covered caramel popcorn. I have no idea why it’s called the E.T., I mean, it doesn’t really look like an alien to me? Either way, it was chocolate heaven.
A lot richer than the Meringue Monster but still light enough for us to enjoy immensely, the perfect harmony of salted popcorns and ready to melt chocolate mousse was just to die for. I did find that the salted popcorns were a little hard to eat with a fork because every time I tried to pierce one, the chocolate mousse caves in a little more. In the end I just grabbed them with my fingers which worked out quite well.
The macarons that I chose to have on the plate were Kaya Toast, Sicilian Pistachio, Peanut Butter & Jelly and Mandarin and Saffron. They were really only for display purposes as we were too full to finish them off so got them takeaway when we were done.
I also bought the remaining flavours with one doubled up (because the awesome watermelon and yoghurt was sold out!) to make a total of 16 in the box. I thought I’d try fooling all you readers by throwing in their rock solid display watermelon macaron (which I actually took photos of) but thought that it’s just being unprofessional. The below box is what I took home, as you can see, the one at the bottom left is a doubled up Creme Brulee. Oh the sadness is overwhelming.
From top right down the flavours are: Kaya Toast, Rose and Lychee, Salted Caramel, Choc Freckles, Kaffir Lime, Passionfruit, Choc Cherry and Toby’s Mocha.
From top left down: Heilala Vanilla Creme Brulee, Mandarin & Saffron, O-o-Oreo, Strawberry Cream, Sicilian Pistachio, Peanut Butter & Jelly, Raspberry and White Chocolate and (sadly) another Heilala Vanilla Creme Brulee.
My favourite has got to be kaya toast. For those of you who don’t know, kaya is a Malaysian coconut flavoured jam which means this macaron is really coconut flavoured. Apparently LuxBite makes their own kaya jam so don’t even think about asking where you can buy it from like what I wanted to do. Maybe LuxBite should sell kaya jam jars on the side? I’d be one of the first to jump at that idea! All the other macarons were fantastic, most were not overly sweet which can be a drawback and the blend of flavours were superb, especially the mocha, peanut butter & jelly and o-o-oreo. I wasn’t too sold on the rose & lychee though because I thought the rose was a bit overpowering. It just needed a little toning down and a bit more of the lychee flavour.
The missing macaron annoyed me a little because I couldn’t complete my set of 16. My solution for this was to visit LuxBite a second time a week later and this time to my utter joy, they had an abundance of the watermelon flavour. I felt a bit stupid just ordering one single takeaway macaron so after some agonising thought, Yuye moved his car and we sat down to enjoy yet another dessert filled afternoon. It was totally his mistake for leaving me in charge of ordering because my gluttonous nature joyfully took over and I ended up ordering 2 desserts, 2 macarons (watermelon of course and kaya toast because I loved it so much), a tea and a coffee. This was just moments after we had finished a big 7 course Thai lunch! To top it off, I ordered reasonably sweet and heavy desserts. Boy Yuye wasn’t happy. Hey, it’s all for the love of sweets and all in the name of research for the blog. Ahem.
The watermelon & yoghurt macaron turned out to be a hit! No wonder it was sold out. The filling in the middle is the same flavour as the Meringue Monster so that’s why it was so good. It’s one of the more festive looking macarons as well and made me feel like it was almost Christmas. I love the black sesame seeds on top which actually made it look like watermelon!
I realised that I basically got 2 small and 2 big macarons since the two desserts I got were just very large macarons with filling. The first one was the popular Supersized Love. I loved how it looked and couldn’t resist ordering it this time.
The middle is full of chocolate fudge covered in nuts and filled with a light and delicious hazelnut mousse. If the entire dessert is filled with that rich and dense fudge, I don’t think I could have finished it but the hazelnut mousse made it so much more refined and gentle. It took us effort but we finished it in the end. Triumph was with us.
The second big macaron was the Oriental Love which is a coconut macaron filled with pineapple curd, pandan cream, caramelised banana and peanut brittle. It’s a very Malaysian twist to the traditional French dessert which actually worked out quite well.
The pineapple curd in the middle acted as a harmoniser between all the sweet flavours as it was sour and light. None of the flavours were overpowering, yet I could distinctly taste every single element perfectly. I think I would have enjoyed this a lot more though if I wasn’t being greedy and ordered so much. It might not look like much to you but those oversized macarons were really big!
For drinks I got another latte (same as last time) and a Belgian mint tea. I loved the tea. The mintiness made the dense go away and somehow cleaned my stomach so I could fit in a few more bites.
I would totally go back to LuxBite for another good dessert session, even at the risk of over-ordering again. Oh I also heard that they’re working on some new additions to the dessert family yet again. I can’t wait to see what’s going on that already wonderfully sinful and not-so-good-for-the-waistline menu!
Phone: (03) 9867 5888
38 Toorak Rd, South Yarra 3141