Damn it. The salaryman in front of me swept the remaining 20 choux cream puff (custard and banana) and nothing was left . I had returned to LE R CINQ try the cream puff because it looks potentially delish with the nice brown cookie crust. Not satisfied to go empty handed, I had to hurry and place my order as customers were gushing around the cake counter in a fast and furious manner. I guessed I did not miss the choux cream puff because the Eclair Fruit Rouge (¥441) is sufficient to testify the skills of the chef.
Who's behind Le R Cinq?
Born in the family of boulangerie, Chef Yohei Nakayama started working at local hotels and restaurants before moving to France to train under renowned chocolatier Patrick Chevallot and pastry shop Arnauld Delmontel. After starting his own shop, he continued to shine at numerous prestigious pastry competitions, both domestic and overseas.
On the first bite, the eclair shell snaps delightfully as the velvety pink filling insinuates itself across the palate with its pronounced berry tones. I proceeded to pluck the shell off and finish it in seconds, before digging into the chantily cream, strawberry custard and the sweet fruits. The fruits were as juicy as the raspberries that were sandwiched in between the macaron shells of the Pistachio Macaron (¥504) that I had during my first visit.
I have a weakness for macarons, especially when they are upsized to resemble a decent gateaux. The green almond meringue disintegrates effortlessly as I jammed my fork through it, only to hit a moist secondary layer that combines with the pistachio cream to give a sensorial pleasure on the tongue. I felt a sense of loss as I licked the last crumbs of meringue from the cake holder.
Meanwhile, I was confounded by the Yuzu Fondant. The top layer of white chocolate ganache was irritatingly sticky. Working down the layers, there is highly sourish yuzu cream that dwarfed the chocolate sponge and a semi-bitter milk chocolate cream. Overall, this yuzu-chocolate effort left me unimpressed.
Similarly, the Cheminee, meaning chimney in French, was disenchanting, despite commendable efforts to look like a chimney with a medium satay stick poked through the middle. The chocolate coating, albeit thin, clawed into the chocolate mousse despite having been left at room temperature for hours.
The cake itself is composed of mousse with a thick raspberry chocolate ganache and chocolate sponge. Ignoring the cake, the raspberry macaron on top was handled as consistent as the earlier pistachio macaron. It is no wonder the staff had highly recommended the macarons but I thought I could kill two birds with one stone by having the cakes that contain them.
I have never understand why Japanese love Mont Blanc so much but I can see why Chef Nakayana's Mont Blanc parfait is always the earliest to vanish from the cake rack. The chestnut purée squirted obediently on a healthy plop of vanilla pastry cream but it is not obsessedly sweet, all thanks to the sourish plump cassis compote at the base. The meringue was shrunk to the bare three cigar sticks on top but in exchange, there were more crumbles, much to my delight.
There are many other pretty parfaits such as Praline Orange and their all-time popular Strawberry Shortcake (in parfait form). Unless you are a chocolate fan, you will not be disappointed by the creations here. There is also a good range of bread here but do grab them fast as each type is only available in few pieces.
Le R Cinq ルエールサンク
Tokyo Chuo-ku, Kyobashi 2-18-2
Kyobashi Meikai Building 1F
Access: 1-min walk from Toei Asakusa Line Takaramachi Station
Closed on Sundays
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