Café Gourmand

Our go-to dessert in French restaurants is the Café Gourmand: an espresso served together with a selection of typically three miniature desserts – tiny pots of mousse au chocolat or crème brûlée, a madeleine or mini gateau, a macaron, or a few slices of fresh fruit. When ordering, you don’t know what’s going to arrive, and restaurants might change it frequently. It is a nice way to try different desserts that a place has on offer.

Over the years we must have had Café Gourmand in dozens of places. To remember which ones are good, we’ve written reviews on tripadvisor for some of them. But it’s about time to do this in a more systematic way!

So here is our own rating scheme ‘fait maison’ for Café Gourmand:
A standard Café Gourmand should have three desserts from two different categories for variety. Categories could be cake, fruit, creamy desserts, etc. The standard rating is 2.5 stars. Stars are added or subtracted for quality, number of desserts, variety, presentation, and other, as shown here:

Default rating ★★½
Quality +/- ★ (or more)
Number: 3 desserts +/- x +/-
Variety: 2 categories +/- x +/- ½
Quality of coffee +/- ½
Presentation +/- ½
Price +/- ½

For example, a Café Gourmand with 3 desserts that are very yummy and come in 3 categories but poor presentation would get 3.5 stars, ★★½ + ★ + ½ – ½ = ★★★½.

Let’s present our first place: Pizza del Navona on avenue des Gobelins. They actually have two Café Gourmand, one with 3 and one (more pricy) with 4 desserts. They were both really good (+ ★½ for quality), but all creemy (- ½ for variety). Also they only came with one spoon (typical is two – one to eat the desserts, one for the coffee, but I’m not going to subtract anything here). So there we go:

Café Gourmand 3 desserts:   ★★★½
4 desserts:   ★★★★½

More ratings:

Place Rating Date Comments
Le Renard Café ★★★½ 19/12/2016 Variety 3, quality +½