Greg Guillem, Owner
Our mission has always been to delight our customers by treating them to the true, authentic taste of French macarons. When we started our first café 13 years ago, many of our customers were unfamiliar with macarons or confused them with macaroons. We devoted ourselves to educating consumers about what a true French macaron should taste like; the first bite being a surprise, the second bite is the flavor, and the third bite is a pleasure. All adding up to create a mouthful of heaven. After 13 years, it is still our mission to connect with our customers and encourage them to experience the authentic, delicious taste of macarons.
Our macarons are the star of the show! We have more than twenty-five flavors, including seasonal flavors and limited time offerings during holidays. Our customers sometimes start with flavors such as Madagascar Vanilla or Belgian Chocolate and then move on to more exotic flavors such as Blackcurrant Chocolate, Mango, or Rose. Other than our macarons that are made with premium, gluten-free ingredients, and no preservatives, we are known for our French gelato, classic French pastries, handmade gourmet chocolates, and European style beverages. Our loyal customers frequently stop in for coffee every morning and leave with a box of macarons.
The most important decision we have made is to use natural, premium ingredients that cost significantly more. For example, we use real vanilla beans rather than imitation vanilla. Of course, we do not know if some customers would be able to tell the difference, but it is very important to us not to sacrifice quality by using cheaper ingredients. There is really no way to speed up the production of macarons unless we choose to explore automation, but it has never been something we have been interested in doing. The fact that we have handmade macarons prepared daily by French chefs is what distinguishes Le Macaron from competitors.
Macarons are very delicate confections that must be climate-controlled to ensure quality. We couldn’t function without our storage and display cases because the temperature must be always maintained around 41 degrees. Likewise, our gelato case is one of the most important pieces of equipment in the shop because gelato must be maintained ideally at zero degrees to meet quality and health regulations. In addition, the high-end Lavazza Coffee Machine is highly prized because it ensures that each cup served is consistently excellent, no matter who prepares it.
Secret of Success
I believe connecting with our customers and getting to know them has played a big part in our success. We learn about them by starting conversations instead of merely doing a business transaction. In turn, we have the opportunity to tell them all about how Le Macaron started, how we moved here and brought the best techniques from France and encourage them to try our macarons and pastries. Our location at Celebration is amazing because we get a lot of curious tourists, including many from Europe who are familiar with macarons and pleased to find them here. We have been successful because we make both locals and tourists feel welcome. The management, including my wife, has worked hard to create the ambiance of a Parisian café with colorful, cheerful décor so that we have a welcoming atmosphere.
We are continually innovating and experimenting with new flavors of macarons, pastries, chocolates, and gelato. For instance, we started with one flavor with eclairs and now we have nine flavors. We are always testing new flavors and products at our confectionery. Another thing we are doing is franchising to bring the Le Macaron experience to everyone in the United States. We have more than seventy cafes now across America, and in 2024 we will be seeing even more stores opening from coast to coast. It is an exciting time for Le Macaron!
For more info, visit https://lemacaron-us.com/
(This article appeared in the Winter 2024 issue of Pastry Arts Magazine)