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The History of Patisserie Valerie

Friday, 06 Jan 2017

Have you ever wondered how Patisserie Valerie began? How the scrumptious handcrafted cakes you enjoy today and have loved for the past 90 years came to be?

It was in 1926 that Belgian born Madame Valerie opened the doors of the first Patisserie Valerie in London’s Soho. She opened this store with the mission to introduce fine continental patisserie to the English, and it was with her sheer skills and determination that she achieved this goal.

Patisserie Valerie was an instant hit. Madame Valerie’s delicious cakes and pastries became the epitome of indulgence. This was especially the case for her Cortina Gateau which was one of her very first creations which remains a staple of our menu today. This decadent Chocolate sponge is layered with fresh cream, chocolate cream and is finished with white Belgian chocolate. The perfect embodiment of traditional technique and timeless style.

However the path to success was not a smooth one, as Madame Valerie faced turmoil when her Frith Street store was bombed by the Luftwaffe during the Second World War. Yet this did not stop her, and she went on to set up shop around the corner in Old Compton Street where her amazing legacy continues to this day in our Soho branch. Since then the company has been brought by Patisserie Holdings Plc and now has stores which stretch across the United Kingdom from Aberdeen to Portsmouth, from Belfast to Norwich.

The company has continued to create a variety of celebration cakes and slices honouring the skills and techniques employed by Madame Valerie herself. In 2016 to celebrate 90 years of Patisserie Valerie we held a competition to create the ‘Madame Valerie Gateau’. We received thousands of entries from members of the general public who submitted wild and imaginative cake concoctions. Our winner; Katie Bignell wowed us with her Chocolate, Honeycomb and Caramel creation, which we have since come to know and love as our new Limited Edition Madame Valerie Gateau. So why not join us and indulge in our delicious Madame Valerie Gateau and truly experience a touch of the 1920s.


behind the scenes | cake making | cake history | celebration cakes | Patisserie Valerie | Madame Valerie

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