Authentic Macarons? Merci Beaucoup!

Authentic Macarons? Merci Beaucoup!


large display of macarons

If you are a frequent explorer of Los Angeles, determined to find the best the city has to offer, a simple Yelp search for pastries will lead you to a shop called ‘lette, the local’s favorite macaron shop in all of Beverly Hills.

three boxes of macarons

‘lette’s glass storefront is splashed with images of macarons in lively colors. The design is minimalist but evokes such a strong brand. When you walk in, a wall of freshly baked macarons envelops your senses and before you are hundreds of the little French pastries.

‘lette Macarons was opened by France transplant Paulette Koumetz in 2007 and currently has seven locations in southern California; with the flagship store being in Beverly Hills. Koumetz moved to America from France with her husband Gerard and was disappointed at the lack of authenticity of the macarons available upon her arrival.

In a town like Beverly Hills, it’s rare that the owner of a boutique would actually be present in her own store. Koumetz’s presence shows a serious commitment to customer service and business. Because of this, locals continue to frequent the business because of the love they feel when they purchase their macarons.

Alexandra Berru is the social media and communications director for ‘lette. Berru is a UCLA graduate with a major in mass communications and minor in French. During her time at UCLA she traveled abroad to France where she fell in love with the culture as well as the pastries, her favorite being macarons.

lette storefront

On a typical day Berru begins by logging into all the social media accounts and checking correspondents with bloggers and customers. Berru oversees press for each of the ‘lette locations. Each one of the locations is privately owned and is not a franchise.

“We have agreements with all of the locations, the aesthetic must maintain ‘lette standard, all products sold must be ‘lette, social media accounts are run by myself, except the Instagram accounts which are really location specific,” says Berru.

The recipe for ‘lette macarons really is different than any other macaron in the country. When Koumetz came up with the idea to launch a macaron shop in Los Angeles, she consulted her friend and business partner, Christophe Michalak and together, they developed the original twelve flavors.

At the age of 40, Michalak, became one of the most recognized professional pastry chefs in the world. In 2005, he won the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie (The World Cup of Pastry!), a competition started in the late 80s to showcase the very best in the world of pastry chefs.macaron pops

The original twelve flavors remain in their original recipe and are available daily, while seasonal flavors roll out at various times during the year.

Executive pastry chef Gerard Koumetz, Paulette’s husband, has developed the seasonal flavors, the latest being blueberry which was developed as both a flavor of the season and a request by customers for a truly blue macaron during baby shower season.

All of the macarons are baked fresh in the Beverly Hills kitchen by Koumetz. In its inaugural years, the macarons were baked in the back of the Beverly Hill storefront, but in recent years they have had to expand and now run a kitchen down the street where thousands of macarons are prepared daily.

When Paulette first moved to Los Angeles, one of the spots she frequented was Sprinkles cupcakes, the world’s first only-cupcakes store. Through some investigation, Paulette discovered that the team responsible for Sprinkles was The ALM Project (Andrea Lenardin Madden AIA).

Andrea Madden is the lead designer at ALM. Her education in architecture, supplemented by professional studies in graphic design, industrial design and fashion enables her to create unique design solutions.

The design of ‘lette is literally award winning. In its inaugural year ‘lette was presented the 2007 City of Beverly Hills Architectural Design Award. And in 2008 the business was the recipient of International Design (I.D.) Magazine’s design award in the environment category.

While there are no future locations in store for ‘lette at the moment, the future is extremely bright. With seven locations open since 2007, a great team behind the brand, and an interest for macarons in major national cities, the brand is sure to leave a lasting taste in the mouths of America.

If you would like to indulge in one of these decadent pastries, stop by the Beverly Hills store at 9466 Charleville Blvd at Beverly Dr.  Beverly Hills, CA 90212, or visit lettemacarons.com.

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