Patisserie Mont St. Clair by Hironobu Tsujiguchi: モンサンクレール

If you are a regular viewer of Japanese variety show, especially those about cooking or food, you may find his face familiar. He is Chef Hironobu Tsujiguchi, who is by now a very successful celebrity chef-owner with many shops under his belt. Perhaps the easiest recognizable feature about him is his spiked golden hair and black spectacles. I have been following some news about his shops from many years ago and seems like he has been expanding his business quite fervently (managing 12 brands till date).

Photo Credit: Mont St Clair
Located in Jiyugaoka that is rated as one of the best districts to live in Tokyo, Mont St Clair was his maiden patisserie shop opened since 1998. Perhaps the reason why he shot to fame was due to his victory in the IRON CHEF show on Fuji TV. But more than just that, he won his first national western pastry award at the young age of 23 and subsequently clinched several medals year after year.
Mont St. Clair ¥420 モンサンクレール 
Honestly, I did find the portion of his creation slightly small for the price, but I was truly blown away by the well-balanced combination of textures and flavours after having the cakes. Take for instance, the Mont St. Clair which shares the shop's name, is literally a coffee bomb. It's not too complicated, but very detailed.
A sticky biscuit jaconde is surrounded with intense coffee creme beurre (buttercream) then adorns with bitter yet so crunchy caramelized hazelnuts and almonds.

テヴェールショコラ  ¥475
The Vert Chocolat is a rather dense creamy gateau that is made of a chocolate mousse gateaux, green tea ganache centre and a very delightful layer of chocolate crispy crunch stored in the core of this petit gateaux.
リュミエール Lumiere  ¥475
I seldom pick citrusy cakes especially when the orange/lemon/yuzu is placed together with dark chocolate because both are quite dominant and sometimes get into a fight and one loses out. Fortunately, there was NO chocolate here and the entire creation was sparkling with a nice jelly sheen. 
Imagine this to be our Earth and the axis is a wobbly grapefruit jelly filled with the red citrus flesh. Majority of the mass is taken up by the grapefruit mousse with a core of honey mousse.  Honestly, the texture of the mousse is as soft as that of the legendary Hidemi Sugino. The base sits a crunchy sable biscuit that supports the overall very light and fruity flavours of this cake called Lumiere. 
If you happen to be in the Jiyugaoka area, don't go to the Jiyugaoka's Sweet Forest which is commonly recommended on travel guidebooks.
Try this one.

Mont St. Clair モンサンクレール
Tokyo Meguro Ku Jiyugaoka 2-22-4
Tel 03-3718-5200
Shop 11am-7pm
Salon 11am-5.30pm 
Close on Wed
For Details:
Access: 10min walk from Front Exit of Tokyu Tohoku Line Jiyugaoka Station 
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  1. Three years later, the Mont St. Clair still exists, though the shape has changed, at least in its recent appearance. Unfortunately, coffee is not my thing, though you had better luck than me on other choices as well.


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