Apparently at the beginning of December, a new bakery called La Boule opened up round the corner from where I live and I didn’t notice until a week ago. Naturally, I needed to go check it out because FOOD. Not just food, but food that was close to me. Food that was close to me and delicious.
To sum up, I like food.
Born and raised in YEG, Jennifer, the owner and head pastry chef at La Boule who rocks her Red Seal in Cheffing Like A Boss (fairly certain that’s the accurate title), came up with the idea to open La Boule: Patisserie and Bakery roughly a year ago. Knowing there are tons of bakeries north of the river, Jennifer found the perfect spot in Old Strathcona. Soon after, she went to work and was part of every single decision in her new and shiny space.
I asked Jennifer if she was nervous about opening a bakery in the economy we currently reside in and of course she was. Who wouldn’t be? But she also knew she would be helping the economy by creating new jobs and providing something very few people will ever give up: coffee.
It’s true. People are still going to Starbucks and spending $7 on a latte because people need their coffee. Why not bring in something local? I’ve found that Edmontonians are evolving from the Brand Names/Industries and starting to support local, even in this economic climate, which is awesome to see.
While my husband, two friends and I were sitting there, we noticed it was a surprisingly busy little spot. Jennifer said it depended on the time and the day whether they were busy or not. This was definitely a good day for business.
I think my favourite part of the bakery is the separate room that can be seen from the street and the seating area of the bakery where Jennifer can make chocolate-y good things. I love watching people do their thang. Jennifer told us that she will be posting on their Twitter and Facebook accounts of when you can come in to watch the magic happen.
In the meantime, I forced my friends to get something different so we could try multiple things.
Craig got a vanilla latte and a vanilla bean sour cherry cheesecake. It looked too good to eat. “I liked the minimal decor, my cheesecake was delicious without being too heavy, latte was pretty standard, pastries looked very tempting which made me want to come back and try a few more. Owner was very nice, passionate. Accommodating. Excited to go back for more.”
Nicole ignoring me completely got herself a vanilla latte as well. But also a savory brioche & pecorino & sage croissant. “If you like Duchess, then you’ll enjoy the smaller, quaint La Boule. The atmosphere is simple and the pastries are beautiful. Can’t wait for the bread since the brioche was tasty and flaky!”
Graeme got an Americano and a chocolate croissant. Something he consumes frequently when we’re abroad. “The chocolate croissant was tasty and the Americano was delicious. If you like supporting local, check out Old Strathcona’s newest bakery!”
And I got myself a peppermint tea misto and hazelnut espresso torte. These are two things I didn’t overly expect to enjoy. I’m very basic when it comes to tea and I don’t enjoy them foggy unless it’s a chai tea latte. I also don’t like the taste of espresso at all. But I had to try something different. FOR SCIENCE!
They were both fan freaking tastic and I want them both every single day. I’m mad that I’m not currently sipping on this tea.
In the new year, Jennifer plans on bringing out the big guns: bread. She’s going to master her huge oven, nicknamed Hank, and create some unreal breads soon and I can’t wait. The world of bakeries seem like one big happy family. When La Boule opened, they received flowers from Duchess, advice and help from the NAIT Culinary Arts Program, and praise from other local bakeries for opening up.
On Christmas Eve, Jennifer noticed a customer trying to get into La Boule, but they were closed. He was looking to purchase cupcakes so she sent him over to Flirt Cupcakes on Whyte. It’s incredibly nice to see local businesses helping each other out like that, and caring about their customers.
Which is definitely something I noticed right away when I walked into La Boule. Jennifer was sitting with other customers and chatting with them. She wants to make sure everyone has an enjoyable experience and it’s obvious with the employees she’s hired. The three that were working were friendly, always had a smile on their faces, and super helpful.
Along with providing a great product, customer service has always been number one for me and La Boule serves both. I would highly recommend checking this bakery out!