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CHEZ KARINE @Serendra, Pierre Hermé Macarons of Manila?

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CHEZ KARINE, French for "At Karen's Place", is a Serendra Neighborhood Bakery by Pastry Chef Karen Yang. She graduated with a Patisserie Diploma from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris and completed her internship creating macarons for French Pastry Chef Pierre Hermé.

(Read: Dessert Comes First | Opening This Sunday: Manila’s Newest Patisserie)

Karen's macarons are sold at P50/piece versus Krista's (P35), Brasserie Cicou (P35), Bizu (P45), and Margarita Fores' Lusso (P50). Are her macarons really worth the premium? Are you paying for Pierre Hermé macaron quality?

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Chez Karine Bakery MenuHot & Cold Coffee, Hot & Iced Tea, Smoothie  | Macarons, Royal Pudding, Panna Cotta, Cookies, Entremets, Tarts & Pastry, Honey Toast

Besides the macarons, Chez Karine is known for its royal pudding specialty. Also on its menu are coffee, hot choco, and cakes to complete the dessert cafe experience.

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Macaron (P50/pc.)

The macarons are well-infused with flavors and have a chewier bite unlike the usual, crunchy meringue of other macarons offered in Manila. We found them a bit soft and a tad small, though--bitin if you only eat one.

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(clockwise from top) Lemon. Filled with lemon curd cream. Strawberry. Filled with strawberry buttercream. Pistachio. Filled with pistachio ganache. Salted Caramel. Filled with salted caramel buttercream.

The Pistachio and Salted Caramel were my faves. It would be nice if they carried more unique flavors...

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Assorted Macarons (Box of 7 - P350).

The boxes are cute, and a box of 7 would make a good surprise gift for someone special.

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Muscovado and Vanilla Royal Pudding (P100/each). Soft-set custard pudding with dark caramel at the bottom.

A lot of foodies are raving about the Royal Pudding, mostly because of the cute bottles that you can reuse at home. (Read: Tales from the Tummy | Chez Karine Bakery in Serendra)

I liked the smooth texture of the pudding specially the Muscovado flavor because of its sweet, familiar taste. 

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It's certainly good to go, and kids love it. (Tip: Eat it as it is! When Aidan mixed the pudding, it liquified and lost its smooth texture.)

Thing is, I do think that it is expensive. If you remove the bottle, the quantity is small -not enough to justify the P100 price tag.

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Mango Panna Cotta (P100/each). Classic cream-based Italian dessert.

An alternative to the pudding would be the fruit-based Panna Cotta, which is sold at the same price.

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Personally, I found the Panna Cotta underwhelming, even with its layer of mango on top. It did not taste good when mixed already. I suggest you order the Royal Pudding instead.

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Caramel Macchiato (P185). Caramel bavarois, espresso cremeaus, soft caramel, chocolate biscuit.

The cakes are small and nothing to rave about. Better go to Cake Club in Bonifacio High Street Central for your cake fix. (Read: Our Awesome PlanetThe Cake Club Dessert Haven)

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Muscovado Latte (P105). Our cafe latte slightly sweetened and topped with muscovado foam.

I enjoyed my cup of latte with its thick layer of sweet foam--a great match for the desserts.

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Hot Chocolate (P115). Melted 65% couverture chocolate with steamed milk, garnished with whipped cream and marshmallows.

My wife and Aidan loved the hot chocolate's milky taste.

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Plus points to Chez Karine for the carefully designed packaging. They would make wonderful-looking gifts for loved ones. :)

Aside from their use of quality ingredients, their packaging and food presentation somehow justify the premium pricing.

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If you find yourself in the Serendra area, go on a tasting spree of the different flavors of Chez Karine Macarons. The Royal Pudding is something unique to try too. Just keep in mind that you're paying premium for the quality, packaging and branding.

The place is quite small and probably intended as a take-out counter only. The area of the alfresco tables gets dark at night, so it's not recommended as a dessert place to hang out.

CHEZ KARINE BAKERY
We are a French patisserie inspired by Asian and American flavors.
G/F Serendra Mall (beside Sonja's Cupcakes and Gelatissimo), Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
Email: orders@chezkarine.com
Telephone: +632 804-1889
Mobile: +63 917 323-2845 
Website:  http://www.chezkarine.com
FacebookChez Karine Bakery 

Operating Hours:
Sunday to Thursday 10.00 am to 10.00pm
Friday to Saturday  10.00 am to 11.00pm

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Full Disclosure: Nothing to disclose. We paid for our orders. We are not connected with the establishment or any organization marketing it.

P.S. It's the first time I've heard of Pastry Chef Karen Yang. What do you think of her treats at Chez Karine?

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I pretty much agree that the price is on the expensive side. While my Mum agrees that the servings are pretty small aka "bitin". Here's my take on it sir : http://misstablenapkin.blogspot.com/2012/07/chez-karine-bakery.html

how do the macarons compare?

I am happy for Chez Karine, but also nervous for her. It is tremendous pressure & I think unfair to be compared to Pierre Herme. Her macarons are okay, but not PH level --- yet. So many factors to consider --- access to the best ingredients, our climate, price point, etc. Right now, I prefer Christa's macarons, but I do give it to CK for raising the bar for ambiance, choice products, and packaging. Will wait til she finds her signature and truly shine on her own, minus the PH shadow.

Ditto with Andre. CK macarons are not of Herme level. Better keep "interned at PH" off the press kits since it just raises people's expectations. Enjoyed the royal pudding but wondered if most of its P150 price tag went to packaging cost. But nitpicking aside :) I commend her for her biz venture

uhhh! start your day with chef karine's chocolate macarons with cafe latte...heaven :)

oooh! Looks great! I love macarons! The best I've tried was from Laduree but then I find the ones they sell at Trader Joe's good as well. :) Eager to try the muscovado pudding. Great post!

www.themommist.com

so, aside from having interned with PH and studying at LCB, (just out of curiousity) where her chef experiences are as well? btw, i do agree, Laduree macaroons are great, i tried paul's as well and payard's, payard's macaroons are great becuase it felt like it was melting in your mouth. (this is coming from a person who's not a big fan of macaroons)

Nag-stage lang sa PH, PH macarons of manila na? From what I know PH macarons are not made in the stores but in a factory outside of Paris. Alsace ata. So walang nakakaalam ng recipe ng macarons nila, therefore no one could recreate them unless dun ka sa factory nag-stage.


Ladurée and Sadaharu Aoki macarons are the best for me.

It all looks so yummy!i wanna try their pudding! :)

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