Boulangerie on Bäckerstrasse
Barely half a year in business, Parémi, the new boulangerie/ patisserie by the young Austrian-French couple Patricia Petschenig and Rémi Soulier, has been an instant success. Bringing Gallic delights to a city with a sweet tooth, it fills a void among the many excellent, traditional Konditoreien.
Petschenig – petite, with round, horn-rimmed glasses, her dark, long hair tucked under a black cap – is responsible for the pastries. “I loved the precision and decorativeness of it from childhood,” she said. Soulier – handsome, with joie-de-vivre good looks – had a more circumspect career before he found his true calling: After an unfinished degree in life sciences and a year in New Zealand, he knew he wanted to work with his hands. “I partly grew up in France and back in Vienna, I missed the iconic French baguettes and croissants,” he added. And so, a business was born. After thorough training in France with, among others, Cédric Grolet and Gérard Mulot, the two opened their shop last November on Bäckerstraße (Baker Street, no pun intended) in the 1st district.
Under the watchful eye of Petschenig, a vaulted former stable was turned into a bright and inviting space with whitewashed walls and occasional exposed stonework, French herringbone parquet and Austrian Thonet chairs, where they also serve excellent fresh coffee.
Slightly perplexed by how quickly things have taken off, Petschenig and Soulier work from 5:00 to 18:00 to keep things rolling. Throughout the day, fresh baguettes, buttery croissants, light-as-a-feather macarons and crunchy tuiles are brought straight from the bakery into the shop. Only divided by a glass wall, you can see the team of French and Austrian patissiers and boulangers in action.
Making plans for the future may be premature, but high on their list is creating a terrace. Now that spring has sprung, you may have to jump for a free table.
Tuiles aux Amandes
· 210 g egg white (approximately 4–5 eggs)
· 170 g sugar
· 85 g butter
· 40 g flour
· 150 g shaved almonds
1. Lightly whisk the egg whites and the sugar
2. Stir the flour and the almonds together in a separate bowl
3. Melt the butter at low heat
4. Work the butter into the egg white and sugar mixture
5. Slowly stir in the flour and almonds
6. Let the batter rest in the fridge, ideally for a day
7. Preheat the oven at 180 degrees
8. Take a baking tray and cover with a silicon mat
9. Scoop a good spoonful of the batter on the mat
10. Using a spatula, smooth out the batter as flat as possible
11. Repeat until the tray is full, then put into the oven for 10 to 12 minutes
12. To give the tuiles their characteristic rooftile shape, cool them off by draping them over a rolling pin or another cylindrical form straight out of the oven
A slightly altered version of this article was published in Metropole – Vienna in English, April 2018 issue no. 26.