By Kristi Alexandra
Tucked away just behind Burnaby’s landmark shopping epicentre, Metrotown, where there’s no shortage of food to wares, is a small culinary enclave to satisfy any sweet tooth.
Beresford Street, between Dow and Willingdon Avenues, is home to several cafes boasting homemade sweets with the saccharine quality of authenticity. From bubble tea and waffles, to gourmet soups, fresh pastries and handmade chocolates, this gastronomic haven is the gourmand’s secret gem — it’s a place to dine, sip, and study in relative quiet just steps away from the bustling crowds.
EStEA Café | 4466 Beresford St.
EStEA Cafe is the eatery to frequent whether you want to stay for five minutes or a few hours. The quaint cafe recalls a Riverdale favorite, Pop’s Chocklit Shoppe, with a modern Taiwanese influence. Seating less than 20, the cafe has an ambiance as adorable as its treats – with spiraling pink art adorning the walls. Bring a date to sit down and share the shop’s staple: A Bubble Waffle cup with ice cream ($6.75), and a side of bubble tea and cakes. If you’re looking for more of a full meal deal, the eatery also serves up fresh hot pot, Taiwanese chicken and rice dishes, and braised beef noodle soup. That meal would not be complete without starters, for which the shop offers up seaweed takoyaki and fish cakes, among others.
Fondway Café | 4462 Beresford St.
Just a shop over from EStEA Cafe is another haunt for tea drinkers with a sweet tooth. Brunch, lunch, snacks, and desserts are a hot commodity in this woodsy but industrial cafe. Decorated with expertly placed knick-knacks and curios, Fondway Cafe has the homey vibe that welcomes coffee drinking students and the office lunch crowd. Daily homemade soups include the pumpkin chicken, clam chowder, Mediterranean vegetable, and French onion with a croissant, coffee, or pastry on the side. For more sweet toothers, there are combos–aptly named “Waffle Parties”– like the chocolate and banana or the matcha red bean paired with drinks, salads, and more.
For those who like to pick and choose, there are free-standing desserts like fluffy cheesecakes and creme brulee, and pre-wrapped sandwiches and fresh pastries for the grab-and-go lunch crew.
Mon Paris Patisserie | 4396 Beresford St.
You’ve never had chocolate like this before. This Parisian-style confectionary shop knows the meaning of indulgence, and you can taste it in their handcrafted chocolates. With flavours like raspberry balsamic ganache to the earl grey infused dark chocolate, even the healthiest of eaters can spare an indiscretion for these treats. Box up some chocolate gems in pairs of 5, 9, and 12, or snag a few to enjoy in the shop with a stunning view of the Eiffel Tower mural. Besides some seriously rich chocolates, dessert lovers can pick up individual-sized cakes, and the ever-trendy (and oh-so-soft) macarons. The ambiance calls for a stay that’s akin to the patisserie’s treats: small, sweet, and thoroughly enjoyable.