Patisserie Melanie, a French pastry shop that would fit right in on the streets of Paris, has opened in Hillcrest. Chef/owner Melanie Dunn, a former teacher at Crawford High School, spent several summer breaks attending classes at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris — eventually earning a Diplôme de Pâtisserie from the famed culinary school. After going through a permitting process under the California Homemade Food Act that allows producers to make and sell a variety of food items out of their homes, Dunn and husband Axel Schwarz have turned the ground floor of their live/work space on Park Boulevard, around the corner from Trust Restaurant, into a charming boutique.
Fusing European sensibilities and mid-century modern design, the retail-only shop sells vintage housewares and treasures for Francophiles as well as Dunn’s sweet creations. Made and packaged fresh daily, Patisserie Melanie’s specialities range from familiar French pastries to lesser-seen classics. There are macarons (current flavors include matcha, earl gray, chai and espresso but will rotate seasonally) as well as croissants, butter cookies, tarts, rum and vanilla-flavored cannelés, Breton kouign-amann and also seasonal fruit preserves. Chocolates, mini desserts and other cakes can also be custom ordered.
The shop is currently open Wednesday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.