Oh-la-la! This post is dedicated to the best bakeries in Paris – the sweetest place on earth.
So I’m back from Paris… with an extra few pounds that were totally worth it!
Let me start by saying that I tried my best to keep this post short and to concentrate only on the important stuff. I swear, I really did try!
Notes before you read:
– Although some shops have more than one location, I only mention one for each. I chose shops that were either in the most convenient location and close to tourist centers, or ones that were recommended to me.
– Paris is divided into areas by numbers (e.g., 1st, 2nd, 3rd). I’ve included the area number for each shop by its name.
– Opening hours change all the time, so if you plan on going to a specific shop on a weekend or late in the evening, double check if it’s open.
– I didn’t manage to make it to all the pastry shops on my list. Even being the sweet freak I am, I’m only human – I get tired and I (sadly) get stomach aches if I eat too much sugar. Regardless, I included them in this post since they were highly recommended by others. For these shops, I have only mentioned their location and contact details without specific recommendations.
Oh, Paris! Here we go!
For the experience and the hot chocolate, the line is worth it.
Address: 226 Rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris
Phone: +33 1 42 60 82 00
Monday – Friday, 7:30 am to 7:00 pm. Saturday & Sunday, 8:30 am to 7:00 pm
Angelina is famous for their hot chocolate and for a good reason – it’s some of the best I’ve ever come across! I believe the long queue has something to do with this hot chocolate, but even just sitting in this place to enjoy the pleasant atmosphere is worthwhile. The shop is HUGE and has a beautiful royal look and feel in part thanks to the gold painted walls. It’s just what you’d expect from romantic, classic Paris.
The most popular dessert served there, and the one recommended by the waiters, is the Mont Blanc – a dessert of sweetened chestnut. Personally, I didn’t really like it; it was a bit too sweet for my taste (and I barely ever say something is too sweet). I tasted the same dessert in different places and came to the conclusion that I just don’t like it anywhere. No hard feelings, Angelina.
Jean-Paul Hevin (1st)
Known for his amazing chocolate, and just a 2 minute-walk from Angelina.
Address: 231 Rue Saint-Honoré, 75001 Paris
Phone: +33 1 55 35 35 96
Monday – Saturday, 10:00 am to 7:30 pm. Closed on Sundays.
While Erez waited in line for Angelina, I figured I’d take a quick walk and give Jean-Paul Hevin a quick try. I ordered the Tonka dessert, which was nothing sort of fantastic! The Princess dessert is also recommended.
Jacques Genin (3rd)
The greatest experience, hot chocolate, caramels, pate de fruits, and best chocolates ever!
Address: 133, rue de Turenne75003 Paris
Phone: +33 1 45 77 29 01
Tuesday – Sunday, 11:00 am to 7:00 pm. Closed on Mondays.
When I first stepped into Jacques Genin’s little heaven, I was blown away. This place is known for:
The cozy yet gorgeous look.
The hot chocolate… Oh, the hot chocolate! Don’t you dare miss that!
The pâte de fruits.
The flavored caramels. I have never in my life tasted anything close to his caramels. This is what caramel is meant to be. Definitely the real deal.
The chocolates (some of the best I’ve ever tasted).
See the chocolates in the above picture? You get them for free if you sit down and order anything. If you plan to buy chocolate, be sure to do it afterwards. Every piece has its own magic and is an explosion of flavor in your mouth. All five together just weren’t enough!
Important notes: Desserts change daily. Desserts and hot chocolate can be ordered only when seated. The sitting area is very small, and I’m not sure how full it gets in high season.
Must try: Hot chocolate (chocolate chaud), paris brest (if you’re lucky enough to go on a day they make this dessert), caramels (passion fruit-mango is delicious), pate de fruit, and chocolate (hazelnut or those with spices, but you can’t really go wrong here).
What I’ve seen other bloggers recommend: Lemon tart, chocolate tart, caramel tart, and éclairs (caramel & chocolate).
So basically, everything is recommended!
To learn more, read David Lebovitz’s article: http://www.davidlebovitz.com/2012/09/jacques-genin-paris-chocolate-pastry/
Carl Marletti (5th)
Amazing salted caramel éclair and Lily Valley!
Address: 51, rue Censier, 75005
Phone: +33 1 43 31 68 12
Tuesday – Saturday, 10:00 am to 8:00 pm. Sunday, 10:00 am to 1:30 pm. Closed on Mondays.
I had a map marked with shops all over it. Carl Marletti was kind of out of the way, so I initially decided to pass. Luckily, on my last day in Paris, I bumped into it by mistake. When I realized what I’d found, I literally jumped with happiness. Erez thought something was wrong with me!
Since I knew this would be the last pastry shop I’d visit during the trip, I went wild and ordered 4 desserts. Let me just say this: OMG. That’s all I really can say about it! Everything was so good that I could barely even speak. My absolute favorite was the salted caramel éclair, which was delectable and simply fantastic. I also loved the Lily Valley – choux puffs with a violet essence, and their pistachio éclairs.
Bumping into this shop was fate, I’m telling you!
Un Dimanche à Paris (6th)
A great place to buy sweets to bring home to your loved ones.
Address: 4 Cours du Commerce Saint-André, 75006 Paris
Phone: +33 1 56 81 18 18
Tuesday – Saturday, 11:00 am to 10:00 pm. Sunday, 7:00 pm. Closed Monday.
When I found this store, I spent at least 10 minutes just wandering around and looking at all the offerings. It’s filled with pastries, macarons, chocolates, spreads, and many other sweets that you can easily bring back home with you. I wanted everything! Ultimately, I bought their hazelnut-chocolate spread and pepper chocolate pearls – a perfect combination of flavors – and tasted a mind-blowing dessert called ‘Croustillant au Grué de cocoa’. They also offer hot chocolate, but I didn’t get to taste it (very hard choices had to be made throughout the trip).
The staff was incredibly friendly and patient. Since some desserts are seasonal or change often (a common occurrence in many pastry shops), don’t ever expect to find everything. The one dessert they did have was a pure chocolate indulgence. There were so many flavors and textures in every bite that I barely noticed the strange noises Erez made while tasting it.
Pierre Herme (6th)
They boast the famous ispahan croissant and macarons, and you can boast that you’ve been to Pierre Herme – home of the dessert god.
Address: 72 Rue Bonaparte, 75006 Paris
Phone: +33 1 43 54 47 77
Sunday – Thursday, 10:00 am to 7:00 pm. Friday, 10:00 am to 7:30 pm. Saturday, 10:00 am to 8:00 pm.
If you’ve ever heard of one pastry shop or chef in Paris, it’s probably Pierre Herme. He’s known for his daring combinations of unique dessert flavors. His macarons in particular are considered to be among the best. Aside from Angelina and Laudree, it was one of the only places where there was a long line (although it, thankfully, went very fast).
One thing is for sure: you MUST try the ispahan croissant if you get the chance. You just have to! After hearing so much about it, and having such high expectations, I prepared myself for disappointment… but that didn’t happen! I can’t begin to describe how good this croissant really is. If I lived in Paris, I would make a point to eat it every day. Seriously – every single day.
I also tasted one of the most famous desserts in Paris – Kouigh Amann, a cake similar to puff pastry with a caramelized top. Needless to say, it was delicious.
Important notes: One of the stores – located in the Marais – only sells macarons and chocolates, no other pastries or desserts. It’s a different location than the one mentioned above.
Sadaharu Aoki (6th)
The perfect shop for those with a more daring sweet tooth.
Address: 35 Rue de Vaugirard, 75006 Paris
Phone: +33 1 45 44 48 90
Tuesday – Saturday, 11:00 am to 7:00 pm. Sunday, 10:00 am to 6:00 pm. Closed Mondays.
I’ve heard a few different reviews about this place. This Japanese-inspired shop is quite meticulous in their perfectly crafted desserts. Although I came in with a list of recommendations I’d found online, they didn’t have any of them the day I was there. Instead, the worker suggested that I try Bamboo, her personal favorite.
I hate to say this, but although Bamboo looked perfect, it tasted exactly the opposite. I could barely finish the first bite. To me, it tasted much more like sushi than an actual dessert. Other bloggers have mentioned that some of their desserts are overly sweet, and that they’re sometimes inconsistent in taste.
If you’re keen on going and want to taste some of the desserts recommended by others, try Éclair Sesame Noir, Tarte Caramel, or cream puffs.
Hugo & Victor (7th)
A dessert store fit for diamonds.
Address: 40 Boulevard Raspail, 75007 Paris
Phone: +33 1 44 39 97 73
Monday – Saturday, 9:00 am to 8:00 pm. Sunday, 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.
From across the street, Hugo & Victor looks like a jewelry store: every dessert is placed inside a display window to be shown off. The chocolates look like crystal balls and every pastry is a work of art.
Although taking pictures isn’t allowed, here’s a glance at one of the artesian pieces I bought. See how pretty and shiny?
The macarons were good, but not the best I’ve tasted. The Victor Parline dessert, choux puffs filled with a refreshing and genius praline butter, was perfect in flavor and texture.
La Patisserie des Reves (7th)
Marvelous desserts and modern décor.
Address: 93 Rue du Bac, 75007 Paris
Phone: +33 1 42 84 00 82
Tuesday – Saturday, 9:00 am to 8:00 pm. Sunday, 9:00 am to 6:00 pm. Closed Mondays.
I love how each pastry shop is so different from one another, which makes the experience of touring between them so much fun. At La Patisserie des Reves, the décor is cool and playful, and they take the time to wrap every dessert beautifully. Their saint-honore dessert (puff pastries again, but this time caramelized!) is recommended for a good reason – it is simply one of the best! The ‘chausson aux pommes’ (apple pastry) looked so tempting, but after tasting more than 10 desserts within 3 hours, I was about to pass out. I’ll leave it to you to try it and tell me what I missed!
Just because you have to.
Address: 75 Avenue des Champs-Élysées, 75008 Paris
Phone: +33 1 40 75 08 75
Sunday – Saturday, 10:00 am to 8:00 pm.
Another touristy location: 21 Rue Bonaparte, 75006 Paris
You can’t really miss Laduree; it’s located right in the middle of the famous Champs-Élysées. The line is long and tiring, but their macarons are some of the most famous in Paris. I’ve read tons of good reviews about the place and remembered from previous visits that it used to be one of my favorites, but I’m not sure what happened this time. I tasted 4 macarons and 2 pastries, but they were all just okay. Maybe I had tasted so many amazing sweets at that point that my palate became picky. With that being said, visiting this place is a must. The style, the décor, the colors, the ribbons and boxes – it’s pure magic. Be sure to try some of their macarons, too!
Pain de Sucre(3rd)
Address:14 Rue Rambuteau, 75003 Paris
Phone: +33 1 45 74 68 92
Thursday – Monday, 10:00 am to 8:00 pm. Closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
As mentioned in the beginning of the post, I didn’t get the opportunity to check out all of the places that were recommended to me. My list was just too ambitious, and as a result, I was unable to visit this shop.
Café Pouchkine (8th)
Address: 64 Boulevard Haussmann (inside ‘Printemps Mode’), 75008 Paris
Phone: +33 1 42 82 43 31
Monday – Saturday, 9:30 am to 8:00 pm. Closed Sundays.
Des Gâteaux et du Pain (15th)
Address: amazing croissants
63 Boulevard Pasteur, 75015 Paris
Phone: +33 1 45 38 94 29
Wednesday – Monday, 8:00 am to 8:00 pm. Closed Tuesdays.
A few last words:
In Paris, you’ll find good breads and pastries on almost every corner. There was a small, simple bakery near my hotel and everything I tasted there each morning was marvelous. So don’t feel bad if you miss out on some bakeries on this list!
During your trip, you may find that your palate starts to get picky after so many sweets. Some pastries that are supposed to be amazing suddenly aren’t, but that’s only because you will compare them to the world’s best desserts.
In every article about Paris bakeries, you’ll find different recommendations for desserts “you can’t miss” or “must try”. That can get confusing quickly, so just remember that no matter what you try, you won’t be disappointed. Trust me!
BTW if you think these bags are filled with clothes then think again… these are all pastries! My poor belly.