My mom and I have a tradition of going on a mother-daughter lunch at André’s Confiserie Suisse. We’ve been doing this for so long I can’t remember when we started (middle school maybe?).
Originally hailing from Switzerland, André and Elsbeth Bollier immigrated to Kansas City in 1955 bringing a European influence to the Midwest. Luckily for us sweet tooth-laden food lovers, they established a trifecta of culinary delights. André’s is a chocolatier, pastry shop and tea room wrapped into one magical package.
Located near the Plaza (down the street from Glace), Andrés occupies a red brick building with a white awning. Stepping into the front door, long cases of gorgeous pastries, cakes and chocolates are there to greet you, beckoning from their trays. Resisting the initial temptations we forged onward to the dining room.
The main dining room is like walking into a Swiss ice chalet due to its heavy angled beams, lodge decor and large flag collection. At least it’s what I imagine a Swiss ice chalet looks like, since I’ve never been to Switzerland or an ice chalet.
André’s only serves lunch and the meal is light. You can choose from two daily specials or two standard quiche options. It comes with bread, tea and dessert (for $14.90 per person); dessert being the best part, of course. It’s the quintessential place for ladies who lunch, but over time we’ve seen an increase in male patrons.
On this particular day my mom and I both chose the Chicken Breast Annabelle special with mushrooms, tomatoes, spatzle and salad. The salad dressing was thin and tangy, the chicken was moist but the highlight was the tender spatzle. It was similar in texture to gnocchi and soaked up the flavors of the sauce. I ended up cleaning both of our plates.
Over the years we’ve eaten many different dishes and naturally some are better than others. If the daily specials don’t pique your interest, the quiches are always a sure bet.
Ever since we began this tradition, my most anticipated moment is when the waitress brings over the tray of desserts. As she describes the pastries I studiously examine each option to make a wise selection. (You only get one!) This time I picked the Matterhorn filled with butter cream and my mom selected their take on Tiramisu, which she generously shared with me.
These desserts taste as wonderful as they look. They are lavished with great attention to detail, rich and garnished with real whipped cream. It’s harder for me to chose a dessert than it was a college.
And if lunch wasn’t enough, on the way out my mom graciously lets me chose another chocolate or cookie to take home. It’s a sweet dilemma and guaranteed trouble for a indecisive dessert-aholic like me.
I adore André’s and our lunching tradition, almost as much as I adore my mom.
André’s Confiserie Suisse
5018 Main Street
Kansas City, MO 64112