The saying “the early bird gets the worm” often does not apply when it comes to bakeries. Probably the best instance would be Fondway Cafe, which partically had NOTHING available when I tried visiting them way back when because I was too early. More recently, there’s Marui Bakery, a popular Chinese bakery that has been receiving rave reviews for their egg tarts. Because they didn’t have a website on their own, I relied on the Internet for their hours. They were supposed to open at 10:00 am according to yelp, but 10:30 according to Zomato. Deciding to play on the safe side, I visited at 10:30. But of course, the Internet was wrong: their actual opening time was 11:00 am. *sigh*. So I ended up wandering down the aisles of the nearby London Drugs for 30 minutes.
Of course, when they did finally open, the bakery was still in the process of putting out their baked goods, and there wasn’t much available. I’ve got to admit, I was seriously quite annoyed. I mean if you’re going to open this late, could you not at least have your stuff ready when you open? The staff was very friendly however, and when I asked if they had any egg tarts available, they pulled some off of their cooling racks for me. They didn’t have any buns out yet, but they did have some cakes, which were more appealing to me anyways. I got their Sponge Cake, Fresh Mango Cake, Mixed Berry Hazelnut, and Tiramisu.
Egg Tart ($0.80?):
I came early, so I was able to get a tart that’s fresh out of the oven. The crust was fantastic in terms of texture: incredibly flaky and melted in my mouth. The filling was creamy, mildly sweet, and had a pleasant eggy flavour. Personally, I did find the flavours to be a bit subtle; I would have preferred the filling to be a tad sweeter, and the crust to have a bit of salt/sugar. It was still delicious however, and I can see why they are so popular.
Sponge Cake ($1.80):
The cake was very light and fluffy, and quite moist. As with all the other desserts, it was only mildly sweet. Personally, I did find it to be a bit plain and boring. It is still definitely one of the better sponge cakes that I’ve had, however.
Fresh Mango Cake ($4.30):
This consisted of two layers of sponge cake sandwiching a layer of cream and fresh mangos, and topped with more slices of mango. The cake itself was very light and fluffy. There were plenty of mango, which tasted fresh and had a great fragrance. While I personally would have preferred a bit more sweetness, I understand that’s not for everyone. This cake is quite light, and a great choice for those that can’t tolerate high levels of sweetness.
Mixed Berry Hazelnut ($4.50):
This consisted of a chocolate and berry flavoured mousse covering a layer of cake and wafer, and coated in a layer of chocolate ganache. Being a chocholic, this ended up being my favourite of the bunch. It is also the most “western” like of the desserts in that they didn’t hold back on the flavours: this was definitely sweet (though not overwhelming so, at least to me). The mousse was creamy and light, and studded with entire pieces of berries (I got some raspberries and blackberries). I loved the wafer, which lent a great crispness to contrast the creaminess of the mousse. Personally, I wasn’t sure if the chocolate flavour went well with the berries; I’d actually have just preferred a plain chocolate mousse myself. I was unable to detect any hazelnut flavour either. However, this is still a fantastic dessert, and I absolutely enjoyed it.
This consisted of a layer of coffee-flavoured cake, topped with cream, and dusted with cocoa powder. The cake was very moist and fluffy, and was bursting with coffee flavour. The cream was luscious, fresh and mildly sweet. This is certainly a delicious take on the classic dessert.
Even though I was quite annoyed about having to wait for 30 minutes, and not having much stuff to choose from when the bakery did finally open, I’ve got to say that the food at Marui Bakery is certainly quite good and worth the wait. Their prices are a bit higher for a Chinese bakery, but certainly more than affordable. Overall, I strongly recommend checking this place out. Just don’t go too early however as they may not have all of their goods out yet (probably noon would be the optimal time).