There are two food-related things I am not fond of: buffets and establishments known as “express.” Once in a while, I am willing to eat my words, and this time they tasted light and sweet, like pink lemonade in cookie form — more on this later. L-Eat Express is part of the L-Eat Group, comprised of L-eat Catering, Paese Ristorante and L-eat Express. The Express portion is a warm café space with well-priced sandwiches, portable breakfast options, lunch specials, and fresh salads. The only reason I agreed to try L-eat Express is because their new pastry chef assured me it wouldn’t make me violently angry. Logan Prong (formerly of Nota Bene, Trevor Kitchen & Bar and the Roosevelt Room) now oversees the pastry department for the entire L-eat Group. Each establishment has different needs but at L-eat Express, Logan will expand the selection of grab-and-go pastries and is currently working on developing additions to their selection of cookies, loaves and muffins.
If you limit your sweet intake based on quantity, for example: “I will let myself have ONE cookie today.” Then go for one of the cookies at L-eat Express, which is almost the size of my hand. Dark Chocolate Chunk, Double Chocolate Chunk and White Chocolate Cranberry each plead with me to choose them. At $2 each, there’s no reason you can’t order triplets. Conveniently wrapped slices of fresh banana bread and packaged mini-biscotti make it easy to run in and out of L-eat Express with a healthy lunch and mid-afternoon pick-me-up treat.
A platter of Barbie-pink, square cookie sandwiches beckon me towards them. They are Logan’s delightful Pink Lemonade Shortbread Cookies ($2), which I’m told are also vegan. Two light, thin cookies sandwich a perfect dollop of creamy icing filling, with the slightest hint of candied lemon and zest.
Also popular during the summer days are house-made ice cream sandwiches, like the Island Girl Ice Cream Sandwich ($4.50) with two ginger molasses cookies and Greg’s mango ice cream, or the Coffee Break Ice Cream Sandwich, which marries chocolate chunk cookies with Greg’s coffee toffee ice cream.
If you’re looking to fake and bake, L-eat also offers convenient rolls of frozen cookie dough ($8), so you can slice and bake at home and take credit for the joy of oven-fresh cookies.
Your favourites won’t disappear with a new pastry chef in charge, but you can bet that Logan’s famous brownie recipe — he’s tinkered with it at each restaurant — will be reincarnated and available soon. Already working on his own croissant dough and finding inspiration everywhere he looks, L-eat Express is only going to get better in the coming months.