The holidays are here—and that means scrambling to find those extra special desserts for your celebrations, whether it's a family gathering or an office party. While channeling your inner Great British Baking Show contestant is a nice idea, ordering from L.A.'s hottest restaurants and bakeries might put you in a better mood. This year, consider the Bûche de Noël, the fancy French name for Yule Log. There are tons of creative iterations of this traditional holiday treat, but in its traditional form, it's a decadent rolled and frosted cake that is lavishly decorated with forest-inspired toppings (think marshmallow mushrooms and holly made from marzipan). Luckily for us, more bakeries and restaurants are offering this festive confection by the slice and to-go. Here are the five best Bûche de Noëls to order in L.A. right now.
Joan's on Third (Beverly Grove & Studio City)
Joan McNamara's gourmet marketplace has once again become a one-stop shop for all holiday treat cravings—whether you need a holiday decorated sugar cookie or something for your seasonal fête. In addition to an assortment of sweets (holiday or otherwise), each location will feature Bûche de Noël. Their version of this holiday sweet is a play on Joan's signature fluffy, flourless Chocolate Roulade recipe that is festively decorated with powdered sugar dusted reindeer and foliage. $68/ea. Available through Saturday, December 31. Order 72 hours advance notice (place orders by phone or online).
The Arthur J (Manhattan Beach)
Executive Pastry Chef Uyen Nguyen is making magic over at the Arthur J. Her seasonally changing desserts always impress, and her Yule Log is no exception. The chocolate log is made with maple cream and topped with meringue mushrooms, chocolate twigs, candied pecans and maple syrup. $42 for a whole order to-go, or by the slice. Available through December 31. Order 72 hours advance notice by calling 310-878-9620.
Crème Caramel LA (Sherman Oaks)
Kristine de la Cruz is bringing back Bûche de Noël to her beloved Valley bakeshop for the holidays. Available in three different sizes, the festive confection, inspired by traditional Yule Logs, features a chocolate sponge cake rolled with cream cheese and sweet cream covered in rich dark chocolate ganache—and each is gilded with chocolate "bark," slivered almond "pinecones," meringue "mushrooms," and a cranberry "holly" sprig. $20 mini log (serves 2-3), $50 small log (serves 6-8), $85 full log (serves 14-16). Available through December 24. Order seven days in advance by calling 818-949-8352.
Proof (Atwater Village)
At Proof Bakery in Atwater Village, Na Young Ma has been dishing out some of the cities best pastries, cakes and breads. Her Bûche de Noël is no exception. Equal parts beautiful and delicious, it's a reinvention of the classic with a graham sponge, dark chocolate mousse and cinnamon meringue. $42 for 10". Available through Christmas. Order for pick-up by calling 323-664-8633.
Little Next Door (Beverly Grove)
This French neighborhood staple naturally offers the classically French holiday dessert. Choose from three different types of Bûche de Noël depending on your flavor interest: La Classic has a light chestnut cream, while La Queen has a crème brulee filling, and Noir is for the chocolate lovers with layers upon layers of chocolate goodness. Available through Christmas. 48 hour notice required, call store (323-951-1010) or order online.
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