A modern pâtisserie with long family traditions is currently run by Albert Judycki and Jacek Malarski. It was founded in 1946 by Albert’s grandfather – Jan Dynowski in Praga, Warsaw.
Does Warsaw have rich pastry tradition?
Albert: – Yes, it does. Known are the stories of the foreigners who came to Warsaw in the 20s, 30s and were amazed at the quality of pâtisseries which were literally on every corner. The pastry boom started in the 19th century with the flow of emigrants from Switzerland. The most famous was Lourse at the Europejski Hotel. His cafe was later taken over by another renowned Swiss pastry chef – Semadeni. Another famous one was Fruziński. Not to mention Blikle and Wedel- these were the famous names of that time.
Jacek: – The Warsaw pastry chefs have always worked with a flourish. They took care of the quality of products and spared no energy, efforts, and money on the projects of the best interior architects or graphic designers. Signs, advertisements, and boxes were designed by the most prominent artists, for example, Zofia Stryjeńska. Interiors were made with taste and often were quite modern.
You have practiced in Paris – a mecca of international pastry. What have you brought here and what do you incorporate from the Polish tradition?
Jacek: – In Paris, we have learnt the modern know-how, professional knowledge and skills at the highest level. We regularly visit Paris: we keep up with the recent trends, visit new pâtisseries, buy books and professional magazines, we try out novelties in our favourite places.
Albert: – However, the majority of our offer and our vision on pastry is linked to the Polish tradition. We draw inspiration from Ćwierczakiewiczowa, Monatowa, Disslowa. The dessert section at Lukullus- tarts, cream cakes, cream puffs are cosmopolitan, but the baked part is definitely more local. We have in our offer a poppy seed brioche or strudel made according to the recipe of Lucyna Ćwierczakiewiczowa but also quite modern Mori Yoshida’s flan.
What is our national pride in the pastry field?
Albert: – Cheesecakes. Such delicious ones you won’t find anywhere else in the whole world. Our national pride is also yeast cake: poppy seed brioche, Easter baba, and donuts. Thanks to our friends from Paris we have learnt to value these traditional and simple flavours. When they are created with the use of the best ingredients, and according to the oldfashioned recipes they can arouse much more emotions than elaborated colourful velvet confections and glitter glazes.
Jacek: – Baked cakes smell, crunch, remind us of our childhood. We are admirers of simple tastes. What can be better than a buttery, aromatic sweet roll straight from the oven, strawberries with whipped cream and vanilla or roasted caramel apples?
And which Polish products would a French pastry chef buy at any price?
Albert – Curd for a cheesecake. Whortleberry, which they lack in France as people don’t pick up them in the woods. But above all, pure butter from Grajewo which has no equal in the world. To puff pastry, we have tried to add the most expensive butter from Holland, France, and Ireland. But that specific aroma was only to be found in the one from a diary in Grajewo.
Are you planning to open any new places in different cities?
Jacek: – Since 70 years Lukullus has been associated with Warsaw and let it stay that way. We won’t open any new places outside the capital. The quality of our products is of paramount importance to us. We wouldn’t like to micromanage. We are aware that in the case of pâtisserie too vast expansion might mean losing control over the quality and we just can’t allow it to happen.
The best compliment, you can hear from a client?
Albert: – One of our guests when asked about his favourite cake once said: “Passion fruit choux. Because it is filled with happiness.”
Lukullus, Chmielna St 32, Mokotowska St 52a, Francuska/Walecznych St, Rozbrat St 22/24 (ice-cream); www.cukiernialukullus.pl