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'Lette Them Eat Macarons'

By Kelly Church

Inspired by the classic French cookie, 'Lette Macarons is a southern California macaron patisserie that has been offering macarons in a wide array of flavors to sugar-craving neighborhoods for years. Owner and founder Paulette Koumetz and noted French pastry chef Christophe Michalak, opened their first store in 2007 in Beverly Hills under the name Paulette. Although Michalak was too busy with his work in Paris to stay with the company, Koumetz has benefitted from his expertise, and now has eight locations, and offers online ordering with overnight delivery. Koumetz has gone on to develop and grow her macaron shop under the slogan, "'lette them eat macarons!"

"When I was a little girl, I would often run to a little patisserie shop near my home, and my guilty pleasure of choice was always a macaron," Koumetz says. "When I arrived in Beverly Hills, I instantly knew a macaron boutique was what was missing from this elegant, multicultural city."

With the success of the first location, Koumetz opened up shop in Old Town Pasadena, a city she calls "a lively, diverse, [and] cultural place" Opening for business in Pasadena was the perfect way to get the 'Lette Macarons name out. "Pasadena is for everyone, which makes it the perfect place to introduce macarons to lots of people," Koumetz says.

Clearly, she was correct. Since Koumetz's first "macaron boutiques" in Beverly Hills and Pasadena, shops have opened up all around southern California: Newport Beach, Glendale, Larchmont Village, Little Tokyo, San Diego and Sherman Oaks. These small almond cookie sandwiches filled with ganache come in many flavors and colors. At 'Lette Macarons, flavors change seasonally, and their creations feature "vivid hues" that are credited to the natural flavors in the cookies. Inside the 'Lette Macarons shop are brightly colored photographs of the macarons, up close and personal.

"All in all, we let the customer dive in the macaron experience to wake up all his five senses and increase his excitement for the firework of colors and flavors at his reach," Koumetz says.

Part of what makes Koumetz's macarons so popular is her focus on engaging multiple senses, reaching the customers on levels of both taste and texture. The key is to ensure that macarons of every flavor are authentic to what the actual food tastes like. Including brewed coffee into a coffee-flavored macaron, for instance, is essential in the authenticity and getting a good reaction. "Taste is extremely important," Koumetz says. "If you close your eyes, you shouldn't ask yourself what it is that you are tasting. Using natural ingredients to bring out those flavors is key."

But her attention turns to texture. This classic Parisian cookie is known for the slightly crisp outside with a soft center. Koumetz says the difficulty in creating the perfect texture lies in the variety of ingredients used to accomplish the authentic flavor. Different ingredients create different levels of chewiness, but complimenting the unique cookie's texture with the right balance of creaminess and density is what makes the cookie successful.

'Lette Macarons has many classic flavors and offers seasonal specials throughout the year. As an added unique bonus, they are certified Kosher Dairy from the Orthodox Union. Any order placed online will be shipped overnight, in order to reach the buyer with maximum freshness intact, maintaining the company slogan and the idea that everyone who wants a 'Lette Macaron should be able to have a 'Lette Macaron.

Koumetz strives to share her passion of these French delicacies with as many people as possible in order to share the "bites of bliss, happiness and pure satisfaction."

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