Hugo & Victor, the new French pastry shop at The Webster, 1220 Collins Avenue, is fast becoming one of Miami Beach’s elite establishments.
The sweets, pastries and tarts created by the Parisian duo composed by Hugues Pouget and Sylvain Blanc are sold and served in all their glory in this charming shop, located one block away from one of Miami’s most iconic beaches. But to understand the special magic of this couple, selling under the name of Hugo & Victor, one needs to know about their background. Hugues has a pedigree as “Dessert Champion of France” and chief Pastry Chef to famed three-star Michelin chef Guy Savoy. His forte is flavor. Sylvain is an accomplished designer who created the luxury and accessory section of the world-renowned Paris department store Printemps. His forte is, not surprisingly, presentation and design.
They describe their pastries as “modern, creative and innovative” as indeed they are. Their special twist? Flavors inspired by seasonal fruits, scents and flavors, changing every few months. Fruit measures in large part with a minimal amount of sugar being used, which enhances the natural flavors of their confections. And then there are what they call timeless flavors—chocolate, caramel, grapefruit and key lime.
Among the outstanding delights we found on our visit: passion fruit cheesecake; a creation made with chocolate, praline, macedoine of fruits and sponge cake; and oh those tarts–grapefruit and key lime. The key lime was redolent of the finest tartes you’d find in Paris: the crust was perfect, the filling had the right balance of tart and sweet, and the meringue was a superb.
Macarons, croissants, financiers, and other patisserie grace the menu. Another standout, and probably their signature, is what they call the Hugo, shimmering milk or dark chocolate spheres with a caramel center, infused with the flavors of the season. They come in a notebook-like package of 6 or more, but a special edition created for The Webster, home of the eponymous boutique where high fashion, design and accessories find an elegant home, features 12 pieces in 5 flavors—lemon, kaffir lime, key lime, grapefruit and tangerine.