Sugar Fix is a series profiling desserts in Vancouver asking bakery and café owners to divulge the three desserts that are most likely to fly off their shelves as well as which of their products are their personal favourites. First up are the top treats at TARTS bakery.
TARTS was created by two sisters Shawna and Lisa Coan. The bakery is focused solely on a myriad of delicious tarts. The women trace their love for tarts to their childhood. Their signature raspberry macaroon tart is “the tart that started it all.” It is reminiscent of their mother’s baking. Shawna and Lisa are all smiles as they proudly recount anxiously waiting for their mother’s prized raspberry tart to set so that they could dig in.
Their love of baking was rekindled when they started exploring Parisian bakeries. This led them to start their own bakery back home in September 2012. The sisters share a similar vision and a purposeful desire to recreate the fresh, flaky tarts they fell in love with during their stay in Europe and longed for far after their return to Vancouver. The large print of the Eiffel tower in their bakery pays homage to their adventures. The women indulged in recurrent trips to Parisian bakeries for famous tarts. This experience ultimately inspired them to turn their dreams into an exciting reality.
TARTS is a small, yet charming bakery that sells an impressive array of both savory and sweet tarts. The three tarts Shawna and Lisa urge Vancity Buzz readers to try are the:
- Chocolate cheesecake brownie tart
- Fruit and vanilla bean custard tart
- Raspberry macaroon tart
I had the opportunity to try a few tartlets. The raspberry macaroon tartlet was delectable, an undoubtedly perfect pairing of sweet raspberry jam and coconut coupled with flaky pastry – this dessert is an explosion of flavors. It is, however, still tame enough to have more than just a few bites.
Another clear winner is the butter pecan tartlet. The creamy filling is a stellar combination of brown sugar and butter. The filling is not runny but is rather firm and sticky making it a rich and decadently sinful treat.
The lemon tartlet was the only dessert that was slightly disappointing. The lemon filling lacked the unmistakable tartness of lemon. What I had hoped to be a mini dollop of creamy meringue on top of the tartlet was actually overwhelmingly sweet, crisp and hollow.
That being said, my criticisms are minor. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit and I cannot say enough good things about the quality of TARTS tarts. These tarts are simultaneously crispy, flaky and moist. I may have to go back to try the brownie cheesecake tart, a competitor in the Vancouver Foodster cheesecake challenge. By the looks of it, the cheesecake tart is a seemingly worthy contender. I’m sure their mother is beaming with pride.
1509 West Broadway
Monday to Wednesday: 11 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Thursday and Friday: 11 a.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Saturday: 11 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Sundays and Holidays: Closed
Written by Sunita Bassra. Connect with Sunita on Twitter at @sunita_bassra.