Two New Zealand Bakeries Worth Traveling For

At the Baker's Coffee Shop the daily specials are written on craft paper.
At the Baker’s Coffee Shop the daily specials are written on kraft paper.

Before I went to New Zealand, I picked the brains of friends who had visited before and they all said it was incredible, truly one of their favorite places on earth, but there was a catch. “Don’t expect too much of the food,” was something I heard over and over again. So I went without high culinary expectations, and maybe that was a good thing, because when I got there I was very pleasantly surprised by what I found. Continue reading “Two New Zealand Bakeries Worth Traveling For”

Coffee Alfresco in Paris

Honor Coffee Bar is located next to Comme des Garcons.
Honor Coffee Bar is located next to Comme des Garcons.

Tucked in a courtyard off fashionable Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré lies a welcome addition to Paris’s thriving coffee scene. Honor is an outdoor coffee bar owned by Angelle Boucher and Daniel Warburton. The couple, she’s English, he’s Australian, are serious about coffee and both have years of experience in the specialty coffee industry. Boucher was a barista at the Espresso Room in London and Warburton worked at Climpson & Sons Roastery. Continue reading “Coffee Alfresco in Paris”

Bob’s Bake Shop

Bob's Bakeshop
Bob’s Bake Shop is located in a former SNCF warehouse.

Anybody who thinks there is no good healthy food in Paris hasn’t been to Marc Grossman’s Bob’s Juice Bar and Bob’s Kitchen, which serve amazing rice and veggie bowls, soups, salads and cold-pressed juices– his green juice concoction of kale, spirulina, apple, ginger, lemon and a bunch of other herbs is delicious. When I heard he was opening a bakery in the mixed use Halles-Pajol building, I had to check it out. Fare is a tad more indulgent– housemade bagels and American style baked goods, but a delicious taste of home. Check out my story on the Hip Paris Blog.

Paris’ Best Bread

Pain Batlique, one of the delicious breads at Liberté near Canal Saint Martin.
Pain Baltique, one of the delicious breads at Liberté near Canal Saint Martin.
I think Paris is the best bread city in the world. I can’t tell you how many times I stop dead in my tracks when I smell the intoxicating scent of fresh bread baking and inevitably follow my nose to another gorgeous boulangerie. Baguettes are by far the biggest sellers- the French buy about 10 million baguettes a year. However, I almost never buy them because there are so many other delicious breads to try. Read my story about Paris’ best breads (that aren’t baguettes) on BonAppetit.com.

The Cinnamon Roll at Café Suédois

The Kanelbullar at Café Suédois.
The Kanelbullar at Café Suédois.

I live in the Marais. Not in the 3rd or Upper Marais but in the heart of the 4th right next to the old Jewish Quarter. If you don’t know Paris well, that’s an area associated with shopping and large crowds on weekends. While I love the hustle and bustle, sometimes you want to escape the throngs of people lining up for falafels on Rue des Rosiers and window shopping on Rue Vielle du Temple’s narrow sidewalks. Continue reading “The Cinnamon Roll at Café Suédois”

The Croissant aux Noix at Ladurée

 

The first Ladurée opened in 1862.
The first Ladurée opened in 1862.

Spring has officially arrived in Paris and perhaps no bakery in the city epitomizes the season more than Ladurée with its mint green awnings, and piles of pretty pastel colored macarons in flavors like, pistachio, rose petal, and lemon verbena. Credited with starting the version popular today (two shells joined with a ganache filling) in the early 20th century most people go to Ladurée for the macarons, but I go for something else entirely– the Croissant aux Noix or croissant with nuts. Continue reading “The Croissant aux Noix at Ladurée”

The Rhubarb Tart at Zum See

The meringue topped rhubarb tart at Zum See.
The meringue topped rhubarb tart at Zum See.

We’ve just returned from a week of skiing in the Alps and the highlight, in addition to the incredible scenery, was the food. Unlike in the US, mountain restaurants are individually owned and operated and in Zermatt in particular the little restaurants in historic farmhouses and barns are incredible. No chili fries and burritos here, think more roasted lamb, Dover sole with asparagus and Michelin star worthy burgers. Continue reading “The Rhubarb Tart at Zum See”

L’Escargot at Du Pain et Des Idées

 

Rum raisin L'Escargot at Du Pain et Des Idées.
Raisin and cream filled L’Escargot at Du Pain et Des Idées.

There is another type of escargot in France, and while I have no trouble eating snails, many may find the other version, a delicious and decadent pastry made by many of the city’s best boulangeries, a bit more palatable. Continue reading “L’Escargot at Du Pain et Des Idées”

Chocolate Bread at Liberté

Chocolate bread and other pastries at Liberté.
Chocolate bread and other pastries at Liberté.

I must admit, I didn’t always understand chocolate bread. When I would see it in bakeries in the US, nestled next to savory rosemary olive loaves and breakfast sweets like cinnamon rolls and croissants it seemed like a bland choice, almost like a treat for someone who doesn’t have much of a sweet tooth. When my dad told me he had developed a thing for chocolate bread the last time he was in Paris, it dawned on me–maybe I would really like it too. What if I had been missing out on the most amazing pastry in the case all these years? I resolved to do some research and try it out when I got to Paris. Continue reading “Chocolate Bread at Liberté”

Eclairs at L’Eclair de Genie

The pastry case at L'Eclair de Genie is a bit like a jewel box.
The jewel box like pastry case at L’Eclair de Genie.

Seeing as it was my birthday yesterday, I decided to treat myself to an eclair (okay two) from L’Eclair de Genie, a creative eclair shop in the Marais that happens to be dangerously close to my apartment. Eclairs are giving macarons a run for their money as the city’s treat of choice. Shops selling the small confections in an array of unique flavors are popping up around town. At L’Eclair de Genie offerings include raspberry passionfruit, salted caramel and pistachio orange. Topped with jewel toned glazes and gold leaf, they’re as pretty as they are tasty. Continue reading “Eclairs at L’Eclair de Genie”