Today is a very special day! This is the day I wrap up my Paris posts. It’s also Tim and my two-year wedding anniversary, but I will spare you all by leaving the sap out of this post.
I had grand plans for snacking in Paris. I took many notes from Robyn’s amazing Paris trip and thought we’d be able to tackle all the pâtisseries she photographed and wrote about. Alas, her blog isn’t just “The Girl Who Ate Something”; it’s called “The Girl Who Ate Everything” for a reason. I don’t know how you did it, Robyn, but I salute you.
First on my list was Pâtisserie Sadaharu Aoki. My friend Janice lent me The Patisseries of Paris by Jamie Cahill to plan for the trip, and I read it cover to cover many times. Sadaharu Aoki jumped out at me from the pages because I absolutely love Japanese flavors in dessert form, so I could imagine nothing better than French-style pastries with Japanese flavors. It met all my expectations, and I wanted to buy the whole store. Instead, I walked out with the matcha azuki duomo pictured above (a must try!), an assorted box of macarons, a jar of matcha azuki jam, and various chocolates in all flavors. See more drool-inducing photos captured by Béa and “the chocolate guy.”
We went to the Louvre on our first full day, and after spending most of the morning in the Denon Wing, we needed to refuel. We went to the nearest cafe and ordered un café gourmand and a Coke. If anyone’s ever advised you against buying a Coke in the Louvre, take the advice. Otherwise expect to pay about 4 euros for the Coke. We knew it’d cost us, but Tim had a thirst only Coca-Cola could satisfy. The macarons were tasty, but I probably would’ve been okay eating sugar cubes to last me through both Sully and Richelieu wings.
Yes, we visited McDonald’s on Champs-Élysées. Tim and I quickly became accustomed to having espresso every afternoon, so while walking along Champs-Élysées, we popped in the McCafé to enjoy deux cafés gourmand. The WSJ recently ran an article on the recent popularity of the macaron, highlighting their appearance in McDonald’s in Paris. The article poses the question, “Now chains like McDonald’s have added them to the menu. Can Parisians really tell the difference?” I’m not Parisian, but I believe there’s a difference. McDo’s version was significantly chewier than Ladurée’s, and the chocolate and caramel flavors were only so-so. Seeing macarons at the McCafé on Champs-Élysées is one thing, but what if we saw them at McD’s in Penn Station? Now that’s a scary thought.
Though our snacking wasn’t comprehensive, we did more than what I just mentioned. We ate more macarons from Ladurée, madeleines from Boulangerie Eric Kayser, Nutella crêpes from what I think used to be Crépuscule, assorted snacks from Monoprix, assorted cheeses from Fromagerie Quatrehomme, éclairs au chocolat from La Maison du Chocolat, and more éclairs from Angelina.
Here’s the list of places we did not get to try: Boulangerie Poilâne, Pierre Hermé, Gérard Mulot, Berthillon, Mariage Frères, and many, many more. In a way, I’m glad we still have a list of things to do in Paris. (Always look on the bright side, right?) We will certainly be back, and we’ll be able to enjoy them more in what I hope will be warmer weather.
If you have any must-see recommendations for Paris, please let me know! I know some friends visiting later this year, and I’d love to be able to give them more recommendations.