I first came upon Châteraisé シャトレーゼ (pronounced as Sha-To-Ray-Sze) name mentioned on Facebook, about how disappointed a friend was when he arrived past Châteraisé’s closing time. Hmm .. must be good, right? Prior to that, I have not the faintest inkling of what Châteraisé was all about.
Friends are making a big fuss yet again as Châteraisé has just opened their third branch at Publika, their first standalone branch. For the uninitiated, their first two stores are located in Isetan KLCC and Isetan 1 Utama. My curiosity got the best of me … all these hoo-ha, it gives me a darn good reason to go and find out what’s the big fuss was all about.
Almost all of our local blogs mentioned FAMOUS and POPULAR cake and pastry shop from Japan. Pardon my ignorance, but I’ve never heard of Châteraisé before. One blog even mentioned famous cake and FRENCH pastry shop from Japan. Huh? Is it a French pastry shop? But anyway, I have no idea whether they are famous and popular, but with 460 stores opened in Japan, for sure they are doing well in the Land of the Rising Sun.
From what I read about Châteraisé, the pastries are made locally in Japan, and imported to Malaysia. And I like it that their ingredients are supplied by local farmers fresh daily. One blog mentioned that they own some farms and ranches; they can establish quality control and keep operating cost down. Their products are free of artificial flavors, coloring agents, stabilizing agents, etc. All in all, it is a responsible brand; worth supporting.
I found this blog by a Japanese in English language, and it’s worth reading about the blogger’s visit to the Châteraisé factory in the Yamanashi Prefecture in Japan. This blog says Chateraise is the best pastry store in Japan, so it leads me believe that Chateraise is really something in the heart of the Japanese. (Update 28 Oct 2016: according to a Japanese friend of mine, Châteraisé is everywhere in Japan, and she would use “affordable” to describe their so-called popularity in Japan).
Checking out their One Utama store on a weekday afternoon, it was a pleasant experience. There is just this something about Japanese creations, all pretty and dainty. Châteraisé is no exception. It makes you feel good in a goodie-doodie way. Service was impeccable too!
I did my ‘research’ prior to the visit, so it was a matter of ‘buy and go‘ .. otherwise with all the pretty-dainty things staring at you, that was no mean feat! One man’s
meat cake is another man’s poison rings true: some people liked this and that cake, and some were against it.
Their Legendary Fresh Cream Cake (RM 14.80 + 6% GST) is marked as No 1 Hot Selling item. Described as, “Moist and soft cake, with freshly squeezed rich milk from Hokkaido, newly laid eggs and freshly plucked strawberries… The strawberry sauce just melts in your mouth and the flavour of the rich Hokkaido cream you will never forget.” For whatever reason, I didn’t buy this.
A friend recommeded their White Zebra (RM 14.80 + 6% GST) instead, marked as No 2 Hot Selling. I decided to give this a miss as I am not a huge fan of mille crepe. Also, from the cake’s description “Eighteen layers of milk crepes with heavy cream made with fresh milk, butter and honey”, it sounded too sweet for my liking. My sweet tooth is ain’t that sweet.
So, I got neither. I went against the norm and made a beeline for:
Double Fantasy (RM 4.80 + 6% GST), described as cream puff filled to the brim with fresh cream and fresh egg custard. I nearly laughed out loud, reading that the cream puff is made with ‘low-odor’ eggs, said to be just right for confectionery making. Haha, perfect for that someone in my life.
In order to ‘remove’ the distinct odor typical for eggs, Châteraisé cooperate with their contracted farms using their expertise when it comes to animal feed. The chickens are raised healthily and their metabolism is altered in such a away that the chickens lay low odor eggs. Wahh … not you typical eggs!
Baked Cheese Cake (RM 9.80 + 6% GST), described as “With generous amount of Bretagne cream cheese, French and Mascarpone Cheese, our cheese cake is baked at low temperature ~ creating the soft and mild texture. With plenty of fermented butter, it crumbles in your mouth so you can enjoy flavorful butter.” Hmm … have you heard of fermented butter before?
Taste-wise, it wasn’t mind-blowing crumbly-buttery-soft-cheesy as claimed; just alright for me.
I was more impressed with their packaging than the cake itself (says a lot about my background, huh):
It comes with an ice pack to keep the cake chilled, a folded ‘insert’ to prevent my single slice of cake from sliding inside the box and a small plastic spoon. All these inside a perforated box for ease of consumption and removing from the box! Sooo Japanese, sooo Omotenashi! I thought that the price is rather reasonable for imported goods, plus all the frills.
Sis also bought a box of Assorted Baked Confectionery 10 pieces (RM 24.50 + 6% GST) as a gift … it makes such a pretty gift, completes with Châteraisé bow.
Even though I wasn’t blown away by Châteraisé in the taste compartment, their business motto and pricing (imported, good quality products and ingredients) work for me. And their minimalist-Omotenashi packaging, of course. So ya, will be back for more …
Suria KLCC (Opened March 2016): Isetan Concourse Floor Suria KLCC Kuala Lumpur City Centre 50088 Kuala Lumpur. Business hours: 10am-9.30pm
One Utama (Opened June 2016): Isetan 2nd Floor – Eat Paradise One Utama Lot G102, F101 & S101,1 Lebuh Bandar Utama,Bandar Utama City Centre, 47800 Petaling Jaya Selangor. Business hours: 10am-10pm (Sunday to Thursday) and 10am-10.30pm (Friday, Saturday & Public Holidays)
Publika (Opened October 2016): A4-G2-03 Solaris Dutamas, No 1 Jalan Dutamas 1, 50480 Kuala Lumpur. Business hours: 11am-10pm