Tell us a bit about who you are and what you do…
Duchess Bakestore is a French inspired patisserie located in the heart of Edmonton. Open since 2009, we’ve received numerous accolades and most recently published our very own cookbook which has won several national and international awards.
Where did the idea for the Duchess Bake Shop come from?
The inspiration for the bakery came from the founder’s time living in Tokyo for four years, as well as their various travels through France. The pastry scene in Tokyo is very advanced and many of the best stores in Paris also have a store in Tokyo. That combined with the unique Japanese approach to customer service and design was extremely inspirational.
What from the menu would you recommend a first-timer try?
We of course would recommend our macaron, particularly the salted caramel. We’d recommend a coffee and a croissant as well, as you always need to judge a place by the classics.
How does Edmonton inspire your creativity?
Edmonton is full of a huge number of creative individuals who are very mutually supportive of each other. People are always eager to work together to create interesting projects which is very inspiring and a lot of fun.
How would you describe the city?
Edmonton is a city coming of age. The past 5 years have seen an explosion of great new restaurants and bars and entertainment come on the scene with many more poised to open in the coming year. It’s a very exciting time to be part of the city and there’s an unbridled sense of optimism in the air, despite oil based economic woes.
Where would you go for dinner or drinks in Edmonton?
For dinner I wouldn’t miss Corso 32 or RNG RD (Range Road). Both are great places with phenomenal food. For cocktails I’d hit up Three Boars – it has a very extensive repertoire of excellent drinks.
If you weren’t based in Edmonton, where in Alberta would you go and why?
Sometimes we daydream about picking up and moving everything to Jasper. It’s a beautiful area and the Rocky Mountains are simply sublime.
What is your favorite time of the year in the city and why?
Personally, I love the Spring. When the buds are breaking on all of the trees the River Valley comes alive and it seems like the entire population of the city comes out to enjoy the first warm days of the year.
Alberta is a place of wonderful contrasts; do you think it’s important to experience both the urban and the rural sides of the province?
Absolutely it is. The country side has a deep beauty of it’s own. Going for a drive in August when the canola fields are in full bloom under the huge sky of the prairies is a sight unlike any other.
Finally – describe Edmonton in just three words…
Changing, friendly, vibrant
GARNER’S TOP 5
The Duchess Bake Shop’s very own Macarons
Dinner at Corso 32
The Rocky Mountains
Cocktails at the Three Boars