Special macaroons from the Picasso of pastry

The macaroons are mouthwatering, the box is a beauty

I confess I don’t need any encouragement whatsoever to partake of a Pierre Hermé macaroon. The only “problem” is deciding which flavour(s) to plump for. The famous French patissier (“the Picasso of pastry”) is a wow with his sweetly crispy-chewy taste explosions, with startling flavour combinations such as white truffle and hazelnut, milk chocolate and passion fruit (Mogador), and orange, Campari and grapefruit (Americano).

I’m also a sucker for a well-designed gift box, and this limited-edition beauty by the painter and illustrator Nicolas Vial, and available from October 24, caught my eye with its charming black cat atop the circular container. It costs £52 for 20 macaroons of any combination, including the Classics dark Porcelana chocolate, rose and salted butter caramel.

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Some might say it looks as if that cat is merely lazily stretching out on the box, but as “le Chat Chocolat” so resembles my own deceptively skinny moggy I know she’s leaping to gorge on the macaroons inside. For her own benefit, I’d better get there first…

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