Amelie's French Bakery ~ Charlotte NC
On an evening stroll, we walked past Amelie’s…a French Bakery in downtown Charlotte (known as Uptown) and my heart skipped a beat. A French bakery? Surely, we must stop, taste, sample.
Only it was closed. Then closed when we went past again, and closed again, we just missed it each time. On our way out of town, we drove by one more time and SURPISE, Amelie’s was open! Come to find out, their NoDa location is open 24 hours and we could have gone every day, multiple times!
We popped into a parking spot on the corner of MLK and S. Tryon, and ran across the street, making it safely into Amelie’s a full 30 minutes before they closed on Sunday afternoon. Oh happy, Amelie’s pastry day! Inside, you will find a “Paris shabby chic” interior with many renditions of the Eiffel Tower, charming French items and you just wanted to pull up a chair, order one of their many espresso drinks and plop down with a book. With a 4 hour drive ahead, we should have tap-danced down the handcrafted espresso aisle, but alas, we abstained because it was hot and sultry. They recommended the iced lattes, but nothing quite says French pastry like a steaming espresso along with a luscious treat!
While they were sold out of most of their delightful pastries, desserts and sweet things, what we really wanted was there! Score! We spied my all time favorite éclairs, crème puffs and a highly recommended salted caramel brownie. We got one of each, along with an almond cake, and hotly debated on the orange macarons, but passed this trip. Our totally purchase was just under $10, what a deal.
Several gluten free options had tags in the case, including the orange macaron and a lovely coconutty macaroon. We had already blown our GF lifestyle so decided to go for the gold and try gluten, while we were contaminated. Can’t wait to return and do a full scale Gluten Free Review! Forgive our less than stellar photos - it appears my handy dandy foodie cam needs replacing!
Darting back across the street, jumping in the car for the long ride home, I was beyond happy looking at the adorable little sticker on the box. As soon as we got on the freeway, each pastry was cut in half and we had a perfect sample of each. Not quite the romantic scenario hoped for, on the patio in front of the bakery….
The crème puffs and éclair were both superb. Perfectly balanced flavors and textures with just the right amount of simple chocolate glaze, I was secretly thankful we found them as we left town. Filled with a lovely, smooth custard, rich and lightly sweet, they were both PERFECT. It is almost impossible to get a decent crème puff or éclair – they tend to be dry and burnt or sickly sweet or have such thick, goopy nasty hard chocolate, or some fake chemical tasting filling – I had almost given up on them. Amelie’s éclair was top notch in every way, even 30 min before closing! Best éclair in years!
The highly recommended (from a chef at a local farm to table restaurant) salted caramel brownie was extraordinary as well – a thin brownie with a layer of creamy salted caramel on top. Again, this delightful bakery captured the perfect texture and flavor combination. With a slightly crunchy brownie bottom and a beautiful layer of translucent, creamy caramel on top – each bite exploded in your mouth. Creamy, almost crunchy, sweet, yet slightly salted – it was perfection. Difficult to describe – impossible not to love. I wish we had purchased 10 of them, so I could capture the flavor and texture and make a GF version….but alas…
Can’t wait to return to Amelie’s French Bakery in Charlotte the next time we are there, and would love to review their pique-nique baskets, a romantic lunch for 2!
Amelie's French Bakery 330 S. Tryon St, Charlotte, NC, 28202. (Next to the Charlotte Visitors Center)
Open Monday-Friday 7:00am-6:00pm