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a little bite of

April 2011


goes to PARIS: the land of macarons


{a little bite of: Paris}

table of contents

✴ welcome |


✴ where to eat |


✴ boulangeries and pâtisseries | 14 ✴ shopping for: kitchen, decor and clothes | 16 ✴ things to do | 24 ✴ the art of macarons | 26

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Most of the places I talk about have a link to their website; just point their name and click. Keep in mind that store hours are subject to change, so please check their oďŹƒcial webpages before visiting. Please note that some of the stores or restaurants listed might have one or more locations around Paris, not just the one included. Everything written is my opinion only, I haven’t been paid or otherwise compensated to write this. The pictures are all taken by me. Š Ainhoa Vega Bayo, 2011

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welcome, I can’t express how much fun writing this short newsletter has been. From the brainstorming while in Paris to thinking of the images and the layout back at home, it has given me the opportunity to explore my creativity – in writing, photography, and design. I’ve been to Paris several times now, but I always discover something new. When I was young, it was the magic of Disneyworld and the kids’ playing area inside the Luxembourg Gardens; once I went back as part of a High School trip, the bustling streets of Montmartre won me over. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve started to appreciate the less known places of Paris even more. All this to say that this isn’t meant to be an exhaustive, tourist guide of Paris; but rather a collection of ideas and suggestions for people who share my passions: traveling, good food, photography, home decor... all wrapped up in a beautiful design. I sure hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed working on it. With love,

Ainhoa a little bite | 5_

where to

eat Whether you’re on a budget or want to splurge on a special occasion, there are countless options to dine out in Paris. Most places offer what they call formule déjeneur, which usually consists of appetizer +entreé, entreé+dessert, or appetizer+ entreé +dessert. And if you find yourself without a restaurant in sight, buy a french baguette from a local bakery and some cheese, fruit and wine at a supermarket. Don’t forget to indulge in a pâtisserie for dessert! a few suggestions…

Un Dimanche à Paris | A chocolate concept store ✴


Papilles | Simple french cuisine at its best

Raspail Food Market | Local, fresh ingredients ✴

Le Fumoir | Popular among tourists & french alike

Galleries ✴

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Lafayette | Check out the Gourmet area

Bon Marché | La Grande Épicerie de Paris

un dimanche à paris

wanted dessert, it is a chocolate concept store

4-6-8 Cour de Commerce Saint André 75006 Restaurant hours: 12-15h; 19-22:30h Choc salon hours: 9-12h; 15-19h Store hours: 10-20h

after all! Before the appetizer they always serve a small amuse-bouche to start the meal. For the entreé, we both ordered the pork, prepared in two ways: pork chops, simply prepared but deliciously cooked, and braised pork hidden as a “surprise” inside slices of pineapple.

This  ”concept store”, restaurant and chocolate salon revolves around… you guessed it, chocolate. It opened about three months ago and it’s already packed with people, especially for brunch on Sundays. The owner is Pierre Cluizel, son of the famous chocolate artisan Michel Cluizel. I went there on Friday for lunch and had the Menu du Déjeuner (a fixed price lunch menu). There are three options: an appetizer + entreé for 25€, an entreé + pâtisserie (dessert) for 25€, or appetizer + entreé + pâtisserie for 33€. You get to choose among 2-3 appetizers and entreés, and 7-8

Everything was delicious, but I found out later that it’s cheaper to order the appetizer + entreé at the restaurant and have your pâtisserie at the chocolate store, so that’s a good option if you want to save a few euros. You can also order the pâtisserie at the store and eat it elsewhere, at the Luxembourg gardens for example. They’ll even add a couple of free chocolates to your bag of pâtisseries! I also bought some chocolate-making utensils at the store: they were very reasonably priced and of good quality.

pâtisseries. I had the third option because I Bonus: they serve you a small complimentary wanted to try the appetizer, a cauliflower soup platter with two chocolates for each person at with salmon on the side. And obviously I the table when you pay.

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luxembourg gardens

les papilles 30 rue Gay Lussac 75005 Closed on Sundays It’s a restaurant near the Luxembourg Gardens. Also a fixed price lunch menu, we went there on Saturday. Your best bet is to have the fixed lunch menu (33€), since dinnertime is always busier. Lunch includes: - A soup or cream with croutons, etc. They

- A meat based dish, also served on a big pot and you help yourself to it. We had braised beef cheeks with baby potatoes, carrots, mushrooms and mini scallions. The servings are huge! - Cheese, in our case blue cheese with prune. - Dessert, normally some type of panna cotta. We had banana panna cotta with toffee. I don’t normally like banana on my desserts, but this one was pretty good. I liked the

present you the dish with the croutons,

toffee part better though.

bacon bits; and the soup in a big bowl, you

You can ask for tap water and it includes

help yourself to the soup. I had a leek soup

bread, plus you don’t have to leave a tip (it’s

with croutons, bacon bits, curry.... Delicious.


boulevard raspail food market Boulevard Raspail, between Rue du Cherche-Midi and Rue de Rennes Mon-Fri-Sun (organic)

and french cheese, or tuna and vegetables, and preparing a simple meal. You’ll save a bit of money and enjoy a tasty dinner while relaxing! If you find yourself at the market during lunchtime, consider buying a couple of savory

A great plan for Sundays, since almost

tartalettes at one of the stands – they’re only

everything (even bakeries) is closed. The

2.5€ each and make for a great on-the-go

stands are full of fresh ingredients and

lunch. You can even take them to the nearby

homemade products, and on Sundays, they are

Luxembourg Gardens and eat them there. My

all organic. If you’re lucky enough to be

favorite one was zucchini (courgettes) but I

staying in an apartment, I definitely

also tried cheese, onions, and leeks: they were

recommend buying some of the fresh pasta

all delicious.

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le fumoir You can also have lunch there, or

6 rue de L’Amiral Coligny 75001 Open every day 11h-2h

brunch on Sundays (another good option, since most things are closed

It’s a big place that’s on a corner in

on Sundays!).

front of the Louvre museum. If you Because it’s next to the Louvre have a cup of coffee they serve you museum it’s a well known place some cookies or biscuits; and if you among tourists, but it’s also loved by have a bite to eat or a glass of wine locals. you’ll have some complimentary almonds.

galleries lafayette 40 boulevard Haussmann 75009 Mon-Sat 9h-20h (Thu until 21h)

take out food (or you can eat it there as well), an upscale supermarket and millions of different spices and herbs sold by weight.

A shopping classic in Paris, the Do a bit of shopping and grab a bite Gourmet area is also perfect for to eat afterwards when you get foodies. You’ll find an amazing array hungry! You can’t go wrong. of pâtisseries, macarons, and other

delectable treats. But don’t worry, not everything they have is dessert: there’s an impressive array of delicious

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explore the hidden corners of the Louvre and end the morning walk

with a wonderful meal across the street at Le Fumoir

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le bon marché

38 rue de Sèvres 75007 Store hours: 10-20h Mon-TueWed-Sat; 10-21h Thu-Fri. Sundays closed. La Grande Épicerie de Paris at Le Bon Marché is a huge gourmet “supermarket” – you’ll find products classified by ingredients (oils, salts, sugar, pasta...) and by type of cuisine (italian, japanese, mexican, ...).

and then grabbing something to eat at the back. I’m sure you’ll find several hard-tofind ingredients to use at home and you’ll have a satisfying lunch. You can eat at the bar inside or, if the weather is nice, at a small park that’s one minute away. It even has a vintage carousel! While you’re there, you might as well take a look around the rest of the Bon Marché, it’s a department store that sells all kinds of things.

Besides cooking ingredients and utensils,

Don’t forget to try the macarons: at 1€/

there’s an area at the back that offers lots

piece, they’re moderately priced (by

of take out options, like a traiteur. I

macaron standards) and a sweet way to

suggest checking out the entire store first;

end the day.

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pâtisseries and boulangeries Eric Kayser rue Monge Very famous bread baker, it has several stores around Paris. Some of them close on Sundays, so you should be careful with that. Otherwise you might find yourself with no bread to eat your cheese for dinner. I really liked their baguette and their chocolate plié (better than the pain au chocolat).

Georges Larnicol 132 boulevard Saint-Germain It’s right next to Un Dimanche A Paris, and you should definitely check it out even if it’s just for the gorgeous the window shop display. The macarons are really cheap compared to other places (45€/kg, I think; we bought 8 and paid 4.50€); although I have to say I liked others better. Except for the praliné flavored one, that was one of the best macarons I’ve ever had. But if you go to Georges Larnicol, what you should be buying is the Kouign Amann (a Breton specialty). It’s a mix between a pastry and a pie, and they recommend warming it for a bit in the oven before eating it. I think I like it even more than croissants! They sell it as pies (7.50€) or in individual muffin sized portions in different flavors (chocolate, coconut, salted caramel, raspberry…). I tried the salted caramel and the chocolate ones, and they were both amazing. _14 | a little bite

Art Macaron 129 boulevard du Montparnasse Definitely try the macarons... (obviously). They’re 1.50€ a piece and well worth the price. The pâtisseries also looked delicious.

Pierre Hermé 72 rue Bonaparte A classic. There’s normally a line so you might have to wait, but it’s definitely worth it. Eat lunch somewhere and have dessert here! You won’t regret it.

Ladurée 21 rue Bonaparte Another classic. The macarons are, in my opinion, the best in Paris and the presentation is excellent. They also have several stores around the city.

La Pâtisserie des Rêves 93 rue du Bac They call it des rêves for a reason: the display is like a dream! They also sell Kouign Amann, but I like the one from Georges Larnicol better. Nevertheless, this pâtisserie has some excellent brioche. If you can buy some just before leaving Paris, do so and use it to prepare some french toast back home. The Saint-Honoré is also delicious, and the brioche feuilletée is excellent.

Des Gateaux et du Pain 63 boulevard Pasteur By Claire Damon, one of Pierre Hermé’s students. The bread was one of the best we had while visiting. The whole store was sophisticated and tastefully decorated. They are open on Sundays, too!

Stohrer 51 rue Montorgueil One of the oldest pâtisseries in Paris. Try the wild strawberry tartelette! a little bite | 15_

shopping for:

kitchen, home decor and clothes No visit to Paris is complete without some shopping. If you’re a first time visitor and are wondering what things are worth buying for yourself or to bring back home as a gift, here’s a few suggestions: 1. Macarons at Ladurée for a classy option or 4. Kitchen supplies that are hard to find at Le Bon Marché if you’re on a budget.

elsewhere: ingredients such as sucre

The cheapest macarons I’ve seen to date

pétillant or good quality silicon molds of

are sold at Georges Larnicol; however,

different forms. For example, I bought one

except for the praliné flavored ones, I would

that has the form of shot glasses; you can

go with any of the other two stores.

put them in the freezer with water to create

2. Baguettes for breakfast, or a mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack. Healthier than croissants but just as good. 3. Kouign Amann is a great option if you want to bring a treat for someone back home and you’re worried about the croissants getting smooshed during the trip. In individual portions or bigger pies, they sell them at

your ice shot glasses, bake sablé dough and fill them with fruits, or make chocolate cups to fill with mousse. 5. Fraises Tagada, (right, pictured) a 40 year old french candy. They’re inexpensive and you can find them in supermarkets, so it’s a great gift idea for friends with a sweet tooth.

Georges Larnicol and Le Pâtisserie des 6. A chic parisian style dress. I recommend Rêves.

Nina Kendosa, very stylish and almost everything is priced under 40€.

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The original fraises tagada are the darker ones; they started selling the lighter, more acid flavor later on

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kitchen supply stores






artre ontm rue m

du lo uvre

There’s an area just north of Les Halles that has several kitchen supply stores practically next door to each other – check it out!



2 ur

e u r



E. Dehillerin 18 et 20 rue Coquillière One of the oldest kitchen supply stores in Paris. It has a ton of good quality silicon molds in different forms and sizes. For example, a mold for mini-financiers will run you 12€. I also liked the countless pots and pans they had – you should try to pick one up and see how much they weigh! Unlike other stores that have been renovated over the years, E. Dehillerin looks the same as it did almost 200 years ago when it opened in 1820. Definitely worth a visit.

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G. Detou 58 rue Tiquetonne A very stylish store – albeit a bit more expensive than the others mentioned. You’ll find some rare ingredients like candied violet flowers, cocoa butter, and good quality vanilla beans. They don’t sell kitchen utensils though, just ingredients; so I’d also visit E. Dehillerin or Mora (for silicon molds for example).

La Bovida 36 rue Montmartre Also a very old (but remodeled) kitchen store. Perfect for bigger kitchen gadgets; they had tons of Kitchen Aids on display! I also liked the different cookbooks they were selling. But the best part was on the upper floor: a huge assortment of catering supply items. They had a number of small dishes, made of (hard) reusable plastic, glass, and ceramic; perfect to serve appetizers at your next party!

Mora 13 rue Montmartre With an opening year of 1814, it’s even older than E. Dehillerin, although it was renovated a few years ago. The perfect store for baking enthusiasts: you’ll find molds of all shapes and sizes. Trust me, after visiting Mora, you’ll want molds of shapes that you didn’t even know existed. Here’s where I bought the shot glass silicon mold and also a mini-donuts mold. They also carry Mycryo Barry, a cocoa butter that is extremely hard to find elsewhere.

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Other kitchen supply stores around Paris: 1. Culinarion, 99 rue de Rennes 2.Genevieve Lethu, 95 rue de Rennes _20 | a little bite

3.Kitchen Bazaar, 11 avenue Maine

home decor Blanc D’Ivoire



4 rue Jacob 104 rue du Bac

156 rue de Rivoli

117 rue du Bac

Beautiful home accessories, I especially liked some lamps they had.

Next to the Louvre, perfect for throw pillows (approx. 20â‚Ź), curtains, and accessories. Their reusable bag is gorgeous.

Maisons du Monde

Comptoir de Famille

208 Porte Berger

34 rue St. Sulpice

This one is actually British, but equally interesting. A legend in the world of interior design.

Muji Passage Rambuteau 27 rue St. Sulpice

They also have

Cute accessories

Like a Japanese

several of these

and gift ideas. They

Ikea. Good design

stores around Spain

have more stores in

and good prices.

and I love them.

Paris but this one is

Definitely worth

Very reasonably

the best location

checking it out!



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parisian style for three different 1. Paule Ka A French pret-a-porter brand created in 1988 by Serge Cajfinger. The dresses are beautiful, but they can be a bit expensive, especially now since they’ve become quite well-known. Dresses can cost between 500€-600€ each.

2. Tara Jarmon Tara Jarmon is more affordable and you’ll love the selection they have. Their dresses are classic and timeless in design; they won’t be “out” next season. Dresses run you 150€-200€, so it’s a good splurge if you can afford it!

3. Nina Kendosa It has several stores least one of them. thing! I love the inexpensive: most of

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around Paris, and you should definitely go to at I guarantee you’ll come out with at least one dresses they have; they’re very stylish but them are 50€ or less.


Nina Kendosa

Tara Jarmon

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things to do around Paris

You’ve probably guessed it by now, but I’m not a fan of the traditional visiting-museums-and-normal-touristy-places types of trips. But here’s a few of the things I recommend if it’s your first time visiting: 1. Set up aside a day to do walking along rue Mouffetard touristy stuff. You are a and the Promenade Plantée. tourist after all, and if you’ve 3. Enjoy the local food. Now’s never seen the Eiffel tower, the time to sit back, relax, you probably want to do and enjoy your vacation. that! Have a lazy breakfast, lunch 2. Walk, walk, walk, and then or dinner, you’ve earned it. walk some more. The best 4. Shop around a bit. Whether way to discover Paris (or any it’s clothes, food, or small place, for that matter) is by gifts for your friends, be sure walking and discovering new to factor in some shopping things. Plus it’ll help burn off time. all the croissants you’ll likely be eating. I especially like 5. Enjoy! You’re in Paris! _24 | a little bite

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the art of macarons

Once you’re back home, try your hand at

making your own macarons – it’ll be like having a piece of Paris right with you!

A good place to start learning the technique is Helene Dujardin’s food blog Tartelette

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lessons I’ve learned while making macarons 1. Sifting the ground almonds and the sugar is actually important. Yes, this step might seem pointless, and in other recipes it is, but not in this case! 2. Use a plastic pastry bag. I once used the fabric ones I had and they were horrible. They oozed a lot and my hands were a mess. Plus I ended up throwing them out because they were impossible to clean. 3. Practice with different tips to pipe small circles. A lot of my macarons weren’t perfecly round… nor did they match in size… 4. The macaron shells are only half of the battle: the filling recipe you use will either make it or break it! 5. Get to know your oven. The macaron shells in the back baked perfectly, while the ones in the front were slightly underbaked. This is easily solved by rotating the baking sheet when they’re half done.

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A Guide to Paris