The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Galettes @ Le Bretagne, Tokyo

Galettes are savoury French crêpes made with buckwheat flour and contains various fillings, the most popular type being galette complète which comprises of egg, ham and cheese. I must admit I'd never heard of galettes prior to coming to Tokyo, but it's no surprise that I'd be introduced to everything French in Japan since the Japanese are quite French-ophilic. I've been curious to try out these savoury crêpes for awhile now, and galettes came up in my internet search on where to bring Kim (visiting from the Noto) for lunch last weekend. Galettes seem like it would make good brunch, and we found ourselves in Omotesando seated inside a crêperie called Le Bretagne. At my request, Kim's former host sister, Fumi, came along to lunch - we'd first met Kim's gorgeous friend earlier this year when she came with us to Tokyo Disneyland. She lived in France for four years before returning to Japan in December. It's pretty cool hearing a Japanese speaking English with a French accent :)

You can choose from the menu an impressive variety of more than 20 types of galettes with prices ranging from 1000yen to 1700yen depending on the type of filling. Also available are seasonal specials. There are also many types of sweet crêpes to choose for dessert or for an indulgent sweet brunch. Apparently, apple cider (of the alcohol variety) is a good accompaniment to galettes, which was good enough reason for Kim and friend to order a sweet cider. Rob and I, being non-alcoholic drinkers, each had a tiny sip from Kim's cup, and I thought it tasted just like non-alcoholic apple cider but with a touch of alcohol, if that makes any sense.

We started out with a plate of Assorted Fromage (1600yen) which included chèvre (goat's cheese), a relatively mild blue cheese, a soft cheese that was either camembert or brie (hey, I don't claim to be a cheese connoiseur!), and a mild yellow hard cheese. Accompanying the cheese were dried figs, walnuts, slices of fruit bread and plain baguette. I like mild cheese, so my favourite was the un-named yellow hard cheese which was tasty and creamy but not too strong. The brie/camembert was nice, but Rob wondered why I avoided eating the mould rind which he thinks is the best part of the cheese. The blue cheese was surprisingly mild and palatable whilst the goat's cheese was a bit too strong for my liking. Even though there were four of us, we had trouble finishing the cheese plate.

Assorted Fromage:

We all ordered something different, and everyone had a taste of everyone else's plate. Unfortunately I don't have the exact titles of our order because the French waiter did not let me to even take note of the names and description of our orders (he didn't want to risk any other restaurants copying their menu, but he allowed me to take photos of the food *rolls eyes* - I mean these are simple crêpes which would be easy to replicate just from look and taste!). Kim ordered a Sunny-side-up Egg, Cheese, Ham and Spinach Galette (~1200yen) - nice idea, but the flavour didn't do much for me and the spinach would be better off on its own. Fumi chose the Ham, Cheese and Champignon Galette, (~1200yen) - a simple but very nice combination. Is there anything that mushrooms do not go well with?

Spinach Galette and Mushroom Galette:

Rob's order was the Nordique Galette (~1700yen) which was smoked salmon with sour cream and chives. Simple but tasty, and adding anything else would distract the palate from enjoying the smoky taste of the salmon. I got the Provençale Galette (~1700yen) and the fillings were a sunny side up egg, tomatoes, ham, cheese, anchovies and onion confit. It's a lot of ingredients in one galette, but they all worked well together. The ingredient that made the dish stand out was the onion confit, which was sweet like caramelised onion. Rob and I agreed that this was our favourite out of all four we tasted.

Nordique Galette and Provençale Galette:

Each serving was pretty large, and most of us were pretty full by the time we finished everything. Kim wanted to bring us to a nearby gelateria which she thought was good, but Rob wanted to try at least one of the sweet crêpes. No one else was confident that we could fit in a dessert crêpe as well as gelato, so it fell to Rob to choose a sweet crêpe for everyone to try. Not surprisingly, Rob chose Chocolate Crêpe (~1300yen) which held a scoop of rich chocolatey ice cream, two scoops of whipped cream and a generous drizzle of dark chocolate syrup. I won't deny the fact that it was really good!

Chocolate Crêpe:

Overall, it was a good experience. It would've been nice to have been able to take notes for the sake of my blogging, but at least I could take photos. Le Bretagne is quite popular for lunch on the weekend, so either come early to snag a table, or make reservations (we went early).


  1. These look soooooooo good ... yum yum yum!!!
    Is this the place next to a mini stop in the backstreets of Omotesando with outdoor seating?
    Was the chocolate crepe normal flour or buckwheat too?

  2. It was so yummy! And yes, this is the one next to the MiniStop combini in Omotesando. The choc crepe was the typical crepe (with normal flour), but there is also a small selection of sweet buckwheat crepe in the dessert menu.

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