“Let them eat cake” is the well-known phrase attributed to Queen Marie Antoinette. But St. Pierre, Manchester, U.K., is bringing back the traditional French translation — “Let them eat brioche” — through its newest product, Brioche Popovers.
As a French pastry enriched with high egg and butter content, brioche has experienced more than 250% menu growth over the past 10 years in the United States, said Tim Boote, marketing director, St. Pierre. This created a mainstream appeal within retail, and brioche has been used in various meals from burger buns to French toast.
Brioche Popovers are a result of this trend but also were inspired by bakery mashups such as the cronut and pretzel croissant; in fact, St. Pierre came out with a brioche waffle a few years ago.
“The Popovers are a creative twist on traditional brioche, and we feel this will further the appeal,” Mr. Boote said. “It’s not a muffin, it’s not a cake, it’s not a roll. It’s unique, on-trend and the perfect size to eat on the go.”
Brioche Popovers take St. Pierre’s portfolio to a new level and were first sampled at IDDBA 18, where they received positive feedback. The sweet and flaky pastry has a cream filling swirled through it and looks similar to a muffin but tastes like a light buttery bread. Launched in three flavors — vanilla, chocolate and cinnamon — the Brioche Popover comes in a twin pack at a suggested retail price of $2.99.
Mr. Boote said St. Pierre wanted to create a product that was versatile for various retail channels. From supermarkets to c-stores, the Brioche Popovers can be merchandised in the in-store bakery or deli, in snack aisles, at the register and as end-cap items. The manufacturer also wanted to make a product that consumers could eat at any time of the day.
“Whether folks are looking for a sweet pastry to enjoy with their morning coffee, an afternoon snack or an after-dinner treat, the popovers are meant to satisfy multiple meal occasions,” Mr. Boote said.
To boost consumers’ visibility of these products, St. Pierre plans to relaunch its website and increase its social media presence. The company also will develop new merchandising racks to increase purchases.
As European-style pastries become more popular, St. Pierre will produce more authentic, cultural recipes for the U.S. market. By transforming French and Belgian staples into products, such as Brioche Popovers, Sugar Waffles and Filled Crepes, that speak to consumers’ on-the-go and flavor preferences, St. Pierre tells its own original story.