Recently in Paris category
Certainly one of the most stunning pastry shops in Paris is Sadaharu Aoki. It’s so well-regarded that I ran into a famous chocolatier from the neighborhood during my last visit, who was picking up his goûter, or afternoon snack, as they call it in Paris. We recognized each other and he smiled at me while choosing a Thé Vert Napoléan; layers of vivid green tea pastry cream stacked between dark-golden puff pastry. (In French, a Napoléon is called a mille-feuille.) A wise choice since Sadaharu Aoki is considered the Parisian master of puff pastry. After one buttery, crackly bite…you’d agree.
It was a long and difficult decision, but I chose this perfect Chocolate and Salted Butter-Caramel Tart for my goûter. It was extraordinarily good. Buttery-crisp pâte sucée filled with rich and salty caramel that oozed out when I attacked it with my fork. On top sat a spiral of milk chocolate mousse, so soft and so creamy.
Macaron-lovers will swoon over flavors like caramel and chocolate, but also more creative confections that include yuzu, red bean paste, and green tea.
Pâtisserie Sadaharu Aoki
35, rue de Vaugirard
56, Boulevard Port Royal
After the end of a long week: I renewed my Carte de Sejour, braved the hectic but incredibleMarché St. Pierre at the foot of Montmarte…and tried to get an answer about why after 10 days, I still don’t have internet access or cable tv.
With all that stress, I felt it was an absolute necessity to visit Ladurée twice this week, especially since all my homemade chocolate macarons got wolfed down at a friend’s birthday party and I forgot to stash away a few for myself. I needed to get my fix…and I needed it fast.
But sometimes life tosses the weak a life preserver, namely chocolate-covered macarons – where have they been all my life?
16, rue Royale
75, avenue des Champs Elysées
21, rue Bonaparte
– Check out my recipe to make your own French chocolate macarons at home. Dipping in chocolate is optional…
Sometimes I go back into the archives and pull up a post to refresh it. Perhaps the hours have changed, they’ve moved, or something else prompted me to tweak the entry. But a lot has happened since I first wrote about Ô Chateau wine tasting programs. First off, since I wrote about them, they’ve moved – twice.
A week or so I wrote about one of my favorite fruits; the quince.
After all the poached quince slices were eaten (at about the same rate as the batch of homemade vanilla ice cream which I made to go alongside), I reduced the delicious syrup on the stovetop until it was thick and the bubbles became large. Once removed from the heat, as the syrup cooled, the pectin in the fruit encouraged the liquid to be transformed into a lovely quince jelly riddled with dark and aromatic vanilla seeds.
I found a beautiful and tangy bleu cheese at my favorite fromagerie; it’s a perfect pairing.
Tel: 01 43 45 35 09
I am often asked the difficult-to-answer question, “Who is the best chocolatier in Paris?”
There are very few parts of Paris where you can’t find something delicious made of chocolate. Luckily from my apartment, I’m just a few blocks from Dalloyau, Gerard Mulot, Lenôtre, and Joséphine Vannier near the Place des Vosges, a small chocolate shop whose window delights the tourists, but belies the more serious chocolates inside.
Surrounded by all this chocolate, how does one name a favorite?
I was thrilled when Patrick Roger decided to open a boutique in Paris. (His workshop is in Sceaux, in the suburbs of Paris). Instead of setting up in a super-chic arrondissement, his shop is close to the bustling Boulevard St. Michel. Each time I pass by, there’s always people pressed hard against the tinted glass (which is to protect the chocolates from the sun), peering in to catch a glimpse of Roger’s stunning bonbons and whimsical chocolate and marzipan confections.
When it comes to chocolate, my philosophy is ‘Simple is Best’.
The finest chocolate bonbons allow the flavor of the chocolate to come through without interference from the other flavors and ingredients. The zippy notes of fresh lime juice enlivens a cushion of ganache, a hit of Sichuan pepper, smoky Earl Grey tea, and meltingly tender rum raisin-filled nuggets: all are examples of the masterful balance of flavors that compliment dark chocolate, not compete with it.
Little flakes of oatmeal embedded in a smooth ganache. Mounds of crispy slivered almonds enrobed in dark chocolate. Oozing caramel with the curious and welcoming addition of with pear juices enclosed within a vividly-colored, glossy half-dome. These are some of Monsieur Roger’s creations that continue to seduce me. They satisfy like classic chocolates do, but with curious new flavors that thankfully aren’t meant to shock, but to simply taste good.
Rochers, square cubes of chocolate, flecked with little crackly-bits then dipped in chocolate couverture are my second favorite chocolates here at the moment. My first love are perfect squares of nougatine, a caramelized melange of crispy nuts and burnt sugar, ground together to a paste, formed into cubes and neatly enclosed in chocolat amer.
Most of the time I stop by, many of the customers either wandered in off the Boulevard St. Germain, lured by the simple, yet dramatic chocolate displays in the window and seem to walk around the shop in a daze, not sure of where to begin or what to taste.
The other customers I find there are food-savvy Parisians, who’ve stopped in to pick up a little sack of noisettes, wild hazelnuts dipped in crisp caramel and dipped in dark chocolate, a few pure chocolate tablettes, or a selection of chocolate bonbons in the easily recognizable green-blue box, which has become a frequent addition to my chocolate checklist here in Paris.
Check out my video: A Visit to Patrick Roger.
Locations across Paris
4, rue du Pas de la Mule
Tel: 01 44 54 03 09
Locations across Paris
108, Boulevard St. Germain
Tel: 01 43 29 38 42
And you can read about my experiences ultimately working at Patrick Roger’s shop in my book, The Sweet Life in Paris.
We had ice cream at Dammann’s on the quai Montebello…
I bought some fouque-ing seal oil to winterproof my shoes…
I found a place to swim au natural with Parisians…
…and my favorite chocolate shop in Paris gave me a nice, big bag of chocolates…for being such a good customer!
1, rue des Grands Degrés
Tel: 01 43 29 15 10
UPDATE: Now closed
108, Blvd. St-Germain-des Prés
Tel: 01 43 29 38 42
50, rue St-André des Arts
Tél: 01 43 26 47 10
Other Café Malongo bars at:
-53, rue Passy
-Lafayette Gourmet 46-48, Boulevard Haussmann
-Monprix, 14 rue du Départ
Read more at my post: Where to find a good cup of coffee in Paris.