Note: Last weekend I went to Montreal. Check out more nibbles in my Snapshots from Montreal.
In the ice cream sandwich world, the macaron glacé might be the queen of them all. Instead of the long chocolate, tiny hole-filled cookies smashing generic vanilla ice cream, these are made with delicate French macarons as bookends and really good gelato inside.
It's hard to find them outside of France. This one was from Point G in Montreal, probably the best ice cream source in the city. Some people blab about Le Bilboquet but my Montreal food blogger pal Katerine insists that Point G is where it's at. "Le Bilboquet is fine—like Häagen-Dazs fine. Sure, it totally hits the spot, but why have Häagen-Dazs when you can have this?" And more importantly, why have just that when you can have it multiplied by macarons?
On the right side of the shop they have a bunch of colorful macarons in flavors galore: pear-ginger, caramel, pistachio, lavender-blueberry, citrus, chocolate-coconut, grapefruit, chocolate-hazelnut, creme brulee, chocolate-passionfruit, maple, dark chocolate, and more.
Unfortunately for the macaron glacé, where the macaron cookie part is about five times as big, it just comes in one big bright color and almond flavor.
Over on the left side, the glass case is full of gelato flavors like maple, mojito, rum-raisin, and strawberry. But most eye-catching is that foie gras hiding in the back corner. It's not super creamy—more dry and icy, and considering how rich duck livers are, it's surprisingly kind of refreshing.
The mini gelato shovel sample was plenty for me, though Point G sells it by the jar for $25. They recommend spreading it on baguette (not scooping it into a macaron glace).
Co-owner Thierry Andrieu, who runs the place with fellow pastry chef Julien Reignier, is usually around smiling. You gotta love his little hot pink tuft of hair (which matches his coat, the walls, and the framboise macarons).
How exactly do you eat a macaron glacé? It's kind of like a multi-layered cheeseburger. You start rotating your head, calculating the perfect entry point. But you really just have to go for it, like Katerine is doing here. The delicate macaron buns will inevitably shatter into sugary shards and the gelato will ooze out the sides. Luckily they serve it in a paper boat-shaped bowl and taking bites via the mini gelato shovel helps.
1266, ave. Du Mont-Royal E, Montreal Québec, H2J 1Y3 (map)