which serves sugar free French baked goods that will make your taste buds and your blood sit up, take notice and say thank you!
Founded two years ago by Chef Sebastian Chaoui, (above) and managed by Mylene Mirande, his wife, the pastry lounge added much needed flavor and life to a neighborhood which boasts the highest rates of diabetes in the country and, according to the USDA, is a "food desert" because of its lack of fresh and healthy food for residents.
How bad is diabetes in Bed Stuy? If you count 100,000 people in the neighborhood, 48.1% of its residents would be diabetic, according to statistics released by the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.
Bed Stuy also has one of the hightest foreclosure rates in NYC, even though prior to 2008, the hood was experiencing a resurgence. Back then, brownstones were tipping the scales at $1 million, bed & breakfast joints were popping up and Chris Rock was talking about his time there in the '80s on his show "Everybody Hates Chris."
The high real estate dash did not usher in green markets or fresh-food living though. For green market variety products, residents would have to trek about two miles to almost the edge of Fort Greene if they ever left their block. SuperFood Town, one neighborhood supermarket bordering Bed Stuy and Crown Heights, sitting on the corner of Fulton Street and Brooklyn Avenue, is a ten minute or more walk from La Table Exquise. It offers some relief, but prices there break banks as well as EBT cards. Ditto corner fruit stores where specialty foods are both imported and overpriced.
Such bleak statistics did not prevent Chef Sebastien, who trained in Paris at the Maitre Corbeau and was chef at the Lower House of The French Parliament, from opening his health conscious bakery, which occupies a the street corner adjacent to one of BedStuy's famed brownstones.