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Margaret Pilgrim

Macarons in Paris [MERGED TOPIC]

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This article by Dominique Ageorges on macaroons appeared sometime (they don’t date them on the website) in Expatica for what it’s worth. It really doesn't rate them or judge the differences but does say they're the biggest sellers that Lenôtre, Pierre Hermé and Ladurée have. I came across it searching for food news for August.


John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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Last week I had the joy of being in both Paris and Quimper.

I bought macarons from the famous macaron place in Quimper, Laduree, Pierre Herme, Fauchon and Hevin.

In the past I have purchased macarons from La Maison du Chocolat, Foucher, Fauchon and Le Notre.

I found that I still preferred the Laduree ones to any of the others. I found the fruit to be true, I am not a big fan of Herme's bizarre flavor combinations. The truffle ones were strange and could have been had for breakfast.

In December, taller half and I will pick only two flavors to try --framboise and pistache and maybe chocolat and maybe citron :) and do an intensive study of the top 8 macaronniers.

Note to self, these do not travel well without the use of a tupperware bacon box.

lalala


I have a relatively uninteresting life unless you like travel and food. Read more about it here.

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Ouf, the macaron wars.

Well suffice it to say that macaron are so overwhelmingly bad for you that the whole lot should be shipped out to sea and sunk. Eat one and you're sure to gain a pound on your waist and clog up at least a few hundred capillaries. They truly are the French equivalent of the American hamburger and of course just as good.

LeNotre is better than Fauchon, that's all I know -- really I just stay far away from them. The mini macaron are worth a mention because one has the illusion that they are better for you, like a low tar cigarette.

And the macaron fanatics are just insufferable people, I really suggest you just invite someone else to dinner and forget they even exist. lol


Edited by Ocean_islands (log)

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Fresh_a - thanks for the Pierre Herme article - interesting to also see he's opening a new store in October.

Is there a website for Herme?

LOVE the reports!


2317/5000

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Hello again

Pierre Herme just opened a new shop in the 15th arrondissement and I went to the opening the other night. 185 rue Vaugirard. It's very pink inside. I took some pictures with my digital camera but being a technical hick haven't quite worked out how to down load on computer or attach to postings here. However as soon as I do will post some pics.

The PR is sending me a press pack so if I glean any extra info of interest will also post that. I did ask the PR whether they ever had any intentions of opening a tea room but it sounded like it would be too expensive an experiment for them for the time being. Shame, since I think that way they would really cement their status as contenders to Laduree. Laduree has the Holder Group behind it (a family company which owns the Paul bakery chain) so therefore has more money to open stores/tea rooms.

Anyway, the opening was full of Parisians dressed in black trying to be trendy and not really talking to eachother. All the macarons were in perspex boxes behind the counter. I figured what's the point in attending the opening of the shop of a master of macarons without sampling the fabled macarons? So I asked one of the many staff who were hanging about not doing very much whether this might be possible. He had to disappear behind the door covered with a giant portrait of a very menacing looking Mr Herme for permission. A few moments later he re-emerged granting my request. Which one would I like to try? I went for the Macha green tea one. An eleborate process of opening the perspex macaron box ensued. Actually a bit disappointing and not memorable at all - sort of just tasted of sugar. Other flavours of his can be brilliant. Anyway my small act of rebellion in the face of conformity created something of a revolution. All of a sudden everyone was asking to try the macarons. I think they'd been waiting all evening for someone to pluck up the nerve... (Why do I always feel like the annoying pupil in class who is the first to ask the obvious question that no-one dares ask but everyone wants to know the answer to? Perhaps that's a question for another forum.)

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Hello again

Pierre Herme just opened a new shop in the 15th arrondissement and I went to the opening the other night.  185 rue Vaugirard.

It's been open for ages now.


Anti-alcoholics are unfortunates in the grip of water, that terrible poison, so corrosive that out of all substances it has been chosen for washing and scouring, and a drop of water added to a clear liquid like Absinthe, muddles it." ALFRED JARRY

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In the February Paris Notes available on line only by subscribing at http://www.parisnotes.com/ Roger Grody wrote a piece entitled "The Mighty Macaron: A common pastry has been transformed into Paris’ sexiest sweet," and to avoid copyright issues, I'll not but summarize the places he mentions and for which types of macarons:

Laduree: "most prominent and prolific purveyor"

Lenotre: the "square macaron"

Gerard Mulot: chocolate ones

La Maison du Chocolat: ditto

Paul Hevin: "

La Fontaine au Chocolat: "

Pierre Herme: "biggest stir" for ingredients such as truffles to ketchup

Sadaharu Aoki: "eastern flavors."


John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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I'd like someone to bring me back a dozen Herme's mixed selection. How much should I expect to pay?


Sharing food with another human being is an intimate act that should not be indulged in lightly....MFK Fisher

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Has anyone else noticed a drastic downturn in the Herme macarons?

Bought one of each for the wife from Paris. Where they are usually light, crisp, and creamy, these were heavy, with stodgy centres, and over-thick crusts. I shan't be returning there in a hurry.


"Gimme a pig's foot, and a bottle of beer..." Bessie Smith

Flickr Food

"111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321" Bruce Frigard 'Winesonoma' - RIP

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Has anyone else noticed a drastic downturn in the Herme macarons?

Bought one of each for the wife from Paris. Where they are usually light, crisp, and creamy, these were heavy, with stodgy centres, and over-thick crusts. I shan't be returning there in a hurry.

Thats OK moby...

Next time you bring them back just pass them over to me and I'll make very sure you don't have to face eating them :raz::raz::raz:

J


More Cookbooks than Sense - my new Cookbook blog!

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Has anyone else noticed a drastic downturn in the Herme macarons?

Bought one of each for the wife from Paris. Where they are usually light, crisp, and creamy, these were heavy, with stodgy centres, and over-thick crusts. I shan't be returning there in a hurry.

Isn't that how they were right from the start? I bought an assortment of them soon after the opening of the first Paris shop. We weren't able to finish them: overgreasy, cloyingly sugary and the flavor combinations not always pleasant.

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The banana, avocado, chocolate and chile ones were fantastic, imo.

And generally speaking, ther were far superior to the last lot I had.

Jon - they're all yours!


"Gimme a pig's foot, and a bottle of beer..." Bessie Smith

Flickr Food

"111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321" Bruce Frigard 'Winesonoma' - RIP

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I had a caramel au buerre salé macaron rather some time ago and it was a paragon.


Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

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I had a caramel au buerre salé macaron rather some time ago and it was a paragon.

If you remember, can you describe this a little more?

Was it a 'plain' flavored macaron cookie with a salted caramel filling?

Is the filling just caramel or is it blended with softened butter to make a caramel buttercream?

Was there a little salt sprinkled on top?

I've been making other macarons at home and would like to try and emulate this particular flavor. Sounds like it would be a taste paragon for me as well!


Edited by ludja (log)

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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I had a caramel au buerre salé macaron rather some time ago and it was a paragon.

If you remember, can you describe this a little more?

As I recall it was a caramel colored macaron, with caramel colored filling. I believe the caramel flavor was in both the "cookie" and the butter cream. I suspect the butter cream filling was more intensely flavored. There were no salt crystals in evidence. The salt is in the batter or the buttercream. It was not a salty macaron, but it had the tang of those Breton caramels made with salted butter.


Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

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Thanks for the extra info.


"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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What I want to know is, is there really a macaron war raging in Paris? 

Well, I'm not sure it's the end of the war but today's Figaro reported that Jean-Paul Hevin got the prize for best macaron in Paris.


John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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What I want to know is, is there really a macaron war raging in Paris? 

Well, I'm not sure it's the end of the war but today's Figaro reported that Jean-Paul Hevin got the prize for best macaron in Paris.

Stunning.

I guess originality in flavors is not being rewarded by Le Figaro. I love Hevin but for chocolates only, to my recollection the only macarons he had were well...quite chocolate oriented (maybe i wasn't looking carefully enough???). La Duree and Herme might impress the world each season with bold new flavor combinations, yet the good old chocolate macaron prevails...


"A chicken is just an egg's way of making another egg." Samuel Butler

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Macarons war  :huh:

I wrote a little piece about this on my blog.

A tale of two Ispahans

Pim, I read your piece when you posted it on your blog (love it!) and all I can say is that the Isphahan sounded like an ice cream sandwich epiphany. Too bad I won't be in Paris until December.



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Stunning.

I guess originality in flavors is not being rewarded by Le Figaro. I love Hevin but for chocolates only, to my recollection the only macarons he had were well...quite chocolate oriented (maybe i wasn't looking carefully enough???). La Duree and Herme might impress the world each season with bold new flavor combinations, yet the good old chocolate macaron prevails...

I had a chocolate macaron from Hevin. It was stunning. While some of Hermé's macarons are also stunning, they are so in a way that's more than a macaron and consequently, less than a macaron. That said, a salt butter macaron was also exceptional, but somehow that chocolate macaron was the epitome of macaron.


Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

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What I want to know is, is there really a macaron war raging in Paris? 

Well, I'm not sure it's the end of the war but today's Figaro reported that Jean-Paul Hevin got the prize for best macaron in Paris.

Stunning. I guess originality in flavors is not being rewarded by Le Figaro.

I just want to correct the impression I may have given that this was an award given by Le Figaro. It was reported in their equivalent of the NYTimes "bold names" in the print version, source not given (I tried to find out the source, unsucessfully). To my knowledge, except for the great pizza test-off several years ago, Le Figaro has not been known to do best-of type ratings (hearts, numbers, Dossiers, yes).

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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Stunning. I guess originality in flavors is not being rewarded by Le Figaro.

I just want to correct the impression I may have given that this was an award given by Le Figaro. It was reported in their equivalent of the NYTimes "bold names" in the print version, source not given (I tried to find out the source, unsucessfully). To my knowledge, except for the great pizza test-off several years ago, Le Figaro has not been known to do best-of type ratings (hearts, numbers, Dossiers, yes).

My missunderstanding, thanks for the correction John.

In light of what was said earlier I will shame myself by admitting that despite quite a few visits to Hevin, it never occurred to me to buy his chocolate macarons. Will certainly do next time, whenever next time is...


"A chicken is just an egg's way of making another egg." Samuel Butler

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A Jean-Paul Hevin chocolate macaron - he has several - won first-place in the "Classic" category in Le Meilleur Macaron de Paris/The Best Macaroon in Paris contest held last Wednesday, June 1st. He also gave a macaron making lesson at L'atelier des Chefs yesterday afternoon - a hip cooking school here for home cooks - normally taught by young classically trained pro cooks.

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The Macaroons of yamazaki in Chaussée de la muette are really delicious.

I remember having tasted there macaroons with saffron.


Philippe raynaud

Les d�lices du Net

Les D�lices de Daubenton-Paris

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Based on my taste test from last week :rolleyes: I rank them:

1. Pierre Herme :wub:

2. Laduree

3. Lenôtre

4. Fauchon

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