Cream Caramel & Matcha @ Chicco Coffee and Dessert Bar

I had wanted to go to Chicco Coffee and Dessert Bar for a long time, ever since my less than satisfactory experience at Aoyama's. It's a bit out of way for me, and I always find myself too full to eat dessert whenever I'm in that area. Plus, it's pretty expensive. Fortunately for me, I found their ad in Klip magazine, the free coupon magazine from Daiso. Their parfaits were 50% off on August 13th and 20th! (I tweeted about this, so don't say I didn't tell you all!)

We headed out there just for the parfaits! Chicco is actually pretty quiet normally, and there was comparatively more people than normally. Still, there weren't as many as I had expected. Being a tiny café, the special was only applicable to parfaits for take-out. The interior is quite cozy, with their old Chinese style furniture. Combined with their handmade ceramic pieces hanging decoratively on the wall, I liked it.

After a lot of contemplation because everything looked so delicious, I got the cream caramel parfait ($7.10).  These parfaits are much more intricate than the ones at Aoyama, for sure.  At the top sat two two small squares of caramel pudding.  I've tried making my own following cookingwithdog's recipe, which has been somewhat successful, though this one here is smoother and firmer.  I also liked the hedgehog gelato (which really felt like gelato), but I felt the portion was too small! Underneath is whipping cream and strawberry jello -- the jello was not too sweet.  I'm thinking they might be Japanese branded ones.  After a generous layer of cornflakes, the gelato in the middle is supposed to be maple walnut gelato, but I don't really remember how it tasted, so it probably wasn't that special.  At the very bottom are sponge cake squares, even though they sort of look like croutons.  They were actually really dry, but I was smart and I mixed it with the gelato and whipped cream. This combination was actually really delicious.  Overall, I liked my caramel pudding parfait, though I really wished mine had mochi in it! I originally thought there was, but I guess I was just being greedy.

Charles ordered the green tea parfait ($7.10), which I had also thought about ordering.  (Scratch that, I thought about ordering all of them.)  This one had one piece of green tea mousse cake on top, along with mochi rice balls and red bean paste.  I was a bit jealous since this one had both the mousse cake and rice ball.  I would've sacrificed one caramel pudding piece for a rice ball.  For gelato, they used green tea gelato on top and vanilla gelato in the middle.  I really like how Chicco uses their different gelatos to make the parfait come together nicely, rather than using random flavours.  This one had green tea jello, cornflakes, and the same spongecake.  Instead of eating those three layers together, he saved the sponge cake for last and regretted it because it was really that dry.

Overall, it was very, very delicious (except for the spongecake which is only delicious if you eat it strategically).  However, a few things disappointed me.  Not only is the price of $8 ($7.10+HST) pretty steep in my eyes, but it's not even served in a glass! When you charge at that price, at least make it fancy and serve it in a nice cold glass.  I'd probably be more content paying that amount if it were better presented, since I willingly pay for cake at that price (I don't know why I do, now that I think back).  That being said, I might go back since it is one of the better parfaits I've tried in Vancouver (I haven't tried Dots yet).

More: Good Eat - Yum

Chicco Coffee and Dessert Bar
1504 Robson St
Vancouver, BC
(604) 633-1286
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Hmm... some cornflakes, a spoonful of gelato, whipped cream and cake bits for $8? Doesn't sound tempting...

Besides I think this could easily be reproduced at home. You should try it and take pics! :)

@krispymilk: agreed about it being easy to make, though I have to say that this one is a bit more challenging than the one from Aoyama ;D

I'll give it a try someday... with my own chilled glass :D

Is that what a parfait is??? Haha, I've only experienced parfaits at Dairy Queen and they are really nothing special.

Sometimes I'll get a huge ramen bowl and throw stuff into it, I wonder if that's considered a parfait. I usually toss in ice cream, maybe a muffin or hunks of left over cake, cookies, fruits, cereal, milk, or just generally whatever I can find lying around. It's sort of like the Fried Rice of deserts =).

Peter, actually, what Chicco served as a parfait and/or what DQ serves as a parfait are technically parfait, though, as usual, it stretches the definition a little tiny bit. In a way, it is taking a tall glass and layering ice cream/soft serve/gelato, some sort fruits, whipped cream, nuts and so on. If it wasn't for the layering, you could have called it a sundae and would have worked pretty much the same way.

@KimHo: Thanks Kim for the explanation, saves me time wiki-ing!

@Peter: I usually don't eat ice cream at home! It's not safe for me to have these types of food in my house! And hope Kim's explanation helped!

Janice, as I have mentioned before, you should try places outside of Richmond and as well as different cuisines. Once you do so, your knowledge of food and different cuisines will expand exponentially. That's why people like Sherman and myself can answer a lot of these questions without having to resort to Wikipedia.

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