Paris -- A Haven for Chocolate Lovers
Journeywoman, Sally Peabody specializes in Paris. She
writes about culinary artisans, tea, chocolate, off-the-beaten-path
quarters and other Paris topics for online and print
asked Sally to share some of her favorite chocolate
boutiques as well as salons de chocolat in Paris. This
is the delicious response we received. Read it, print
it, take it with you on your next trip to Paris. A bit
of gorgeous chocolate goes a long way when you are sightseeing
and pounding the pavement in the City of Lights. Sally
is paradise for women who believe delectable chocolates
are a basic food group. Even better, Paris is tops for
its sheer abundance of venerable and upstart master-chocolatiers
who create boundary-breaking flavors. When you visit
you must make note of the exquisite shops with their
mind-bendingly beautiful displays, their small salons
de chocolat serving decadent, handcrafted chocolate
beverages, perfect patisserie and beautiful bonbons.
Then there are the glorious Parisian salons de thé
serving fine teas and chocolate in various delectable
guises, and voila! The possibilities are infinite for
anything from a quick pick-me-up to leisurely savoring.
each Parisian quarter has its beloved chocolate shops,
many are indisputably world class in their quality.
Here is my female-friendly sampler of worthwhile venues
sampling, sipping and savoring, JourneyWomen.
You will indeed be in paradise!
We’ll start with the right bank. The
rue St. Honoré is home to two noted
chocolatiers, conveniently located just
a few blocks apart. The boutique and tearoom
of master chocolatier Jean
Paul Hevin is a must-visit.
The unmistakable scent of rich, dark chocolate
envelops you as you enter. Take the time
to assess the remarkable selection of chocolates
and luscious chocolate-based patisserie
available here. Hevin’s chocolates
are the finest and his selections evolve
constantly. The sweet tearoom upstairs is
a lovely lunch spot for those women desiring
sophisticated salads of all types. Still,
this spot is even better in late afternoon
when one can relax over a Mariage Frères
tea or a chocolat chaud with one of the
twenty-plus exquisite patisseries. Address:
231 rue St. Honoré.
Just a few blocks from Hevin, Michel
Cluizel has a glorious boutique
filled with his chocolate creations, all
beautifully displayed and packaged. This
is a chocolate shop only, no salon, and
is very vaut-le-voyage. Great for both gifts
and immediate enjoyment. Address: 201 rue
Shoppers know the Avenue Victor Hugo for
its fashion boutiques, but two marvelous
chocolate boutiques add immeasurably to
the mix. Mazet
Confiseur Deluxe at number
116 is the sole Paris shop of this Montargis-based
chocolatier. Lovers of tea and chocolate
must try the rich, dark treats filled with
top-quality matcha and the irresistible
little “Chokothés” --
round chocolates flavored with Darjeeling
tea enrobing spicy ginger. Simply delicious!
Now add to this perfection the fact that
these Chokothé candies are packed
in adorable boxes resembling tiny pink pocketbooks.
So clever. Such great gifts!
located at 184 Avenue Victor Hugo, is your
second chocolate-destination, close to the
shopping delights of Passy. Bossier, founded
in 1827, features their special “Petales
de Fleurs” which are white, milk and
dark chocolate molded to resemble rose petals,
flavored with various spices, or crispy
tea leaves, lavender, floral scents and
other good things. Bossier crafts a full
selection of fine chocolates, including
several infused with teas. The shop features
a selection of custom tea-blends, including
a tea with chocolate mélange (mix).
The friendly staff is always happy to discuss
pairing teas and chocolates with their clientele.
On the left bank, master chocolatier Christian
and adjacent salon de chocolat are must-visit
destinations for exquisite chocolates and
patisserie. Located just off the Luxembourg
Gardens and close to the shopping delights
of St. Germain, Constant is a luminous star
in the glorious Paris-chocolate-galaxy.
Constant is a true artist, fascinated by
his métier. He travels the world
to source the best chocolate. His current
focus is on expanding his selection of chocolates
flavored with pure floral essences, infusing
premium chocolate with subtle, handmade
essential oils, to create redolent small
masterpieces. He also crafts dark chocolates
flavored with teas plus a broad selection
of French chocolate-classics. Constant's
glorious pastries include the “Sonia
Rykiel,” a tart incorporating luscious
chocolate ganache and perfectly arranged
so-thin slices of banana. Oh my goodness
it's pure heaven!
With its select menu of gourmet salads,
sandwiches and a hot plat du jour, Constant’s
tiny salon is a great destination for lunch.
And of course, throughout the afternoon
the salon is a fine destination for a cup
of decadent chocolat chaud, tea, coffee
and patisserie or ice cream. Located at
37 rue d’Assas, a street once home
to Gertrude Stein, the experience of visiting
Christian Constant causes one to wax philosophical
about life’s serendipities.
This list of boutiques very well worth a
visit would not be complete without mentioning
Chokolade, 62 rue Monsieur
le Prince, just off the Latin-Quarter-side
of the Luxembourg Gardens. This is the Paris-shop
of Denmark’s premier artisanal chocolatier
and it is noteworthy for several reasons.
The proprietaires, Lars and Lene Boehme
are engaging and speak fine English. The
chocolates are both classic and creative
-- try the addictive small chocolate rounds
topped with chili and roasted pumpkin seeds.
This shop, somewhat unusually for Paris,
sells dark milk as well as white chocolates.
The Boehmes' white chocolate is loaded with
flavor and worth a try, even for totally
committed dark-chocolate lovers. Upstairs
you’ll find a sweet little salon with
comfy chairs and a menu of handcrafted chocolate
drinks. Other unusual products, great for
gifting, include jars of chocolate body-paint
(edible!) and chocolate pyramids, perfect
for making single portions of hot chocolate
Did you know?
The 119-year old Eiffel Tower is 1,063 feet high, Including the 79 foot TV antenna atop its roof. That's about 80+ stories tall. No wonder TV reception is so good in Paris.
It takes tons of paint to keep the tower free of rust. In order to maintain a uniform appearance to an observer on the ground, three separate colors of paint are used, with the darkest on the bottom and the lightest at the top. Reminds the viewer of Disney's Cinderella castles with their smaller than life size windows higher up to create the illusion of height.
If you'd like more woman-friendly information about Paris, just click here
and you'll be amazed at all the goodies you will find.