Carte Noire's "Cafe Couleur" campaign: Food porn at its best.

They've Done It. The French Have Made the Food-Porniest Food Porn That Ever Food Porned.

They've Done It. The French Have Made the Food-Porniest Food Porn That Ever Food Porned.

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Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog
March 25 2014 7:44 PM

Now This Is How You Make a Cream Puff

They've done it. They've made the food-porniest food porn that ever food porned.

Promotional photo courtesy Carte Noire

Ad Age and Jezebel draw our attention to a highly persuasive ad for French coffee brand Carte Noire. Like many of the best commercials, it doesn't reveal the product it’s advertising until the very end. Instead, it spends most of its two-minute run time hypnotizing you with gorgeous shots of competent pastry making:

As someone who recently tried and failed to make profiteroles look nice, I experienced intense envy and longing while watching this video, whose food stylist/invisible hand model is enormously adept with a pastry bag. Those perfectly spherical cream puffs! That eminently silky coffee-flavored crème patissière! Would that I had the patience and skill (and good lighting and cinematography) for such visually pleasing creations.


My only issue with the ad is that its copywriters, like children’s toy manufacturers, insist that pink is for girls. “Discover Pink by Carte Noire, the gourmet video reserved for women,” reads the Carte Noire website, according to my rough translation. “Exclusively reserved for women,” the site goes on redundantly, “this recipe is meant to be savored among friends. But will you be able to resist the desire to share these adorable cream puffs with your lover?” (I don’t know, I guess that depends on how many cream puffs I have, and how hungry my friends and I are.)

Although the ad is just now catching fire on these shores, the Carte Noire “Couleur Café” campaign is a couple of years old, and it features three other less sexist instructional videos for dessert recipes containing its coffee: green (a pistachio tiramisu), red (a chocolate-raspberry millefeuille), and yellow (a mango-passionfruit mousse). I’m not sure I’d go for a dessert that combines mango and passionfruit with coffee, but it sure does look nice. Profitez-en.

L.V. Anderson is a former Slate associate editor.