I’ve always believed that when it comes to making major decisions in our lives, passion is one of the greatest factors that should be taken into consideration. Elaine, the owner of The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie, shared the same sentiments after she elected to leave her corporate job to pursue baking.
I visited The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie along Hamilton Road on an early weekday and was greeted by a warmly lit store with a cosy yet spacious ambience. The display case showed off a range of stunning bakes in tempting multi-coloured hues, each with a classy yet fun appearance.
Elaine worked in the corporate sector since graduating from school and felt unfulfilled. In 2020, she took a leap of faith and enrolled herself in the prestigious Le Cordon Bleu’s Boulangerie course. Prior to her studies at the esteemed culinary institute, Elaine had only dabbled lightly in home baking, and entered the school practically as a beginner.
There, she gained a wide array of knowledge and skills which set a fantastic foundation for her to start her legit baking journey. Afterwards, she made the decision to open her very own bakery.
While tasting the delectable French pastries, I sat down with Elaine and learnt a little more about the story behind The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie.
What I tried at The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie
The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie sets itself apart from other bakeries through its creative viennoiserie creations. Aside from offering classic French pastries, Elaine experimented with different flavours and combinations to come up with bakes unique to her bakery. The dough used in her bakes are fermented for a minimum of three days to bring out the most flavour.
First, I tried the most classic French pastry, the Croissant (S$3.80). In the R&D process, Elaine had tested out five different types of butter to determine which would provide the Croissant with the most flavour.
Elaine explained how essential the plain croissant was in establishing the skills of a baker and the quality of a bakery, given how technical mistakes could not be covered up. “Typically if a customer likes the croissant, they’ll like everything else,” she shared.
After taking a bite of the Croissant, I can safely declare that The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie has nailed this quintessential French pastry to a tee. The lamination of the Croissant was perfect with soft, airy layers giving the pastry lots of volume.
I normally don’t gravitate towards plain croissants given how I prefer varieties with more ingredients, but The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie’s Croissant wow-ed me with its simple yet rich buttery aroma. Its ultra-crisp exterior, paired with the soft, fragrant interior, made this one of the most memorable croissants I’ve had.
I moved on to one of The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie’s bestsellers, the Almond Croissant (S$5.50). Filled with rum-infused almond cream and featuring a crunchy cookie-like top, I was delighted at the superb nutty flavours and textural contrasts of this pastry.
The Almond Croissant took the classic flavours of the regular Croissant and zhng-ed it up with sweeter elements that would appeal to pastry lovers with a sweet tooth. I could definitely see why this is a bestseller.
The Quiche (S$5.70) was the biggest surprise for me. I’ve had a few quiches in the past, but The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie’s take on this savoury pastry absolutely blew every single other quiche out of the water.
While other quiches I’ve had were firmer with an omelette-like texture, The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie’s Quiche had a silky and smooth texture reminiscent of pudding. It was savoury and salty with a strong eggy taste, and the addition of Gruyère cheese enhanced the richness of the Quiche without overpowering the other elements.
The pastry that piqued my interest the most was Trio of C (S$7.20), which combined a croissant, cheesecake and cookie into a single pastry.
Elaine shared that she wanted to explore a contrast of textures, with the flaky, crispy croissant, smooth creamy cheesecake and chewy cookie all providing a different mouthfeel to the pastry.
I could instantly feel the contrasting textures on my first bite, and I was impressed with how each individual element of Trio of C managed to shine. The cookie had a classic, nostalgic sweetness and was studded generously with chocolate chips. The cheesecake had an exciting zesty profile from the addition of orange peels, and the croissant itself was buttery and flaky.
Most surprisingly, Trio of C managed to combine all three elements without being too sweet, as I had previously anticipated.
I tried one of The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie’s most beautiful bakes, the flower-shaped Fleur De Framboise (S$8.20). This eye-catching viennoiserie was the most expensive bake in the store, and with good reason.
Each of the five petals of the Fleur De Framboise flower had to be cut and shaped separately, making it the most time-consuming and labourious pastry for Elaine to make. Despite the arduous process, Elaine wanted to create something that people in Singapore hadn’t seen before.
Fleur De Framboise came with a well of raspberry jam and raspberry confit in the middle. The generous amounts of natural-tasting raspberry filling paired perfectly with the fluffy bread, providing it with a strong, tart flavour.
Next, I had La Brioche Macaronade (S$6.20), which despite its muffin-like appearance, was actually a custard and caramel-filled brioche bun. The soft bun was topped with a cookie-like macaronade, which I learnt was a French creation inspired by the recipe for macarons.
Again, I was pleased at the well-balanced textures and flavours of the La Brioche Macaronade. The smooth custard had fragrant vanilla tones and the caramel brought out an adequate amount of sweetness that wasn’t too overpowering or saccharine.
Elaine shared that a customer, who she and the bakery staff had dubbed the “Macaronade Uncle”, would frequently come into the store to buy multiple of the La Brioche Macaronade for his grandchildren. After trying it for myself, I can certainly see why he keeps coming back.
I also got to try The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie’s special bakes which had still been in the R&D process at the time of my visit. Given that the bakes had not yet been released, the shapes of the pastries had not yet been finalised, so the versions that I tried may look different from the ones launched to the public.
The Father’s Day special, Viennoiserie de Prosciutto Truffé (S$13.50), featured a flaky viennoiserie topped with 24 months cured prosciutto, Gruyère cheese, cream cheese, asparagus and a generous smattering of truffle bits. I am obsessed with all things truffle, and the strong, noticeable truffle flavour in the pastry impressed me deeply.
Paired with the smooth, creamy cheeses and the salty, meaty taste of the prosciutto, I fell in love with the Viennoiserie de Prosciutto Truffé. If this were made a permanent menu item, I would gladly return on a monthly basis for more.
Viennoiserie à la Tartiflette (S$6.50), was a viennoiserie inspired by the French dish from the Aosta Valley, tartiflette, and was created as a monthly special for June 2022. The croissant was topped with oyster mushrooms, potato cubes, garlic, cheddar and mozzarella, and I was impressed at its complex flavours from all the different elements.
The conquest of following our passions is a difficult one, but Elaine has proven how sometimes, a leap of faith could lead us to a happier and more fruitful existence.
When I asked Elaine why she had chosen to leave her job and pursue baking, I learnt that bakeries had always been a passion of hers, starting from her childhood, when her mother would bring her to a neighbourhood bakery near their home to buy bread for breakfast the next day.
She described their bakery runs as her favourite part of the day, and called bakeries the “happiest place” for her to be in. That passion carried on into her adulthood, and was what motivated her to leave her monotonous corporate job in search of a more meaningful life path.
The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie isn’t just your average artisan bakery. Elaine’s dedication to her bakery, creations and customers can be felt from the moment you step foot into this quaint space along Hamilton Road, and each carefully crafted bake is a labour of love that boasts its own story.
To Elaine, customers aren’t simply customers who make purchases and leave. Rather, she sees them as friends who appreciate her creations. She adds: “In France, a bakery is a place where you build friendships and relationships. When people step into a bakery, they’re buying something that they like from you and it’s a friendly thing, it’s not like doing business. That’s how I operate my bakery.”
With its heartwarming backstory, inviting atmosphere and exceptionally incredible bakes, The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie is an absolute must-visit for pastry lovers that is most definitely worth the trip.
Expected damage: S$4 – S$15 per pax
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Price: $ $
Our Rating: 5 / 5
The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie
16 Hamilton Road, #01-02, Singapore 209186
The Lunar Rabbit Boulangerie
16 Hamilton Road, #01-02, Singapore 209186