Monday, July 18, 2016

Maison Hector

Pink walls and counter, a balcony filled with nutella stacked pallets. A whipping cream machine. Four ice cream machines. Waffles baked on sight. Fresh, big, fat, beignets stuffed with nutella or apples or  berries, or chocolate, or ice cream. We could only watch for so long before we had to have our own.

We ordered strawberry filling with whipped cream. Mouth watering, I watched the server slice the beignet, microwave it warm, slather in the strawberry jam, then turn to the whipping cream machine. The first bite was like first love--euphoric. We returned the next day for the traditional nutella and whipping cream. The warm nutella and melting cream oozed slowly over my sizzling taste buds. Cream ran down the side of my mouth. With regret I passed it to Tony for his turn, and watched him closely until he handed it back.

I couldn't wait for the next day, and the next--I even planned the last day according to our departure. We'd pack up, load the car, then skip happily off to a light lunch followed by a stop at Maison Hector.  My last tender memory of St. Malo would be a warm, fresh, beignet. I even planned the last flavor: warm nutella and whipping cream.

The only problem was the way they served it. With napkins. The precious, warm cream slid out and was absorbed into the napkin fibers.  So to compensate this misfortune, I admit that I saved the plastic salad bowl from a quick lunch, took it to our apartment and washed it. I took it back to Maison Hector to insure not one delicious bite was lost. 

My next to last day beignet indulgent moment finally arrived. We had a healthy lunch, then purposefully headed to Maison Hector. Pavlov's theories were going strong. 

I ordered apple filling and cream. I took the warm beignet with reverence then slinked to the back table with my bowl, my heart racing for the first bite. 

I denied the awful truth until I was three bites in. First the apple filling was nearly tasteless and the temperature of the beignet wasn't quite right. The first bite popped the blob of whipping cream right out of the beignet and onto the table. It had even missed the bowl beneath. And then the biggest disappointment of my life (almost). The beignet was stale. 

It was really the perfect ending to a wonderful trip. Otherwise I may not have left.