When you think of Paris, what do you envision? Is it the Eiffel Tower sparkling at night? A romantic evening stroll along the banks of the Seine? An art-infused afternoon spent wandering through the galleries of the Louvre?
For me, it’s all about the pastries. I picture a cozy little pâtisserie with glass display cases filled with an assortment of pain au chocolat, mille-feuille, religieuse, and macarons in every colour under the rainbow.
If you’re like me and you have a bit of a sweet tooth, here are few pastry shops filled with Parisian treats that you won’t want to miss:
When it comes to French pastry shops, Ladurée is la crème de la crème! The name dates back to 1862, and this French luxury bakery has earned its reputation by baking the most delectables macarons in all of Paris. Their pastries even landed a spot in Sofia Coppola’s film Marie Antoinette. French treats from Ladurée don’t come cheap, but you can expect some unique flavours like rose petal, ice mint, orange blossom, and liquorice, just to name a few.
La Pâtisserie des Rêves
The name alone says it all, this place is ‘The Pâtisserie of Dreams’. With pops of hot pink and pastries that are carefully showcased under glass lids, this contemporary tea room adds a bit of magic and whimsy with a futuristic twist. Expect classics like madeleines and croissants, as well as seasonal treats that include apricot tart and a vanilla and red fruits charlotte.
La Maison du Chou
La Maison du Chou specializes in one thing alone: choux. These are little fluffy pastries that are filled with cream in a myriad of flavours including vanilla, chocolate, praline and coffee. They currently have two locations in Paris; the original shop is located on Rue de Furstenberg, and they also have a smaller branch on Rue Jean du Bellay on Ile Saint-Louis. The latter doesn’t have much room for sitting, but it’s a good option if you just want to grab a little something sweet on the go to either enjoy at a park or along the banks of the Seine.
We can’t speak of French pastries without also mentioning Angelina, a confectionary that dates back to 1903, and oozes opulence and sophistication. The interior is decorated in the Belle Epoque style and it immediately transports you back to Paris’ Golden Age. If you do swing by here don’t miss trying the Mont-Blanc, which is the signature pastry made with meringue, whipped cream, and chestnut cream vermicelli. You can also sample classics like tarte au citron, a lemon cream tarte with vanilla marshmallows; choc Africain, a chocolate brownie with a dark chocolate mousse; and millefeuille à la vanille Bourbon, which is a puff pastry with a light Bourbon vanilla cream.
For something a little unusual, try Sadaharu Aoki which mixes French ingredients with flavours from the East. Aoki is a Japanese chef patissier making waves in Paris with his unusual creations. Expect flavours like green tea and sesame, and cakes named ‘Japon’ and ‘Bamboo’.
What’s your favourite French pastry?