The Power of Payard
If you’re looking for something sweet in Las Vegas, head to Caesars Place and immerse yourself in a one-of-a-kind culinary hotspot devised and perfected by French pastry chef Francois Payard.
Payard Patisserie & Bistro is a chocolate shop, coffee bar and restaurant all rolled into one. It’s especially popular for breakfast and lunch and while the Lobster Benedict, Brioche French Toast and Cuban Press sandwich are all delicious, you’ll find it hard to resist not skipping ahead to dessert.
The pastry menu is dedicated to cakes and tarts, including the “Chocolate Decadence” – an indulgent work of art made with chocolate mousse, chocolate sable on flourless chocolate cake, chocolate cremeux and tiny pieces of crunchy sugar known as feuilletin.
There’s also a variety of ice cream sandwiches in flavors such as salted caramel and passionfruit cheesecake. The ice cream, sorbet or gelato is served between Payard’s signature macarons.
If you’re short on time, you can’t go wrong with a box of European inspired chocolates to go.
For a more savory option, the Croque Madame is hard to beat. The French twist on a traditional ham and cheese sandwich comes with slices of Swiss and Gruyere between brioche bread and topped with an egg sunny-side-up.
Payard has taken an unconventional approach to his work over the years. His Caesars Palace outpost features a chocolate clock that not only displays nine different time zones, but also dispenses free truffles every 15 minutes. So listen for the bell and keep your eyes peeled.
However, not everything is so inexpensive. Back in 2012 the restaurant introduced a drink called the “Grandiose” with a $50 price tag, and made with Paul Goerg Champagne, Chateau Nairac Deuxieme Crus and white truffle foam while topped with caviar and a real gold flake.
Earlier this year, for Macaron Day on March 20, Payard released a limited edition do-it-yourself baking kit called the “Makecaron” that was sold online and in-shop for just one day only. The product gave dessert fans an opportunity to try and create versions of Payard’s macarons at home.
The possibilities for the chef are endless. He also has dining spots in Japan, Korea and New York – where he first built his reputation creating desserts for Eric Ripert and Daniel Boulud.
You can be sure that whatever Payard has planned next, it is sure to be delicious.
Rob Kachelriess is the Managing Editor of Vegas2LA magazine. He’s also a News Producer for KVVU Fox5 Las Vegas and the Las Vegas writer for Thrillist.