Strolling around Akaroa on a Sunday morning in search for something to eat for brunch were limited to the local four square (large diary/small supermarket), a pub or this small boutique french deli. We decided to go in as this looked half decent. L’Escargot Rouge-Deli is a small french cafe serving french inspired brunch items and New Zealand counter food.
The deli over looks the Akaroa Harbour with a couple of tables located along the window at the front and remaining seating at the back. One may find it a struggle to find seating during peak times.
Our brunch items came as and when they were ready. The warmed croissants with jam came first. I was expecting some nice French jam but it was the prepackaged Craig’s jam. The croissant itself was airy, flaky and buttery, I could not have asked for more
Coffee made from Cafe Laffare beans (a local New Zealand bean roaster) was nice and strong and ever so slightly bitter. Bubbles on top in the milk meant air was exposed on the surface. A nice home made biscuit with apricot bits accompanied the coffee which gave it a nice touch.
The Croque Monsieur consisting of Brioche, Dijon, Ham, Swiss cheese, and Mornay Sauce was perfectly grilled, warm, tasty and crunchy on the edges. I could not have asked for more. I must admit, this would have to be the best Croque Monsieur I have tasted in New Zealand. Nothing comes close to this. The richness and softness of the brioche and the Mornay Saucse marriages well with the djon, ham and cheese. When I think of Akaroa or Croque Monsieur I think of these Croque Monsieur.
The Croque Madame consisting of the above with a poached egg on top came at the same time. They were both delightful and warm especially with the use of brioche as opposed to plain bread.
Total Cost of two croissants with jam, Croque Monsieur, Croque Madame and two coffees $36
Location: 67 Beach Road, Akaroa