Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Ode to a (Japanese) creampuff

Beard Papa
Various Locations Visited in CA and NYC

5 out of 5 grains of rice

by Senior Roving Correspondent Lily C.

Asian cuisine is not known for its desserts. Perhaps it is the fact that many of our people are lactose intolerant and thus cream is not widely embraced. Thank god one man in Osaka, Japan decided to create the world's best cream puff . . . and succeeded. I discovered the joy of the Beard Papa cream puff at a Fourth of July BBQ this year in NYC and was so happy to come across some additional locations in LA this week. In comparison to their European counterparts, Beard Papa's cream puffs are more light and airy. First the pastry shell is not as sweet. The pastry shell is baked fresh each day, but is not filled with cream until you order so the cream puff stays crispy on the outside. There is a special machine that looks like a coffee urn with a spigot that dispenses the creamy goodness. The cream filling is also more pudding like than whipped cream like and thus lighter (enabling one to eat more than one should). There are several different flavors of cream (vanilla, strawberry, coffee, green tea, etc.). I have tried the vanilla and strawberry. While both are stupendous, for me the strawberry edges out the vanilla due to the bits of real strawberries in the filling. There are no preservatives in these cream puffs so they taste super fresh (and also must be eaten almost immediately). Ahhhh perfection that can held in the palm of your hand.