Time Out says
Bibelot dishes up cakes and confectionary so couture, you’ll want to walk out wearing them
Think of shiny things. Diamonds. Kim Kardashian’s hair. Bibelot is shinier.
This high-tea salon from the Chez Dre crew (housed in what was formerly Chez Dre's overspill space) is so sleek, so modern and glittery, it’s like a spaceship with cake. We wouldn’t have batted an eyelid if it took off for planet Pastry while we were inside it.
Bibelot is an ambitious proposition: espresso bar, gelateria, pâtisserie, café, chocolate shop and 'library'. You can spy on the chocolatier tempering away in the chocolate room, sit on the stylish-but-stark seats at the front and spy on Coventry Street, or occupy the emerald-green sofa in the café space at the back. If you’re seeking inspiration, peruse the sugary tomes – Leiths Baking Bible, Larousse on Pastry, La Maison du Chocolat and so on.
There’s a glass-and-gold chest of drawers in the centre, stocked with Bibelot’s bags of grown-up lollies at grown-up prices: cocoa pop and orange-infused white chocolate; caramelised puff corn with milk chocolate and pink salt; chocolate nougat and so on. One wall is lined with more fancy tooth-rotters: jars of honey in which whole macadamias lurk mysteriously; yellow raisins coated with freeze-dried raspberries and white chocolate; glossy passionfruit caramels…
Cakes come courtesy of flour-power owner Andrea (‘Dre’) Reiss, a superstar chef pâtissier, whose CV includes Jacques Reymond’s Arintji in Fed Square (R.I.P.) and Michelin-starred swank-fests in both London (the Yauatcha/Hakkasan group) and Paris (Le Taillevent restaurant).
This impressive pedigree explains Bibelot’s European leanings: airy eclairs, citron tarts, whisper-thin sablé biscuits and tuiles. Macarons – displayed in a seven-metre glass-and-marble counter – come in a rainbow paint palette of shades and a dizzying array of fringe flavours: a dusky purple, salty-sweet olive and white chocolate number, for example, which has a smoodge of dark, treacle-salty olive paste at its centre, or the sherbet-y lemon myrtle and popping candy.
The passionfruit and mango St Honoré is a gravity-defying pillowy cloud of mango Chantilly atop a puff of golden pastry, studded with fat vanilla marshmallows and a gold leaf-cornered passionfruit pastille. The pastry houses a jammy surprise: zingy passionfruit crème, which sings nicely against the Chantilly's creamy richness.
Take some chocolate bonbons home with you: a buttery toasted coconut cream, a fiercely minty peppermint fondant and a delicate rose lychee truffle, perhaps. On winter mornings, we’ll be back for the spicy, creamy prana chai tea (ignore the accompanying tea strainer and you'll get a mouthful of peppercorns). On a hot day, we’ll return for Bibelot’s rich, jade-green pistachio ice-cream, studded with chewy nutty nuggets, or we’ll go for the tropical punch of the surprising strawberry and lemon myrtle gelato. In a few months, we’ll be back for the high tea – the café's debut savoury offering.
Yes, we’ll be back. But we can’t help thinking we prefer our cakes and cafés a little less shiny and a bit more cosy, with a cushion or two.
285-287 Coventry Street
|Opening hours:||Sun-Thu 10am-6pm; Fri, Sat 10am-10pm|