Warda Patisserie Offers Worldly Flavors with a Local Flair

By: Karen Dybis | October 16, 2020

Photo Courtesy of The Detroit Free Press.

Your Metro Detroit Chevy Dealers and the Detroit Free Press are proud to once again team up to support our local restaurants with the Top 10 Takeout series, a celebration of the 2020 Top 10 Best New Restaurants of the Year.

We will be highlighting each of those restaurants as tickets to their respective Takeout event go on sale. This week, Mink Detroit shows us that a large space isn’t required to create homestyle dishes people will love. Don’t forget that you can enter our giveaway for a chance to win a virtual cooking class with the chef of 2020’s Restaurant of the Year and other prizes!

If you’re the type of person who checks reviews and does extensive research before going to a restaurant or bakery for the first time, you’ll find one word repeated throughout stories about Ward Pâtisserie: Honest. 

In this context, that term means more than truthful and sincere. It also means someone to be trusted, or it can be used in a way to convince someone about the truth of something. In the case of founder and pastry chef Warda Bouguettaya, honest refers to the way she works, her partnerships with Detroit-based kitchens and cafes as well as the kind of food she makes, both savory and sweet. 

Warda Pâtisserie defines itself on social media and in media hits as a small, Detroit-based Pâtisserie making sophisticated, hand-crafted pastries inspired by the seasons and influenced by Bouguettaya’s travels and previous life in Algeria, France and Asia.

When asked directly how she wants customers to think of her business, Bouguettaya adds a few more adjectives, much like a proud owner or maman would. She wants Metro Detroit to try something new, to open up its collective palate and to love the experience of learning about what they don’t know when it comes to food. 

“We offer sophisticated, world inspired pastries, both savory and sweet, rooted in seasonality, using the best ingredients and baking everything from scratch with care, technique and lots of love,” Bouguettaya said.

And she wants first-time guests as well as long-time fans to know that she and her staff make everything with the kind of love and attention that the food and her customers deserve. No detail goes unnoticed – that’s another part of the honesty she defines.

“From gluten-free mango and black sesame financiers to lemon meringue tart, all of our pastries are made to order, fresh every day,” Bouguettaya said. 

Some background: by strict definition, a Pâtisserie is a shop where pastries and cakes are sold. It may be Italian, French or Belgian in specific. Bouguettaya brings her Algerian roots to this classification of baked goods, offering such sweet treats such as the honey makroud and griwesh, a complicated, knotted puff pastry that includes roasted sesame seeds and orange blossom water. 

Bouguettaya came to Detroit because of her husband – “I followed my love to Detroit,” she told Saveur magazine – but she also studied in France, which gave her a deep background in the world of a Pâtisserie, as well as Shanghai, where she and her family spent three years. Her worldly take on food makes sense then, giving people locally grown flavors such as blueberry and strawberry but with a modern flair, adding newer tastes such as a matcha tea cake. 

Her work must be seen as well as eaten. Eater Detroit called her work “stunning,” and it is easy to see what that description fits. Every photograph is drool-worthy, highlighting the delicate tarts, the petite financiers, the smart brunches. The food is uniform in its style and substance, but each piece is clearly homemade and, once again, honest. 

During the coronavirus pandemic, Bouguettaya has maintained her social-media presence and continues to update customers when her shop will fully reopen. Based on the responses, her hungry clientele cannot wait. She understands. 

“We are open to online orders for weekend pick-ups and hope to expand our hours to more days soon,” Bouguettaya said.