Delicious. Decadent. Drool-worthy. Divine!
Yes, after months upon months of hearing all the cronut hype, I finally got my first taste of this one-of-kind-sweet-treat! This month’s version was incredible layers of airy and crunchy pastry with a surprisingly delightful cream filling of Valrhona milk chocolate, topped with caramelized malt icing and a drizzle of maldon sea salt. Not too sweet… definitely rich in taste, I was absolutely amazed at the crunchy layers not only outside but deep inside the layers upon layers of this pastry…. infact, I am still wondering, “how did Dominique Ansel do that”!
It’s not easy to get a cronut. One needs to put some sweat and tears to get their hands on this special treat. Limited quantities are prepared each day – and Dominique Ansel has no plans to franchise or expand his cronut business.
So, how can you get a cronut? Well, you could get in the line outside the Dominique Ansel bakery in downtown NYC around 5:30 AM and wait for the bakery to open at 8 to see if you were lucky enough to snag a max of 2 cronuts per person. Or you could get online (www.cronutpreorder.com) and place an order for a max of 6 cronuts on Mondays at precisely 11 AM (except each time I tried this, my computer screen froze for over 30-45 minutes- only to finally spit out a message saying that I have missed my chance and its too late to place an order that week).
I knew I would not be schlepping to NYC for a 5:30 AM line forming. So that option was out. And I had already failed at option number 2. But then I saw another opportunity at the NYC Food & Wine Festival last October – where pastry chef Dominique Ansel hosted a Dessert Wonderland party. Not only did I go to that event, I dragged two of my Fairfield county friends to it as well. We figured the $125 ticket is totally worth it for a taste of the cronut. Except! Except….. there were no cronuts being handed out at that party. Just the 5 lucky winners who found a “golden ticket” in the Dominique Ansel cookbook available for purchase that night. Aaaarrgghh!!!
Then…. I found out that there is another way. Orders of over 50 cronuts can be placed via email on the first of each month for pickup on a specific date during the following month. A certain number of orders are honored on a first come first serve basis with this email ordering system. If you are lucky – you’ll get a call confirming your order, later that day.
So, I placed the order on Dec 1st and walked around all morning at work with my cell phone in my hand. It was with me at my desk, it was with me in meetings, it was with me in the ladies room…. you name it! Finally, I got the call around 1:30PM. I HAD SNAGGED THE CRONUTS!!!
It took while for the initial excitement to die down and for the reality to set it. Oh, shit! what the heck am I going to do with 50 cronuts!!! Think sugar-coma!
Then it hit me…. I must have a Cronuts & Champagne party and invite my closest foodie-friends and family. Why not share this experience together… after all its more fun that way, right? It truly was! Everyone who came to party really REALLY wanted to try the cronut. My friend Andrew had a great line, “Man, I love this stuff so much that I am going to walk around and lick off any crumbs I see on people’s faces”!!! LOL! It was a house-full of like-minded, cronut-obsessed, die-hard-foodies! The event was super-fun and the star of the show, the cronut, was simply stupendous! It is totally worth all the hype!