Dining With Miss Lil: Harlem’s Newest Pastry Shop

Front Entrance of Jolie Patisserie

By Lil Nickleson

Jolie Patisserie is the newest patisserie shop to open up in Harlem and is located at 2453 Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard in between 142nd and 143rd Streets.  Jolie Patisserie is the latest food business to be owned and operated Pastry Chef Moha Orchid.

Born and raised on a farm in a small rural area south of Morocco, his Mom was a great inspiration to Chef Moha’s culinary journey.  At 19 years old he ventured to expand his horizons and was classically trained over the next 4 years in Normandy, France.  Chef Moha has spent the last 30 years cooking in the United States; the first 4 years in Cleveland and the last 26 years on the east coast in New York, Puerto Rico, Ohio and North Carolina.

His first position here in NYC was as a line cook at Union Square Café working alongside renowned Restaurateur Danny Meyer and Chef Ali Barker.  Previously he has owned a French restaurant in North Carolina and Mediterranean restaurants in Greenwich Village and in Cleveland.

Interior of Jolie Patisserie1

Interior of Jolie Patisserie No 2 (2)Jolie Patisserie is Chef Moha’s latest food service business since his return to NYC and his first in Harlem.  We know how NYC gets in your system that no other region in this country can quite compare to.  He wanted to take on the challenge of opening a bakery in the U.S. for less than $50,000.  To cut down on his build costs he personally worked on renovating the space and he personally selects the products he uses instead of using a third party food service distributor so that he can pass the savings on to his customers.  Chef Moha also gives left overs away at the end of the day to local kids and community centers in the neighborhood.  He’s relying on goodwill and word of mouth about his quality products and reasonable prices to drive business into his shop.

Everything is made fresh daily by Chef Moha and his team: French baguettes, Moroccan cookies, donuts and his pastries are Viennese style.  Viennese style pastries have more butter and less sugar than Southern desserts popular with African Americans.  The French speaking African community residents around his shop stop by before opening to get their customary breakfast of coffee and a fresh made French baguette for $1.75 or $2.00 with butter.

Bronut No2 (1)

Bronut N2The price list is very reasonable and much less expensive than what other dessert stored in Harlem are charging.  Prices run from as low as $1.25 for small French baguettes with tomatoes, $1.99 for croissants, coffee cakes, fruit or cheese Danishes and Sarah Bernhard cookies, $2.50 for bread pudding, $2.99 for crème brulee and lemon or lime tarts.  The highest price I saw was $3.99 for chocolate raspberry mousse cake and opera cake (praline & chocolate ganache).  Chef Moha’s “bronuts” are a work of art as well and is his version of when donuts meet croissants; fills them with cream and tops the with apricot or raspberry puree.Chef Moha and his brother1

Jolie Patisserie is the newest patisserie shop to open up in Harlem and is located at 2453 Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard in between 142nd and 143rd Streets.  Jolie Patisserie is the latest food business to be owned and operated Pastry Chef Moha Orchid.

Bluberry-Danish1Born and raised on a farm in a small rural area south of Morocco, his Mom was a great inspiration to Chef Moha’s culinary journey.  At 19 years old he ventured to expand his horizons and was classically trained over the next 4 years in Normandy, France.  Chef Moha has spent the last 30 years cooking in the United States; the first 4 years in Cleveland and the last 26 years on the east coast in New York, Puerto Rico, Ohio and North Carolina.Lemon Tart1

His first position here in NYC was as a line cookat Union Square Café working alongside renowned Restaurateur Danny Meyer and Chef Ali Barker.  Previously he has owned a French restaurant in North Carolina and Mediterranean restaurants in Greenwich Village and in Cleveland.

Jolie Patisserie is Chef Moha’s latest food service business since his return to NYC and his first in Harlem.  We know how NYC gets in your system that no other region in this country can quite compare to.  He wanted to take on the challenge of opening a bakery in the U.S. for less than $50,000.  To cut down on his build costs he personally worked on renovating the space and he personally selects the products he uses instead of using a third party food service distributor so that he can pass the savings on to his customers.  Chef Moha also gives left overs away at the end of the day to local kids and community centers in the neighborhood.  He’s relying on goodwill and word of mouth about his quality products and reasonable prices to drive business into his shop.

Everything is made fresh daily by Chef Moha and his team: French baguettes, Moroccan cookies, donuts and his pastries are Viennese style.  Viennese style pastries have more butter and less sugar than Southern desserts popular with African Americans.  The French speaking African community residents around his shop stop by before opening to get their customary breakfast of coffee and a fresh made French baguette for $1.75 or $2.00 with butter.

The price list is very reasonable and much less expensive than what other dessert stored in Harlem are charging.  Prices run from as low as $1.25 for small French baguettes with tomatoes, $1.99 for croissants, coffee cakes, fruit or cheese Danishes and Sarah Bernhard cookies, $2.50 for bread pudding, $2.99 for crème brulee and lemon or lime tarts.  The highest price I saw was $3.99 for chocolate raspberry mousse cake and opera cake (praline & chocolate ganache).  Chef Moha’s “bronuts” are a work of art as well and is his version of when donuts meet croissants; fills them with cream and tops the with apricot or raspberry puree.

Chef Moha makes a donut topped with sriracha, sour cream and almonds as well as unforgettable sorbets with fresh fruits and very little sugar such as red plum with anise, mango lavender or lychee with jalapeno.  Unlike most pastry chefs Chef Moha has culinary skills as well and has plans to add sandwiches for lunch time menu.  At present his brother works with him at the shop during the week and his sister helps out on the weekend.  Ever since he opened his doors I love stopping by and getting a fresh out of the oven croissant in the morning on my way to work or pick up a Danish or tart to g=have with lunch or dinner.  Stop by and try his desserts for yourself.

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