Super Strict Score [understand my S3]: 6.5
Pistachio + sour cherry: 6.5
In 1 word: location location location
Assortment: cakes & desserts [~30] | macarons | teacakes | pound cakes | chocolates | cookies
If at all, Shinjuku is known outside of Japan as the world’s busiest transport hub [more than 3.5 millions commuters through Shinjuku station/day]. As such, it is incredibly hustly & bustly & like most such environments doesn’t lend itself well to prime pastry establishments.
Good pâtisseries with cafés are especially rare finds, however, about a handful of wattwurmnashi worthy pâtisseries can be found in Shinjuku, of which La vie douce is one. It is within an easy walk from Shinjuku station [although closer to Shinjukugyoenmae station, or most of all Akebonobashi]. Their think tank, also with café seems to be in Yokohama which makes more sense rent wise.
The operation is owned & run by Shin Horie who approaches his pastry making in a musical sort of way, likening the orchestrating of his business to exactly that [an orchestra]. Less artistic but rather corporate like are the listing of a concept, values & a branded logo which slightly perplexingly doesn’t tie back into the musical theme.
The orange theme, however, is carried on in the decoration of the La vie douce outlets. Not having visited the Yokohama café, La vie douce Shinjuku is shaped in a funny bent tube sort of way with seating lined up along the window front. It would make for a good people watching spot if only this place was not in a more ‘remote’ location in Shinjuku but on the other hand, not many people will get to stare at you & your food either.
Speaking of which:
Cinnamon mousse, raspberry gelée, génoise, feuillantine
The slight tartness from the raspberry gelée & glaze opposing the sweet cinnamon mousse make for a very interesting combination which you don’t come upon often. The ganache coated feuillantine base adds a nice, crunchy texture & a bit of an intense chocolate note.
- Pistachio + cherry
Pistachio mousse, sour cherry gelée, génoise, feuillantine
Beautifully presented with its white chocolate dusting, this cake delivers on the taste front as well. The flavorful pistachio mousse harmonizes well against the sour cherry preserve. The base is essentially the same as the other cake.
Beverage options are limited & the tea does its job, that’s about it.
For anyone looking to relax after some stressful Shinjuku shopping or a day out at Shinjuku Park, La vie douce offers an upstyle cake break.