If in New York I had Momofuku Milkbar, in San Francisco I have Tartine Bakery. I kept reading about Tartine and hearing people talk about it, always with an almost crazed look in their eye. Like “Oh you haven’t been to Tartine?? Oh! Well, you. Haven’t. LIIIIIIVED.”
Ok, maybe not that dramatic. But that’s how I’m going to react from now on when I speak to people who haven’t been there. I finally got around to checking it out last weekend and well, it was fantastic. It was beyond fantastic. It was the stuff dreams are made of. My dreams anyway.
I mean really, c’mon, look at these banana cream and coconut cream tarts. For size reference, the small ones are probably about four inches in diameter while that big one is probably about 10 or 11 inches. That thing is just begging, screaming and pleading for me to face plant into it. Sure, the initial smack of those crisp chocolate shavings might be uncomfortable but then burrowing through all that silky, luscious banana cream would be nothing short of heaven.
The only problem with having found Tartine, was that I ran into it about two minutes after having polished off a chocolate ice cream sundae just down the block. But I had to get something. I couldn’t just get a whiff of that warm, sugary, bakery goodness scent waffing out on to the sidewalk and go home with nothing. So I opted for something small: a single coconut macaroon. The flat-bottomed little dome of moist coconuty deliciousness with a golden toasted outer layer was just the perfect amount of baked sweet to satisfy me… for the moment.
The line at Tartine was literally out the door. I wasn’t going to wait that whole line to then just buy a 75 cent macaroon. So I thought, well why not pick up dinner while I’m here. And while Tartine does have sandwiches, quiches and other savory treats that could make for a scrumptious dinner, I knew what I’d be having that night: an èclair. I’ve been batty about these cream filled, chocolate covered french treats ever since I was a kid. On bakery runs with my dad, they were always my favorite.
One of the few things I’ve enjoyed about temporarily not living with my boyfriend is that he’s not around to nag me about my food choices or try to tell me that things like èclairs are not actually appropriate dinners. Sitting alone in my room eating an èclair might have looked sad from the outside, but let me tell you, there was nothing but warmth and fuzziness radiating from me as I dug into that Valrhona chocolate covered treat, and even more bliss as it oozed out pale yellow, vanilla flecked cream.
I have a birthday looming on the horizon and after this little taste of Tartine, I might just be going back for that massive banana cream pie. I mean, that could be a suitable breakfast, lunch and dinner for a couple of days, no?