Looking back, I can’t fathom myself deciding to visit Pierre Herme, among many possible desserts destinations. There was a reason: maybe because it was where the patissier of Maison M.O. once lead the kitchen, or I was trying to find something works as a reference. I don’t know. The communication didn’t help justifying my decision as it was very frustrating. I never assume that English works well in Japan based on all the previous experiences, but somehow believe that this kind of foreign flagship store could be a rare exception.
No, I was wrong: I wanted to order Champagne set, but they didn’t accept the order as it seemed some element of it was out of stock. A female staff was explaining something over and over, but it wasn’t clear what was really missing. The male staff was even worse: he basically avoided me when finding out I wasn’t capable of speaking Japanese and wanted to communicate in English, with hiding behind counter and kept ignoring my eye contact. After speaking with other female staff (with same language capability with others, unfortunately), I concluded that some cakes belongs to the set were out of stock. Still, it was just a guess.
After such a painful deliberation with all those botched communications, I settled for Coupe Glacee Ispahan and Mille-feuille, along with some coffee tea. The former isn’t really different than something I had in Cafe Dior in Seoul, maybe with a little more clarity and definition. After the first spoonful, I despise myself making such a mindless decision. I still don’t know why I chose it. Maybe I was totally numb after all the joyful communications. I am not claiming that it was bad dessert; it was OK, but my choice was just bad.
Fortunately, the latter, Mille-feuille was a totally different story. Mille-feuille has become more generic grammar of desserts nowadays, but theirs still offer something to savor and learn. I cannot remember all the components and their dynamics as same mindlessness haunted me throughout the whole experience, but the overall picture is still very explicit. Each and every components were very strong in every aspects of flavor, but somehow I didn’t feel overwhelmed at all. As tense as it was, the Mille-feuille was like an equilibrium about to explode.
The beverages weren’t that impressive, and neither were the chocolates. Also I felt a very subtle (or not?) discord between all the impressive decors and the somewhat muted and dull demeanor of the staffs. I don’t know I would want to revisit but Mille-feuille was surely some kind of reference sometimes I look for.