The idea of Parisian Bread and Pastry is obvious, but these are exceptional and historical. Important for their history and longevity, these Bread and Pastry places, that one must visit, also have invented their special iconic pastry, loaf or decor.
Nicolas Stohrer, as the story goes, learned his trade as pastry chef in the kitchens of King Stanislas I of Poland who was in exile in the East of France. When the King’s daughter, Marie Leszczynska, married King Louis XV of France, she brought her favorite pâtissier with her to Versailles. Five years later, in 1730, Stohrer opened his own Parisian Bread and Pastry shop on rue Montorgueil where it still is today. The creations at Stohrer are classic, reflecting centuries of French tradition. One of its most celebrated is the Puit d’Amour, or Well of Love, where a base of puff pastry gets topped with bourbon vanilla pastry cream and caramel glaze. “It’s very creamy, very old-fashioned, and very French,” says London-based French chef Pascal Aussignac. Another pastry attributed to Stohrer is the Baba au rhum.
51 Rue Montorgueil 75002 stohrer.fr
This historic shop opened in 1932 with traditional country breads. Poilâne is renowned for its large round signature loaf called a miche. It is dense, chewy and has a particular flavor due to the long “levain” fermentation process. Order in advance and they will decorate and personalize the loaf for a special occasion such as a wedding. At just 32€ this is a unique, symbolic and inexpensive gift. They also make the simplest apple tart and buttery (swoon) sablé cookies called punitions (punishments!). This is perhaps the one Parisian Bread and Pastry shop where you can get fabulous creations that won’t make you fat!
8 rue du Cherche-Midi 75006 and several others poilane.com
The Musée Jacquemart André
The Musée Jacquemart André has a lovely indoor/outdoor salon de thé where you can have lunch of quiche and salad or lovely pastries from the best pastry chefs in Paris : the historic Pâtisserie Stohrer and Michel Fenet’s Petite Marquise. They serve brunch on Sundays too. The café is housed in the mansion’s former dining room and they call it the “most beautiful tea room in Paris”. We concur. Open 365 days a year!
158 bd Haussamnn 75008 www.musee.jacquemart.andre.com
Since 1921, three generations have gone by and the famous dessert called l’île flottante is still sought after. The “Floating Island” composed of exquisitely light meringue floating on crème anglaise (how ironic) has made the Senoble reputation. In 2017 Agathe Senoble, great-grandaughter opened a new chapter in the family history by opening the first Parisian Bread and Pastry shop of the Senoble brand. Agathe also updated the family recipe making it less sugary.
11 rue des Petits Champs 75001 – www.senoble.com
The history of Méert began in 1761, when the Sieur Delcourt set up a candy and chocolate business in Lille. Later Modo de Rollez established his ice cream shop and at the end of the 18th century a pastry shop. The address 27, rue Esquermoise has been sweet for more than 400 years! The elegant decor of incredible Pompeian and orientalist flamboyant style that you’ll find in Lille and Paris dates from the time of Modo de Rollez.
The Belgian Michael Paulus Gislinus Méert took over the business in 1849. He had just spent five years at the Colonies visiting plantations of cocoa, sugar cane, vanilla and coffee. He was already known as one of the greatest confectioners in Europe when he developed the fabulous waffle filled with vanilla. Over the years many artists, writers, heads of state, royalty and famous personalities, from General de Gaulle to Marguerite Yourcenar, have enjoyed the incomparable flavor and mellowness of the Méert waffle!
You can find their chocolates at 16 rue Elzévir 75003 and 3 rue Jacques Callot 75006. The waffles are at La Grande Épicerie 38 rue de Sèvres 75007.
The history of Parisian tea rooms is intimately tied to the history of the Ladurée family. It all began in 1862, when Louis Ernest Ladurée, a man from France’s southwest, created a bakery in Paris at 16 rue Royale. To real the whole story see our article about this family in French Entrepreneur Families.
While not at the historic location the current Ladurée flagship at 75, avenue des Champs-Elysées keeps with the original refined, authentic image of the tea room on the rue Royale chubby cherubs included.
Patisserie Durand in Maisons-Laffitte was established in 1909. They serve both Bread and Pastry, but are the inventor of the iconic pastry the Paris Brest. A wheel shaped delight named for the bicycle race. Read the story https://www.fusac.fr/why-is-it-called-pastries-and-desserts/