D’Alice is a coffee shop that is designed with an Alice-in-Wonderland theme, serving up French pastries of all sorts. While the drinks and food are quite a treat, most visitors spend the majority of their time here taking pictures of everything, even the bathroom door! It is the only coffee shop I know that take reservations, because it is that popular.
D’Alice was one of our impetuous finds. We didn’t plan for it. We happened to drive by when these two teenagers were snapping photos of the window display, which feature scattered macarons in different pretty pastel colors.
Of course, whenever macarons are involved, I’m such a big sucker. Plus, the place looks very pretty from the outside. So we find ourselves shuffling through the narrow doorway, but not before we take a picture of the display too.
Stepping inside, and I immediately adore the place. The interior is not quite what you would expect from an Alice in Wonderland theme. It’s not dark, not chaotic. It’s actually the opposite of it. Very feminine, bright, and chic. The good thing is everything Alice-related is added here and there, with a good sense of humour.
The place was full, so we have to wait a little, and can’t choose where to seat. The bike parking guy gave us a card with a phone number to call for reservation next time. Apparently, this place fills up quickly on the weekends.
While we waited for the order, it was fun trying to spot the little details from the story that is smartly hidden throughout the shop.
Once we settled down, our order came out promptly. Even though the place was filled, most people spend more time taking pictures, and therefore, service is quite fast and attentive.
A ordered the hot chocolate because not only it comes with marshmallows, they were also blow-torched marshmallows! The fluffy things were daintily set on a separate plate before we dunk them all into the hot brown sweetness.
My tea came out in its own fancy way, in a tea cup, accompanied by a big saucer. White and brown sugar is given on the table. I have never seen brown sugar in a Vietnamese coffee shop!
Here is another cool coffee shop in Hanoi that we frequent.
Then came another thing I haven’t seen in Vietnam before. My tea order came with an egg timer, so that I know how long to brew my tea for! Although it should have said “strong – medium – light”, and I actually am not that much of a picky tea drinker, it is still quite a fun thing to have with your tea order!
Of course, we would never skip desserts. Mr. Frugal got a slice of the Opera cake, when I happily enjoyed my Rasberry and Creme Cheese Macarons!
The Opera cake was ok, just the right amount of sweetness. A liked it a lot. Although I think it could have been a bit fresher, as the sponge cake was actually a little stale.
My macarons, on the other hand, is surprisingly good! I have been attempting to make these at home many times, so I can tell you all the things that could possibly go wrong with these little ladies. However, the macarons looked incredibly good, flat top, raised feet, and when you bite into them, there is no hollow space! The texture was spot on, a little chewy, and melt-in-your-mouth soft. I also note that even though the texture is right, the taste is much less sweet than a real French macarons, probably adapted to suit Vietnamese palate better. Nonetheless, they are such great treats!
Place: D’ Alice Dessert – Bakery – Tea House
Address: 89 Trieu Viet Vuong, Hanoi (Google Map)
Phone: 043 974 9826
English Menu: Yes
English speaking staff: Yes
Price: VND 60,000 for Hot Choco, VND 55,000 for tea, VND 20,000 for a macaron, VND 85,000 for Opera cake.
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