This is the fourth of four reviews of some of the best breakfast spots in the Sacramento area. Julian’s Patisserie offers takeout, considered an “essential service” during Gov. Gavin Newsom’s stay-at-home order amid the coronavirus pandemic.
After working in Las Vegas at some of the top resorts in the world, Julian Perrigo-Jimenez opened Julian’s Patisserie and Cafe (6610 Folsom-Auburn Rd., Folsom) three years ago. The cafe is along a popular bike trail in Folsom, which makes it a go-to-spot for bikers and residents around the neighborhood. So, it can get very busy, and March 8 was no exception.
Upon arrival, I encountered a wave of other customers waiting to get a taste of Julian’s famous crepes and other breakfast items.
One allure was watching the chefs working in the large, open kitchen through the big glass windows. From grating chocolate on eclairs to torching creme brulees, they created a hectic scene.
Behind the mob of hungry people and the chaos in the kitchen, the cafe was decorated with an obvious French charm. Old rustic French pictures accented the light blue walls, and the casual jazz in the background made one only imagine what it would be like to enjoy a nice breakfast in rural France. And who could forget the aroma? Walking through the door, I was captivated by the smell of freshly made delicacies.
My sister luckily found a table, and we sat down almost instantly. Even with the long line, the cashiers up front were remarkably fast, and we ordered our food in minutes. We waited about 10 minutes for our food, but it seemed like 20 with all the commotion surrounding us.
First up was the avocado toast ($8.75). I chose a French baguette, and my sister selected cracked wheat sourdough. The toast was topped with mashed avocados and sunflower seeds. Mine was drizzled with a pomegranate vinaigrette, but my sister ordered hers plain.
The soft avocados and lightly toasted baguette provided great balance. This, mixed with the sweet-and-sour component of the pomegranate vinaigrette, really rounded out the dish.
My only complaint was the avocado mash was bland despite the vinaigrette.
The next dish – Julian’s famous strawberry chocolate crepe ($8.75) –- was much better. With its golden brown edges, chocolate hazelnut spread practically oozing from the sides and powdered sugar drizzled among the toasted almonds on top, I was nearly drooling just at the sight of it.
And the crepe tasted even better than it looked.
The hazelnut spread was evenly dispersed in the crepe, so I always tasted enough chocolate, and the strawberries provided an extra burst of fresh sweetness.
And don’t even get me started about the crepe itself. The crispy exterior followed up by the soft interior was the perfect vessel for the gooey chocolate spread. The crepe seemingly melted in my mouth with its soft, airy consistency and was balanced with the crunchiness of the roasted almonds.
The only thing wrong with the crepe was an overload of almonds. I seemingly got a mouthful of almonds with every bite. Nonetheless, it was an accommodation I was willing to make.
My sister, a self-proclaimed sweets connoisseur, said: “This was the best crepe I’ve ever had. And I don’t think I’ll ever look at crepes the same way again.”
We both washed this down with freshly squeezed lemonade ($3). This came in a cute little mason jar that topped off the whole experience. We left with a full stomach and a smile on our faces.
If you haven’t figured it out yet, I highly recommend Julian’s to everyone who loves great food or to those without plans to visit France.
—By Jacob Chand