Wychwood Chocolate & Pastry Fair; Pain Perdu

An elderly man sat shaking slightly in front of three cakes; I felt like I should walk away having had SOME chocolate besides three merckins. He gave me a crushed slice extracted from a cake hidden behind the presentable ones; Betty Crocker would have tasted better. There was a saggy Santa Claus, a children’s chocolate eating competition, and a chocolate painting table that displayed sheet after sheet stained with light brown splotches and marks. I’d say this was for kids, but at $20 a ticket, the locals who took their children must be burning disposable money in lieu of cocaine. A ticket gets you a lottery spin (I won an empty envelope!) and a compact disc of holiday music sung by a smug face from which I’ve never heard; also, I don’t own any device capable of playing a compact disc. If this is the First Annual Chocolate and Pastry Fair (there were NO PASTRIES AT ALL, unless you count giant, stale fortune cookies, which I don’t), I pray they don’t turn enough profit to have a second year. My Groupon ticket was $12, down from $20, and feel fleeced.

1st Annual Christmas Chocolate & Pastry Fair
Wychwood Barns, Main Hall, 601 Christie St., Toronto, On M6G 4C7

The biting cold outside the Wychwood barns drove me in search of something, anything, to reconcile my sin of giving the chocolate fair money, and Pain Perdue presented my salvation. The quaint, Basque-French patisserie offered a counter full of fresh-baked pastries and quiches, not a child stroller to be seen, French music wafting out over speakers. My pain aux raisins was one and a half scaled larger than expected, but deflated and flat, as if my expectations were squashed without losing volume. Flaky and sweet, its change of appearance did nothing to detract from my treat. The girl behind the counter attempted a cortado with full cream despite never having made the drink before, nor it being present on their menu. Hot, rich, sweet, and caffeinated: just what I needed after my disastrous foray into the chocolate fair.

Pain Perdu
736 St Clair Ave W, Toronto, ON M6C 1B7

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