The Girl Who Ate Everything

Blogging about food and whatever since 2004.

'Patisseries in Paris,' Part III

Continuing the last two entries' themes of "Tasty Things in Paris," here's my final look at tasty things in Paris, accompanied by quotes from Patisseries of Paris.

Boulangerie-Patisserie P.P. Colas

Colas Artisan baguette de tradition macarons walnut tartlette
Weeee, food.
"Stop into Boulangerie-Patisserie P.P. Colas for its patisserie or pain du jour, seasonal specialties presented on the blackboard out front."

I remember P.P. Colas very well—it was one of the first bakeries that I went to in Paris (it was near my school) where I felt like the woman behind the counter found me about as desirable as a smelly hobo. (And just so you know, I wasn't particularly smelly that day, nor dressed as a hobo.) I picked a random sandwich for lunch and got the hell out of there. The sandwich was unremarkable, but that was probably because it was made with some kind of soft, skinny, fluffy roll, not a baguette. Their baguette de tradition was pretty awesome, like most baguettes de tradition tended to be. They also sold huge-ass macarons—not necessarily the best, but satisfying, and the chocolate one reminded me of a brownie.

On subsequent visits I was served by very nice people. The first time was just unfortunate.

Michel Chaudun

"His impressive, true-to-life chocolate creations are well-known around Paris and he is regularly called upon for his special artistic skill."

I was drawn to Chaudun's store (also close to my school) for the cute molded chocolates in the window. ...Not that I was willing to shell out that much money for something I could eat in one bite. But I did try some non-bunny shaped chocolate pieces, which were tasty. Although I wasn't allowed to take a photo of the shop's interior (where some of his impressive chocolate sculptures are displayed), I was given the chance to take my photo with the chocolate master. He was really friendly and sweet! I think I even said something to him in French that may or may not have made any sense! Hoorah!

October 8, 2006: bread, flaky rolled up things, pho, and macarons

Rollet Pradier

another view for no reason crust innards

Cahill didn't mention the bread specifically, but I visited Rollet Pradier because it was on Jeffrey Steingarten's "Best Baguettes" list. And while it was good, it definitely wasn't one of my favorites. Then again, Steingarten wasn't a fan of Secco's baguette, which I loved. Maybe my baguette taste is different.

Secco Patisserie-Boulangerie

Poujauran perfectly stacked! from above cheesecake loved by many innards IMG_2897
Deliciousness from Secco.
"The cheesecake (for the many expats and tourists in the neighborhood, Secco says) is made with 0% fat fromage blanc (fromage blanc comes in either 0%, 20%, or 40% fat), creating a delightfully light version of the traditionally rich Anglo-Saxon dessert. . . . The madeleines are among Paris' best. They have an unusual flavor, attributable to a "secret" recipe featuring sucre vergeoise, a sticky brown sugar, rather than the refined white variety. Secco also adds a tiny hint of lemon. The cakes' darker color and coarser texture is unique, but wonderful."

One afternoon in my French I class (which obviously didn't take me very far), one of my classmates had brought in a small box wrapped in white paper. Inside was a dainty cheesecake, indented in the center and decorated with a plump raspberry.

"This is the best cheesecake ever," she said in between bites.

So I had to get it. And she were right; Secco's cheesecake was great and now thanks to Cahill I know why. One of the reasons I don't usually like cheesecake is because I find it displeasingly sticky and heav, but this version was light, although still rich and creamy without being stomach deadening.

Also thanks to Cahill, I now know the "secret" to Secco's madeleines. The first time I had them, I became addicted to the point that I went to the bakery twice in one day to replenish my decreasing madeleine stock. Never before had I eaten such a delicious madeleine—the texture was heartier than most others and moist when I've found others to be dry, and the flavor more complex, a nice mix of nutty and buttery. Sadly though, when Umami came to visit and was nice enough to fulfill my request for a bucket of Secco's madeleines (really, she had a small bucket!), they didn't taste as good as before. They were...too buttery. I mean, they smelled nice, but then I'd take a bite and mostly taste butter. I don't know if an extra block of butter fell into that batch or if they reformulated the recipe to make everyone fatter, but it just wasn't right.

Most things I've had at Secco (or as I usually referred to it, Poujauran) were totally right, though. The baguette de tradition, the croissants (which, unlike the baguette, is Steingarten-approved), the rolls, the viennoiseries, the savory things...maybe not so much the macarons, but 99% of the stuff. It was my favorite bakery, partially because I passed it almost every morning, but mostly because it was reasonably priced, charmingly decorated, and offered a large selection of unique breads and pastries.

Related (LOADS OF EM)
September 11, 2006: I'm surrounded by bakeries
September 15, 2006: Chez Janou and Poujauran piggery
September 29, 2006: I'm really glad I'm not gluten intolerant
October 8, 2006: bread, flaky rolled up things, pho, and macarons
November 6, 2006: The girl who ate more than everything: pastries, more pastries (Part 2 of 3)
Deember 28, 2006: Last day in Paris
March 18, 2007: Spring Break in Paris: Day 1
April 2, 2007: Spring Break in Paris: Day 7 & 8

Cafe Lenôtre


Lenôtre is all over Paris, although there is a main one...that I never went to. I bought a variety pack of macarons from one of their shops and while the macarons were good, they were far from mindblowing. I didn't feel compelled to try anything else from Lenôtre, although I figure their other desserts are great. It'd be awesome to have this store in New York, but in Paris I was draw more towards places like Secco. ...And Pierre Herme.

October 14, 2006: Vegetarian food, macarons, chocolate, undulating pastries, etc.


Fauchon pretty cakes pile of...three pretty eclair

Fauchon is where you go to look at really expensive foodstuffs. Ha ha. Kinda. The store is beautiful, the cakes look like no others, and pastries (the fancy eclairs in particular) are on display like jewelry. They also sell high quality produce for crazy people (although a lot of that stuff is probably hard to find elsewhere). I tried some macarons, which, while better than average, were sweeter than what I preferred.

September 24, 2006: running in Paris with a towel on my head
September 29, 2006: I'm really glad I'm not gluten intolerant


seating salted butter caramel large macarons vanilla millefeuille
Mm, tasties.
"Crunching slight at impact, then turning chewy and revealing intensely-flavored cream inside, Laduree's vivid-hued macarons hold their own. Laduree sets each almond flour cookie aside for two days after baking to achieve the perfect texture and consistency before it joins the colorful assortment for sale at the pastry counter.

Ladurée's macarons are my (somewhat distant, but worth checking out) second favorite after Pierre Hermé's. The shop isn't as inviting as PH's, but at Ladurée you can sit down and enjoy a cup of thick hot chocolate with a pastry...or three. The classic tarte tatin may sound like a boring option, but theirs is easily the best I've ever had. I can't imagine that anything there doesn't taste good, but if they have something that you can also get at PH, I'd rather get it at PH. However, Ladurée macarons are more suited for gifting as they have an array of sturdy, nicely decorated boxes that can survive a plane ride home.

October 8, 2006: bread, flaky rolled up things, pho, and macarons
October 21, 2006: Café du Marché, Ladurée, Les Deux Magots, and more Ladurée

La Petite Rose

La Petite Rose maccies hot choc caake
Chocolaty things.

I wouldn't have made it out to La Petite Rose after a tiring day of walking and eating if not for Alex—it was his favorite spot for hot chocolate near his homestay. The hot chocolate wasn't as sweet as I would've liked, but I'm not the best judge of hot chocolate seeing as my favorite kind of chocolate is "milk" (I've tried to get used to dark chocolate, but the bitterness always makes my taste buds cry), a fact that many chocolate lovers may feel like lynching me for. I had a great chocolate cake of some sort with layers of chocolate mousse and crunchy bits.

March 24, 2007: Spring Break in Paris: Day 4

Arnaud Delmontel

Arnaud Delmontel best croissants! mm stuff preeetty
"Delmontel is best-known for his trademark Choco'Miss kid's treat, a raspberry cream and chocolate ganache-filled biscuit in the stylized form of a Japanese cartoon character.

Unfortunately I didn't try anything from Arnaud Delmontel; I just happened to pass it one Sunday afternoon and as I felt too full to eat anything (YES, THIS HAPPENS, it is very soul crushing), I only took photos of the delicious looking cakes in the window. If only I had their Choco'Miss cake! Aside from that, their window proclaimed to having the best croissants in the 9ème and the macarons don't look shabby either. ....D'oh.


mia / July 5, 2008 5:22 PM

Damn you and those bread pictures... not to mention the macaroons. I need them ALLLLLL.

All I have here today are those fake potato chips in a can. Feel my pain.

Christina / July 6, 2008 3:28 PM

Yes, I can relate to the madeleine experience. After eating something good I always wonder if it'll taste the same the next time. If it doesn't, I sometimes pretends it does anyway. Out of spite.


roboppy / July 7, 2008 12:31 AM

mia: I used to love fake potato chips. ...Not as good as baguettes though.

Leigh: Glad you liked it!

Christina: I really wanted it to taste the same, but after eating a so didn't. :(

Julie / July 7, 2008 2:33 AM

Yeah, these patisseries posts have proven that I need to spend a lot of time in France if and when I go. Otherwise, I'm going to get really big, really quickly. (It might be more comfortable to space out the big getting.)

G / July 7, 2008 9:30 AM

Thanks Robyn for this wonderful series. Actually makes me hate not being in Paris right now to taste all that wonderful stuff ;)

auntjone / July 7, 2008 1:50 PM

I made some tasty madelines for my classical pastries final 2 years ago. They were good and rather easy to make. I will have to make more.

I now want to attempt macarons. If I am successful (at least by my standards which means they don't taste or look like death)I will let you know. I've never had one so I may have to do some "research" before I try.

Don't fret over your tastebuds rejecting anything but milk chocolate. I used to despise darker chocolates but have come to appreciate them as I've gotten older. One of the few things you get to look forward to as you age: your tastebuds become more accepting of things you never thought you'd like.

roboppy / July 7, 2008 11:28 PM

Julie: Shoving the big getting in a week is probably scary. Make it at least two weeks..or three months...WHATEVER!!


Aunt Jone: Man, when I made madeleines they sucked! Maybe I should try again.

Definitely try to eat a macaron before trying to make it. I'm not sure I could've made em if I didn't know what the end result should resemble, heh. Good luck!

EB: Chomp some buns...don't we all?

amy yi / July 8, 2008 5:02 PM

I just discovered your blog and love it!

I'm going to Paris in 2 weeks and I'll definitely be putting La Petite Rose on my itinerary!

Would love for you to check out my site as well. All about food with a bit of humor of course :)

Rodney / July 11, 2008 4:48 PM

Great post!!!! Baguettes and madeleine's. Yum!!!

Did you ever visit a great little muffin shop on rue Saint Dominique? It is very close to Patisserie Millet. I forgot the name but they sure had great muffins. I know muffins in Paris?

Anyway, I have been on a search for the best baguettes is Orange County, California. Here are some of my finds so far(if you are interested):!


PS. Keep up the great work!!!!!

roboppy / July 13, 2008 12:32 PM

Rodney: MUFFIN SHOP? There was a muffin shop? I totally didn't see that.. :( And I passed Millet all the time! Poop. Yeah, didn't see much muffin action in Paris, hehe...well, I stuck to the croissant-y things. Thanks for the Orange County recs! Not sure if I'll ever go out there, but ye never knoow.

Rodney / July 13, 2008 9:52 PM


Yeah, the muffin shop was in between Rue Cler and Rue Amelie. I think it could have actually been on Rue de Grenelle. I will have to go through my pictures again.

Anyway, I tried the chocolate chip muffin. It was a bit creamier than an American muffin.


miss ghesquiere / August 2, 2008 11:44 AM

we have a fauchon store and cafe here in Kuwait, i go there quite frequently (lemon tart is to DIE!!) but i hear you about the crazy stuff, i once bought a mini tea tin, a chocolate rabbit and 6 small choc peices for over $45 US!! thats crazy!
Lenotre's Opera (i think thats it) cake is super-good, though. And last thing, you are gona make me so fat.. im going to study in Paris this year and would have been better off without those recommendations! Whenever im dieting i visit your site cause it offers the most in-depth visuals at high-fattening, strictly off-limits foods!

roboppy / August 4, 2008 12:44 AM

miss ghesquiere: Ahhh I wanna study in Paris again! wait, I just wanna be in paris without the studying. I hope you get to try my recs!

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