If you need a pick-me-up of the sweet persuasion while shopping in San Francisco’s tony Union Square area, duck into Macy’s.
That’s where you’ll find Tout Sweet – past the racks of women’s sportswear on the third floor.
Done up in gumdrop colors, it’s a cheery place to pick up a treat or to sit for a spell while enjoying coffee, a glass of wine or even a savory sandwich.
That’s exactly what I did one day recently when I bought a few things to enjoy later at home.
Your eyes are drawn immediately to the case of macarons done up in vivid hues.
The Sicilian Pistachio is one of the most intensely flavored ones I’ve had. It boasts a hint of cinnamon to amplify the nuttiness. The 5th Element is a bold pink with a big, bright berry flavor with an accent of floral Wu Long Tea. Salted Caramel is always a favorite with its sweet, salty, bitter complexity that hits all the right notes. They’re $1.85 each.
The Nutella Stuffed Sugar Bun ($1.75) is a buttery brioche round smeared with Nutella and almond nougatine. Bite into it and you’ll find a tiny center of Nutella, too.
One of my favorites at Tout Sweet is the Naughty Peanut Cookie ($2.85). It’s not your average peanut butter cookie. Instead, it’s quite crisp from cornflakes and peanuts, plus gooey from an unexpected hidden mortar of marshmallow fluff that holds everything together.
Yes, you do get charged 10 cents for a bag to carry everything home. But the packaging, with its colorful abstract flower design, is more than worth the dime.