The Parlour Royale. A sweet review.

A Sweet Review: Baked Treats, Chocolates & Hand-Crafted Coffee

Sharing a the love of food and trying new things is something I cherish and enjoy doing with my friends. And even more so when it’s at a new spot. Cuz, we literally live for this ish…

This soon to be café*, is a collaboration between local makers Cocobel Chocolate, Roastel Coffee and Jamie Gerard Cakes. They offer a yummilicious selection of baked treats, chocolates and you can pick up locally roasted coffee to make the perfect dessert or if you’re like me…for food for breakfast as well.

I visited this heavenly space at few months ago and have been meaning to blog about it ever since. But in light of the fact that they are converting to a “dine-in” space, I figured no time like the present to share some of the highlights of my visit.

*Unfortunately, they are closed for renovations at the moment, however, they will reopen to the public soon.

The Parlour Royale: 222-1090, 38 Royal Road, San Fernando.

Attention to details could be seen everywhere.

Samples of their treats for us to nibble on.

Give me all the chocolates!

 

Stand outs

Everything we sampled and took home.  The chocolates are made from local cocoa and are handcrafted with love. The coffee is from local small batch roaster, Roastel. And the cakes, oh those decadent cakes are also whipped up in house. Listen people, life is way too short not to have dessert, and I say go get it while it’s hot!

I bought some macarons to have at home and I’m glad I did…because it would have been embarrassing for anyone to witness the enjoyment a single  meringue-based cookie can bring a person.

I will be back for

The coffee and all the dessert things. HA! And the thrill of dining-in and sharing the love of food with my friends.

Things to note

There was no WiFi at the time of my visit and no seating. But that is about to change with the much needed and I’m sure anticipated renovations. So if you are in need of little coffee and dessert (which I am always down for) it’s worth the visit.

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I just love discovering little cafes in and around Port of Spain. It not only gives me options when I choose not to brown-bag it to work but it’s also a welcome respite when I’m having a stressful day at the office.

Enter: Novella Café. Open since September last year, I like the fact that they are not that new to the scene. After almost a year, they would have had a chance to settle in and sort out any teething problems that comes with being a new cafe in Downtown, Port of Spain.

I was immediately struck by the decor, which is mix of modern with quaint little touches apparent in the little owl figurines and owl themed decor dotted through-out the café.

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Don’t mind if I do!

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Chocolate Macarons FTW!

While the cafe does not offer a lot of seating options, that did not stop the steady stream of patrons who visited while I was there. Take-out seems to be quite popular with the lunchtime crowd.

Thankfully, we – my cousin and I, were able to score a seat at one of the tables and I was able to enjoy my coffee treat comfortably. Cappuccino and macaron get in my tummy. This sweet treat was particularly good!

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The menu offers affordable options: salads, subs, smoothies, dessert bites and coffee. For lunch, I had the California Salad – since I’ve been California dreaming lately. I’m still bummed that I missed BlogHer16. And it really doesn’t help that all the reports have been superlative thus far.

The California is an interesting mix of lettuce, red onions, cranberries and arugula topped with walnuts and feta cheese.

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My cousin and I chatted about vacation plans and how we should stop clock-watching at lunch and just enjoy the coffee and each other’s company. What’s funny, is that when I returned to the office, I had one of my most productive days for of the week. Just proves that a midday coffee break goes a long way towards maintaining my sanity and improving my productivity.

Find Novella Cafe, Monday through Friday – 7 am – 3pm at 87-89 Frederick St., Port of Spain. (Please note: They will be closed from August 15th until August 29th. They will open on August 30th but will be closed for August 31st – Independence Day.)

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Years ago, I read a book and the only thing I remember about the story was one main character detail: the guy’s need for a cup of Turkish coffee. Being a coffee lover myself, I totally understood. Thinking at the time that it was probably some special Turkish treat, it was noted and filed away for future reference.

A recent post on my ‘go-to’ blog for all things foodie in Trinidad: TriniChow highlighting a new cafe serving Turkish coffee, brought back the memory of the curiosity I felt after reading about this type coffee all those years ago. I happened to be in the area this weekend and decided to stop in. I was not disappointed.
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Turkish coffee is best enjoyed after your meal and it pairs well with a sweet treat. You DO NOT add milk to your coffee…which was fine by me. You also do not add sugar after it is poured in your cup. Sugar is added up front. Since I was having it with a sweet treat anyway, I chose to have mine with just a little sugar and it was still good.

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Tiny cup of joy.

The delicious blend of finely ground coffee, sugar and spices is served in a long-handled pot made of brass, which you pour into a tiny cup. Though, the serving is small, the coffee is not meant to be rushed. Sip. Savor. Linger…over great conversation and a yummy sweet treat. I enjoyed my coffee with a bit of chocolate cake.

Layali Cafe offers a few options for sweet treats and quick bites. If you’re a coffee lover, it’s worth checking out.

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Thick layer of coffee left at the bottom of the cup.

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Second cup of joy.