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It’s a great day when a new bakery opens up in your neighborhood. I don’t mean to brag, but there are six bakeries in my neighborhood. One of those “great days” was when a particularly lame bakery closed, and a really good one opened up in its place. And although I don’t like seeing people go out of business, another bakery that was, for lack of a better word – also lame – closed, and Maison Landemaine opened where another bakery had been.

It’s easy to come across as blasé when people ask about finding the best bakery in Paris, which sometimes includes a question about if you’re racing to the bakery that won the Grand prix de la baguette de tradition française de la Ville de Paris (an annual competition for the best baguette in Paris) for your daily bread. Winning that competition is a windfall for an unknown baker; the morning after the winner is announced, the lines are a lot longer than the baker ever imagined. Their baguettes are also served in the Presidential Élysée Palace for the following year.

But like most people in Paris, I tend to get my daily pain in my neighborhood. (Unless I lived in the Élysée Palace. Then I’d eat whatever they gave me.) Way back in 2007, I proudly posted a story called The Best Croissant in Paris, about the most delectable croissant they made at my neighborhood bakery, which, conveniently, was just across the street from my apartment.

People wrote articles about my article over the next few years, dissected the results, comparing it with other croissants in Paris. I took some online hits as the bakery changed hands, and changed bakers, and the croissants just weren’t the same afterward. It’s a full-time job going back and updating 1378 old blog posts, so I didn’t update that post.

Plus I’d moved, and hadn’t been back. But walking by the bakery a few weeks ago, I saw that it had closed and was boarded up, and work was being done on it. Like the bakery in my quartier, that became a Maison Landemaine, too.

Mention the word chaîne, and people scrunch of their faces in France, especially when it concerns a food place. That hasn’t stopped fast-food and coffee shops chains from proliferating, but it’s tough for bakeries that have more than one outlet to make a go of it, which I suspect is why so many change hands. In order to be called a boulangerie in France, the bread must be made on the premises. A depot de pain sells bread they didn’t make right there.

Those designations were not just because the French are especially fond of categorizing things, but was enacted when bakers started resorting to commercial formulas (like pre-mixed flours with leavening), or purchasing par-baked loaves made elsewhere and reheating and reselling that. It’s not a bad thing if freshly baked bread is made in another part of town, but most people in France like the idea of their corner bakery baking the bread fresh each day. So each Maison Landemaine is a proper boulangerie, making bread all day long, right in (or under) their shops.

There aren’t any flabby pas trop cuite (undercooked) baguettes at Maison Landemaine either. Each one is perfectly cooked; crisp and well-browned on the outside, chewy, moist, and rip-apart airy inside.

The bakery makes several types of baguettes in addition to the baguette ordinaire, which is regulated and must contain only flour, yeast, and salt, and don’t last very long. There are baguettes de tradition, baguettes de campagne, baguette aux graines (below), twisted baguettes, and baguettes coated with sesame and poppy seeds in their bakeries, the last two only available in certain shops, and the first two using natural yeast. I always go for the baguette de campagne.

The dozen-plus bakeries they have in Paris turn out 10,000 baguettes each week, and I know I am responsible for at least 3 to 4 of them during a seven-day period. I was so glad to find a baguette that was uniformly baked to perfection every time I went it, shortly after they opened, that I became a regular customer.

I’m not a super-fancy pastry guy so these days, I prefer to stick with traditional éclairs, babas, or apple tarts, which I often call “baker’s pastries,” since bakers tend to like simpler things, rather than fussy creations.

Owner, Rodolphe Landemaine worked for Pierre Hermé when he was the pastry chef at Ladurée (who owns the bakery with his wife, Yoshimi Ishikawa, who is now referred to as Madame Landemaine) so the bakery does well in the pastry department for those that want to indulge.

But I tend to go for a coffee or chocolate éclair, or a few madeleines plucked from the basket on the counter.

Thankfully carbs have been given a break recently so I don’t feel bad when I pick up, and devour, an entire small-ish loaf of their chocolate bread, a dark, crusty oval with éclats of dark, bittersweet chocolate, which isn’t too sweet. It’s great with an afternoon coffee, but fine on its own, for breakfast.

For those that want to stick to the savory side, some of their bakeries have casual, in-store cafés where you can stop in for not only breakfast pastries and un petit café, but a hefty slab of quiche, whose flavors change by the season, or fougasse topped smoked salmon, olives, mozzarella, or the only-in-France combo of bacon and cream.

Maison Landemaine

Addresses in Paris include:
28 Boulevard Beaumarchais (11th)
41 rue Oberkampf (11th)
26 rue des Martyrs (9th)
130 and 136 rue de Roquette (11th)
56 rue de Clichy (9th)

Related Posts and Links

How to Find a Great Baguette in Paris

Outsourced Croissants Outrage Traditional French Bakers (NPR)

Chocolate Bread




    • Taste of France

    Gorgeous photos. And a good explanation of the bakery business.
    Our local bakery is awful, despite the fact that the baker’s name is Froment. Can you believe it? However, for years we went to a bakery in the next village, tucked away on a barely one-way street (practically a tunnel, with the houses going up on either side and their walls full of scrapes from vehicles that were too big). The oven was wood-fired, and the baker’s wife would wear big mitts to bring out hot pain de campagne (and there would be a line of people waiting to buy it–be there on time or it’s gone). It would still be steaming when I got home. Sometimes we would eat the entire loaf while it was still hot enough to melt the butter. But the bakers got tired of it and sold out. The young guy who bought the place had his own ideas about things, and the bread wasn’t as good. He went out of business after two years.

    • Will

    A Maison Kayser opened recently in my neighborhood. I’m assuming the French turn up their noses at these places. The Baguettes are delicious but the staff is a bit precious and bitchy and not in a fun French way.

    • Anastasia


    • Martin Jobs

    What I find particularly amazing are the prices. You’d pay 3 or 4 times the price for that quality of bread in London (where I currently am)

    Anyway off to make the Provençal Chicken with Pastis from a few posts down. Scrawny poulet fermier from the Sunday Market @ Bastille….. God bless the Eurostar!

    • MarcyLuna Carlyn

    I am reading this while drinking coffee in the Oakland (CA) hills, and it makes me wonder if there is a superb bakery anywhere nearby. I know La Farine, but there must be one in Berkeley. Any ideas?

      • Cary

      Fournée down the hill across from the Claremont Hotel is an excellent East Bay French bakery.

      • Sandra Zaninovich

      Cary is right, I also think Fournee is the best in Berkeley.

    • Diane Perkins

    Wonderful article. The shop n the Rue de Martyrs has become part of a very traditional neighborhood. I see from the list of locations that they are all in real Paris neighborhoods. This blog makes me want to go back and never leave.

    • Pat Garvey

    OMG I want to hop on a plane and hit the bakery. Thanks for the great photos.

    • Taipan

    Which one is the boulangerie and which are the depots?

    28 Boulevard Beaumarchais (11th)
    41 rue Oberkampf (11th)
    26 rue des Martyrs (9th)
    130 and 136 rue de Roquette (11th)
    56 rue de Clichy (9th)

      • Linda

      I’m pretty sure that all are boulangeries and bake bread all day. In any event Oberkampf and Beaumarchais definitely are.

      • Oonagh

      David says they are all boulangeries.

        • David
        David Lebovitz

        Yes, all the Maison Landemaine bakeries make their bread in the shop.

    • Toni McCormick

    I’m envious. There are a few bread bakeries in New Orleans but at $4-$5 for a baguette, and $7-10 for a loaf of specialty bread we only buy when entertaining or special occasions.
    Don’t even get me started on what passes for a patisserie!

      • Lisa

      Have you tried Breads on Oak?

        • Toni McCormick

        Yes I have, they are very good but are pricey for everyday bread. Boulangerie isn’t what it used to be. There is Belgarde and others too. No really outstanding pastry shops and that includes Sucre. Some of their pastries taste like cardboard! and are too sweet!

      • Krystal

      Agreed. In our city we also have a phenomenal French bakery, but their prices are astronomical (the quality is too – some of their items are better than ones I’ve had in France). They donate their leftover breads to our campuses’ food pantry, so if anything remains after the students have left I’ll try to snag one. Even day-old it’s much better than our supermarket’s bread. I just wish the fresh stuff could be an everyday enjoyment.

    • suedoise

    I once met a French baker (and a grand chocolate virtuoso) successfully selling enormous jumbosized croissants in his shop inside the Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas. I asked him why giant croissants and he assured me Americans do not care about French sized croissants. Would
    anyone agree?

      • Ttrockwood

      Las Vegas is it’s own very special bubble….
      generally the American public thinks bigger = better , however there are certainly a good number of successful bakeries here in nyc selling smaller “french size” croissants and very few selling enormous jumbo ones.

    • Pesha

    Your posts have changed my annual trip to Paris, thank you.
    Please explain the difference between baguette de tradition and baguette ordinaries.

      • Taipan

      Pesha – “tradition” is always the crustier and chewier ones which the mature folks find harder to bite into and chew. If your teeth can handle it, ask for “tradition” and “bien cuit” – it’s so much tastier!

      • Oonagh

      I think the “tradition” is naturally leavened, ie sourdough.

    • ROSINA

    Your neighborhood must smell amazing….how do you manage?

    • Tess

    You are a bad man M. Lebovitz. On holiday in Paris staying near Republic. Now instead of walking downstairs and walking around the corner for breakfast baguette I am going to have to walk an extra 15 minutes to get breakfast pan. We live in Melbourne, Australia and the price of good bread is astronomical. A baguette can cost up to 5 euros and there is an extremely popular bakery near where we live that charges $5.50 (about 4 euro) for a croissant. The owner trained at Du Pain et des Idees.
    And don’t start me on fromage or wine.

    • Lette

    Tess, you are staying near some great bakeries! Not only the Maison Landemaine location mentioned above, but Du Pain et des Idées, and Liberté pâtisserie-boulangerie. Maison Landemaine has excellent croissants, Pain et des Idees has a range of interesting flavoured pastries, and Liberté’s chocolate bread is to die for! Wash it down with some Ten Belles coffee and you’ve got a breakfast that is the best in the world!

      • Tess

      I’ve been to Du Pain a few times but I’m at the other end of Republic in rue Amelot. Nearby is 134Rdt which is pretty good. My favourite coffee is Blackburn

    • Jim

    As happens so often, I’m yet again in your debt. I was on the 5 metro when I read your post, got off at Bastille, went straight to 28 boulevard Beaumarchais, walked out with a (still wonderfully warm) campagne and am (blissfully) slathering it with Grand Fermage buerre between keystrokes. I’ve been into traditions and this was my first campagne, a great discovery (thanks!). I’m in the 4th and have been in withdrawal with so many boulangeries en vacances during August. Great to have a new source. Though I secretly wonder if the baguette isn’t really simply a medium for the butter, some mediums being better than others, of course.

      • Taipan

      Jim – don’t even bite into one without slathering it with Bordier. It’s cardiac-arresting heaven!

    • InIrma’sKitchen

    We, in Falmouth, MA (on Cape Cod), have the privilege of having the most amazing French bakery, Maison Villatte, in our neighborhood on Main St. They bake a variety of breads, gorgeous pastries, quiches, sandwiches, and the most delicious chocolate chip cookies. You can stop in for a cup of good coffee plus, grab a seat inside or outside and pretend you are in Paris.
    Love your blog David. Every recipe of yours works out perfectly and tastes great. Come visit us in Falmouth! We’d be honored to have you. ISM

      • Penny

      Thank you for this information. Heading to Cape Cod next week…will definitely stop in to try the bread and pastry.

    • Gavrielle

    My eye started to twitch at the sight of the chocolate bread, then I saw the link at the bottom to your recipe – I knew you wouldn’t let me down! I’m going to try it this weekend, then have a shot at adapting it for sourdough (not because I know better than you in the bread department, but because us sourdough maniacs see everything through a “potential sourdough” lens).

    • Parisbreakfast

    I have always loved Landemaine’s individual fruit tarts, plum and apricot from rue de Martyrs. Then I discovered their roasted veggie sandwiches on Roquette. They are the Best boulangerie!

    • John maciejowski

    We are blessed with Pain d’Avignon from Hyannis, Mass. USA. Their bread is created with love just like Paris. It is delivered every day to the island of Martha’s Vineyard where we are vacationing.
    Jean Pierre

    • Richard Pirrera

    When you think Puerto Rico,you don’t think bread, especially good bread. But that has changed with Levain in Aquadilla. The owner baked in NY and apprenticed in France. The soft, mushy bread associated w the island is seriously ready for real competition. There’s a branch in San Juan now too!

    • Judith Bluysen

    I’ve been une cliente fidèle since I moved into a 4-Landemaine bakery neighborhood 6 years ago. The Tourte Auvergnate (an enormous round loaf of seigle that you can buy by the half or quarter–always ask for it unsliced and keep it in its paper bag, and slice it yourself–it’sgood for 2-3 days) is the best bread in Paris, maybe France, maybe the world. Aside from close to 15 outposts in Paris, he also opened a boulangerie/patisserie school in Japan, which is why many of his bakers and salespeople are Japanese.

      • Oonagh

      According to the post, his wife is also Japanese.

      • David
      David Lebovitz

      Yes, the tourte Auvergnate is really good as well. In fact, the owner of a neighboring bakery told me that it was really good, which is why I tried it : )

    • marion

    You can add Rue Daguerre (14th) and rue des Pyrennées (20th)
    Ghana beats them for the croissants in my opinion :op

    • tim

    If in northern NJ check out balthazar, not far from the GW bridge. Awesome bakery, though they do HUGE amounts for the name sake restaurant in NYC.

    The bread is like david likes it, well browned.
    I orderd about 16 chibattas for sandwiches and they make a couple hundred a day.

    • Kate

    I stayed in the 11th a few years ago (your recommendations were very helpful!) and we had a great time rotating between Chambelland and the Landemaine nearby. Even with pretty good bakeries at home, I really miss an inexpensive, flavorful baguette!

    • caisse enregistreuse

    I think the recipes are delicious and the price is cheap.
    But from 2018 you need new cash register.
    Klikx Paris offers you a complete range of connected and certified NF525 touchscreen, simple and scalable.

    • Paule Caillat


    Lyon, my new home, has the best food, markets and traiteurs but I have yet to find a really good baguette. I have tried 10 bakeries so far, one or two come close but still miss that little something, perfect combination of crust and mie. All other breads are good.

    I should have known : la baguette est parisienne, et unique

      • David
      David Lebovitz

      You will have to come back and stock up on baguettes … so I can see you again! : )

        • Paule Caillat

        For sure


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