First Look: Vin Coco Patisserie

I meet up with Heather Hignett at her kitchen space and sit down with her for a chat about her pastry business: Vin Coco Patisserie. A disciple of the late Candice Hartley, Heather came up through the restaurant industry both in Victoria and in Vancouver, and earned her red seal through Camosun College. Adorned with tattoos and stylishly dressed — despite the fact that she is baking — I sense in her that element that separates a competent baker from a truly sensational one: flare.


Hignett confirms my theory when, after the interview, she takes me out back to get some photos of her posing with a blowtorch and a cupcake in front of her convertible 1962 Beaumont. This is how she delivers her cakes to her customers. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Hignett also participates in bake sales at burlesque shows, and makes naughty xxx chocolates to order. I have never understood exactly what the crossover is between burlesque and baking, but there is one for certain; many of the burlesque dancers I’ve known have been exceptional bakers.

It isn’t all titillation at Vin Coco, of course. As I arrive, Hignett is putting the finishing touches on cupcakes, crème brûlée, and chocolate towers for Chongo’s restaurant in James Bay (225 Quebec St). I try one of the cup cakes and it is a masterpiece. The inside is, unexpectedly, full of lemon filling. How does she manage to bake it in there without the entire cupcake disintegrating into a doughy mess?


I ask how she is responding to the gluten-free trend that has become so prolific.  She tells me that she has perfected a vegan and wheat free chocolate cake that is absolutely delicious, moist, and possessed of a cake appropriate consistency. We look at some of her other cakes, too. She has made skull shaped cakes for her favourite tattoo shop, baseball and stadium cakes, and all sorts of traditional wedding cakes, too. A visit to her website feels like a viewing of cake porn. There is so much scrumptious variety there that all I want to do is sit down with a glass of milk and devour slice after slice.  My sweet tooth is easy to influence, I’m afraid.

If you are looking to sample Vin Coco’s wares for yourself, you can find them at Mother Nature’s Market and Deli (240 Cook St.), or you can call her and ask her to make your dream cake for you especially for your next birthday or event. I’ve tasted her baking and I can tell you that you won’t regret it.

Website: Vin Coco Patisserie
Facebook: VinCoco
Phone: 250-885-7424
Address: 638 Fisgard Street

Written By:

Born and raised in the mysterious East (by which I mean Ontario and Quebec, not Asia), Adam migrated out to British Columbia in search of adventure and fortune. He had been at different times a scholar, a musician, a poet and a ...

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