In Paris, consuming a macaron can be an exquisitely decadent experience.
It could be eaten under the Eiffel Tower, balanced delicately on a plate in an upmarket patisserie or nibbled at looking over The Seine.
It’s a romantic sweet, full of nostalgia for this city and one that the Almondine girls are keen to recreate with the opening of their first patisserie in Aberdeen.
Opening to the public on Wednesday, the tiny patisserie used to be one half of the adjacent David’s florists where the family business would sell their perfect little wares each Saturday.
But when the opportunity arose to purchase the space, mother and daughter team Susan, Jenny and Suzanne Williamson decided it was the right time to make the leap.
"I think it was something we all decided that we wanted to do eventually," explains matriarch Susan.
"We all love the French pastries you get when we visit Paris, and we wanted to do something very similar to offer people in Aberdeen because we felt there was nothing like that in Aberdeen so it was definitely something we very much wanted to do."
Now transformed from a room bursting with roses and lilies to a clean-looking patisserie with black and white pictures framing the walls and metal chairs straight from the streets of Paris, its seems Almondine have succeeded in their aim to bring a little bit of France to the north-east.
Susan explains: "We want people to come into our patisserie and feel as if they are stepping into a patisserie in Paris. We want them to enjoy this as an experience, it’s about creating an atmosphere and that people enjoy sitting down and enjoying a coffee alongside their macaron."
Of course, macarons are at the forefront of Almondine’s Thistle Street patisserie, gleaming from the cafe front in towers of cream and baby blue, before customers can gaze at row upon row of flavours next to flaky pain au chocolat and curling croissants.
So going one step further and delving into the world of pastry as well as patisserie could have been a risky move, but for the Almondine girls, it is a case of choux love.
"It’s not too difficult [coming up with pastry ideas] because we’re all interested in baking anyway and we all enjoy the pastry you can get in Paris," explains Susan.
"We knew what we would like to have ourselves when we opened a patisserie in Aberdeen so it wasn't so much a problem for us."
Indeed it doesn't. A quick glance at the glass-fronted marble countertop oozes Parisan chic and those well versed in French pastries will recognise the same flair in the kiwi choux buns, chocolate éclairs and fruit tarts.
And the large macaron sandwiched precariously between upturned fresh raspberries is so bijou, it seems the girls have really captured the essence of those French patisseries they admire so much.
But those in search of a duck egg blue box lined with their signature macarons will not be disappointed, as the patisserie also offers boxes in various sizes for customers to take away – including festive flavours for a last minute Christmas present.
"We are doing a gingerbread macaron and we are also doing one called Christmas Spice along with all our regular flavours, so there are about 10 on offer." Susan adds.
"Do they make the perfect last minute Christmas gift? Absolutely!"
Almondine can be found at 43 Thistle Street and is open from 8am until 6pm Monday to Friday and until 7pm on Saturdays.