Now onto the original café that supposedly started the biggest craze behind all these Japanese soufflé pancakes. Started in Osaka in 2014, Gram has since opened many other outlets within Japan and also 2 stores each in Hong Kong and Bangkok. Determined to suss out all the popular soufflé pancake cafes in Hong Kong, Gram was definitely a stop we had to visit.
We went to the one located within The One shopping mall in Tsim Sha Tsui and when we arrived around 7pm in the evening, the café was rather empty and we were totally exhilarated thinking that we do not need to queue for the pancakes.
Rather than a proper shop unit, Gram café is built within one of those open concept corners of the mall where it feels more like an open area of the mall than a close door café. There are not many seats so it can get crowded after dinner time when people look around for desserts.
When we sat down, we realised that the soufflé pancakes are only served during 3 time slots during the day. The timeslots start from 11 am with the 2nd one at 3 pm and the last one at 6 pm. During each timeslots, only 20 pancakes will be served. So there goes our dream about not needing to queue.
Since it was close to dinner time and we were quite hungry, we decided to try out the other desserts offered at Gram. Other than desserts, they served savoury pancakes which are great for breakfast as well.
The tiramisu pancake was stacked nicely and decorated enticingly to whet your appetite. While they are not soufflé pancakes, the pancakes are light and soft enough to make it a good dessert. The cocoa powder used were also bitter sweet providing a nice balance to the sweet cream used in between the pancakes.
We ordered the next pancake as it was a special and it looks totally pretty on the menu. When it arrives, it was really made for Instagram. The pancakes were stacked with a corner cut and displayed like a cliff with waterfall. The cream was drizzled and flowing down the stack of pancakes like the waterfall ending at the bottom with yam bits looking like mud or rocks. The filling of the pancakes were purple sweet potatoes and the whole ensemble looked so pretty in purple. Taste wise, the sweet potatoes were fabulously sweet and smooth but the pancakes were quite dry.
Not giving up, we went back the next morning for the 11 am slot and was the 3rd in queue and we were given this number card. You have to make the order only once and you will not be allowed to add any orders for soufflé pancake once past your turn.
The video can tell how wiggly and soft the pancakes were without touching the plate. Each plate has 3 pancakes stacked and served with a dollop of whipped cream and slab of butter.
The pancakes by far was the best soufflé pancake we had in Hong Kong and coming back the next day was totally worth it. We can totally understand why they restrict the sale of these pancakes by time slots and quantity since they are each made carefully and with great quality control. Each pancake was perfectly cooked to a golden brown top and bottom but with a wiggly and fully inside. The pancake itself was very light like clouds in your mouth and a perfect balance of egg whites, flour and milk.
I can’t wait to try this in Japan at their original store but till then if you are in Hong Kong or Bangkok, do drop by and try their pancakes.
Address: Hong Kong, Tsim Sha Tsui, Nathan Rd, The One L408 100號
Operating hours: 11 am to 11 pm
Nearest Station: Tsim Sha Tsui MTR Exit B1