Indulge your seasonal sweet tooth at Bel Café

With the holiday season just around the corner, Vancouver’s Bel Café (801 West Georgia Street) has added a number of seasonal items to its menu. At a media preview on November 20, pastry chef Wayne Kozinko introduced his Christmas-themed creations: cookies, fruit cake, macarons, and the pièce de résistance—a festive bûche de noel.

This year, Bel Café patrons can choose from two speciality cookies. The spiced hazelnut sable cookie ($10 for pack of eight) is chewy and dense, with aromatic notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Meanwhile, the vanilla ginger shortbread ($13.80 for 12) is sugar-coated and buttery but surprisingly light. To help wash down a cookie—or two—Bel Café offers seasonal beverages ($3.50), such as spiced eggnog lattes and caramel whipping cream-topped hot apple cider. If you’re really feeling festive, spiked holiday drinks, including rum eggnog lattes and vanilla grappa caffè corretto are also available.

Bel Café’s Christmas fruit cake and spiced hazelnut sable cookies.

To wow dinner guests this season, bring home Bel Café’s Christmas fruit cake or bûche de noel (yule log). The densely fruit-and-nut-packed cake ($16.80 for 1 pound) is topped with a creamy marzipan icing, and a dominant flavour of apricots means it isn’t too sweet, even for guests who “don’t do dessert”. The bûche de noel ($33 to $50 depending on size), on the other hand, is truly a dessert-lover’s dream. The fluffy, creamy cake is available in two flavours: dark chocolate, raspberry, and vanilla, or milk chocolate, walnut, and caramel poached pears.

Other holiday-themed offerings include green and red peppermint macarons ($2 each), three flavours of truffles ($13.40 for six), and gift baskets ($70) that include gourmet treats from Bel Café, honey by local beekeeper Mellifera Bees, and Noble syrups and vinegars.

You can follow Michelle da Silva on Twitter at twitter.com/michdas.

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