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 media.
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 writes...
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 for chocolate-lovers.
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 St. Honoré.
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
Constant’s boutique 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 Peter
Beier 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 back home.
sampling, sipping and savoring, JourneyWomen. You will
indeed be in paradise!