Notices

"It's not as good as in Paris . . ."

Old Aug 6th, 2004, 12:28 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 12,188
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
"It's not as good as in Paris . . ."

Does anyone find baked goods at home that are as good as you get in Paris?

Since my son and I returned from our trip, I have been trying to locate croissants, tartelettes, and yogurt that he will like as much as the ones he had every day when in Paris. I thought this should be easy as I live in a city with a zillion bakeries and restaurants with a huge ethnic variety.

Keep in mind my son is one to notice very small differences in food, and has been like that since infancy.

Croissants - I may have finally achieved this after several false starts. They are twice as expensive as in Paris and from a ritzy shop, but he says they are just about as good. However, my husband buys the 8 for $4.99 (Canadian) kind at Safeway, and so those will just have to do for everyday use (as opposed to a special treat) until he decides to pay for his own croissants.

Tartelettes - The ones he had in Paris were laden with fruit and quite substantial. Most here are anemic in comparison. And they just do not taste as good, according to him. Furthermore, he is terribly annoyed whenever a tartelette is ruined (according to him) by having a thin layer of chocolate at the bottom, which he said never happened in Paris.

Yogurt - have not found anything comparable. He liked the blackberry, raspberry and blueberry type that came in glass jars. I have an idea where to look next, but again it won't be cheap.

He asked me today whether he can expect baked goods of similar quality everywhere in France, or if such things are only available in Paris.
WillTravel is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 12:34 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 3,961
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I live in Pompano Beach (just north of Ft. Lauderdale) and am lucky enough to have a genuine Frenchman own a bakery nearby which is named Croissant 'licious. My son, who lived several months in Paris, says the croissants there are as good as Paris croissants. But Paris doesn't have a stranglehold on great croissants and pastries. You can find wonderful bakeries all over France. Enjoy.
JulieVikmanis is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 12:36 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,092
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Yes, I found a little bakery store in a shopping centre, called Eli Waters, which is in Hervey Bay, Queensland. The lady who runs is french, and quite often you can hear here talking in the french language, to friends who often drop in for coffee and croissants.
Although my french is very limited, this lady "encourages" me to speak more & more french to her, each time I call in to collect some yummy cakes, tarts, etc.
tropo is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 12:45 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 580
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have long had the same complaint about the tartelettes being lined with chocolate in the U.S. There are a few people who don't like chocolate, believe it or not! Last summer we had our breakfasts at the Mercure Hotel in Beaulieu sur Mer. On a few mornings, I didn't ask why, they would put out the yogurt in the glass jars instead of the brand in plastic containers. It was delicious, peach, as I recall. Your son has good taste!
daph is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 12:46 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 8,862
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I really like Yoplait yogurt -- but I don't know how this compares with Paris yogurt, which I've not really had.

111op is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 12:48 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 21,745
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Sccramento is lucky enough to have Ettore's European Bakery and Restaurant. The bakery makes French-style croissants (real butter, not margarine blend, which is what results in the greasy ones most supermarkets turn out) and the only bearclaws my husband finds acceptable.

San Francisco has a number of French bakeries that make proper croissants. The sister of one of the bakers used to bring croissants and other goodies up to our local farmers' market, but she no longer does, unfortunately. They were terrific.

If you can find the Sara Lee frozen croissants, give them a try--pretty good.
Underhill is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 12:52 PM
  #7  
yk
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 24,415
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
WillTravel-

Funny you brought this up. I was in Paris last Sept, and my friends went there last Dec. During that time, a french Patisserie called "Miel" opened in Philadelphia, just a few blocks from where I was living. "Miel" is opened by Chef Robert Bennett, who was previously the pastry chef at Le Bec Fin in Philadelphia (a Mobil 5* restaurant).

Anyhow, we were all excited to go and get some croissants. And what a disappointment it was! Not only they were expensive (~$2/croissant, vs € 0,60 in Paris), we also found them too "dense" - unlike the Parisian ones which are light & fluffy.
yk is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 01:10 PM
  #8  
rex
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,194
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
No doubt many of you have an "other-worldly" experience with a croissant somewhere in France, most likely in a petite auberge, where the croissant arrived in front of you, no more than 2 minutes and 50 yards from the oven. I first recounted this 11 year old memory here nearly three years ago - - http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...=2&tid=1337555

For me, it was at http://www.queyras.org/lequipe (warning: website has music when you first open it) - - I don't doubt that there are places to get an equally good croissant elsewhere - - but a croissant like that is an ephemeral experience. And probably cannot be duplicated from any retail bakery, anywhere.

Bonne reverie... and...

Best wishes,

Rex
rex is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 01:40 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 6,117
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
La Patisserie in Seattle is fun, but then I've never tasted in Paris.
hopingtotravel is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 01:59 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,431
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hi,
I did not eat the yogurt in Paris, but try and see if you can buy Total Greek yogurt. It comes regular and 2 percent. I put my own fruit in it, or drizzle on some honey. It is wonderful. If you live in NYC there is a fabulous Hungarian bakery across the street from St. John's cathedral on the upper west side. It has the best croissants and brioche in the USA. Plus great hot chocolate that is very dark and bitter. It comes with whipped cream that you add to sweeten the chocolate. The coffee is also great. When ever we go to NYC, it is a must to do.
yipper is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 02:25 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 2,399
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have never found anything here (Canada) like the yoghurt in France. Nothing we can buy in a grocery store comes close. Yoplait etc. taste totally inedible to me after being spoiled by the French stuff!
Greek yoghurt, or "Balkan Style" is very good (esp. with honey drizzled on it) but not like French yoghurt. The consistency is different - not as silky.

WillTravel - I have a trick that improves the grocery store croissants. Just put them on a cookie tray and heat in a warm overn until the outsides get crispy. Then serve 'em warm.... not too bad!
taggie is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 04:47 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 9,198
Likes: 0
Received 18 Likes on 1 Post
"Does anyone find baked goods at home that are as good as you get in Paris?"

Yes. But it is not the same as eating it in Paris.

maitaitom is online now  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 05:20 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 3,605
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
yk, tell your friends to go to Le Petite Mitron in Narberth (accross from the train station). Incredible. The chef and his wife are French, import their water from France (who knew) and they make delicious chocolat. croissant, tarts, etc. We moved to Ct. two years ago but we still make a special trip there when we visit friends in Philly.

WillTravel, I'm not sure if your son is interested in cooking but perhaps you could get him a cookbook so he can try his hand at recreating some of those great tarts.
mvor is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 05:34 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 373
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I share your son's concern(s).
This spring I resorted to making my own croissants from scratch. They tasted authentic, lasted about 10 days in the bread box, and one batch makes enough croissants to give to friends to share your new success.

There is a market near where I live (San Francisco Bay area) that sells a Swiss branded yogurt. It's extravagant - about $3.00 for a small container - but great as a special treat.
usbeauty is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 05:43 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,121
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
WillTravel, congratulations on having a child who appreciates good food. Unfortunately, in many years of croissant eating, I've never found any as good as those in France (and not only Paris, your son will be glad to learn). I suspect it's the different kinds of ingredients, i.e. French flour may be milled differently, butter is higher fat than American butter, etc. All the more reason to go back.

Yipper, I'm with you on the Total Greek yogurt. The full fat stuff is absolutely the best I've ever had outside of Greece and I've become addicted. Some of this stuff with fresh blueberries in the morning is what's getting me through the summer.
shellio is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 08:09 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,283
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
OK, I'm just AMAZED at all this "croissant chat"....is no one else in the country embroilled in the Atkins craze?

Melodie
wlzmatilida is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 08:14 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 373
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I am embroiled in the croissant craze.
usbeauty is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 10:06 PM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,107
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
yipper, can you recall the name of the Hungarian bakery in NY? It sounds divine. Thanks!
Marilyn is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 10:13 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,127
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
So, the Bay Area has quite a few authentic patissieries. But I'm still saving room in the carryon for a box of Laduree pastries.
francophile03 is offline  
Old Aug 6th, 2004, 10:23 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 373
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hungarian Pastry Shop near Columbia?
usbeauty is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO