My first encounter with Sébastien Bouillet and his exquisite creations took place over the summer. I was visiting Lyon’s Croix Rousse neighborhood, located at the top of the city’s peninsula, and came across the most quaint little shop called Goûter, (the French word to describe the snack children eat mid-afternoon in France, usually at the end of a school day). Immediately, memories of my own childhood flooded my mind, and just for a second, as I walked into the shop, I was ten again.
The smell of warm and flaky pastries, the mouth-watering tartes and tartelettes (pies and mini pies) the beautiful colors of the local specialty, pralines tartes, and the various pound cakes by the cm (you choose how many centimeters wide you’d like your piece of cake) all created a feeling of comfort, happiness and warmth. I know it might seem like an odd thing to say but I felt at home, and the image of myself baking with my grand-mother comes to mind every time I stop in for a little douceur (a sweet something).
I was first introduced to Bouillet’s creations through his apricot and almond tartelettes and madeleines but the pastry chef is in fact well known for his dessert pastries, that are more complex, technically, taste-wise and aesthetically speaking. Indeed, in France, a real distinction is made between, vienoiseries, which are flaky breakfast or afternoon goûter type pastries, and on the other hand, patisseries, that belong to the cake family.
The chef’s patisserie, the flagship boutique, is located right next door to Goûter, and the chocolate shop is around the corner. I find it very impressive that one person can excel at three very different “métiers” but Bouillet has done so, and gives the impression that it was quite effortless.
Goûter opened less than a year ago and it’s already clear that this is an incredibly successful endeavor. I wanted to better understand Bouillet’s world, which includes boutiques in Lyon and Tokyo.
Check back tomorrow for our exclusive interview with the chef where he discusses his professional path, his plans for the future and what inspires him.
Sébastien Bouillet & Goûter
15 Place de la Croix Rousse
Monday: 9am-1pm & 2-7pm
T: 04 78 28 90 89