I took a tour with Context Travel for a foodie tour of the Maris. The last stop was the pastry and chocolate shop of Jacques Genin, a self taught chef. When we arrived someone was taking professional photos of him in the middle of his shop and later interviewed him at a table in the tea room section. The shop is in an old building which has been modernized. It is on three levels with wooden floors, display cases and many tall vases of flowers. The vases were about four feet high filled with green and white flowers. I took some quick photos because I wasn't sure what their policy was about taking photos. Many shops of various kinds are very firm about not letting you take photos.
The photos just below are of a Saint Honore pastry which tied for my favorite with the Fraisier I posted about earlier. He also has the best caramels I've tasted in my life. They are 110 Euros per kilo. I also bought a box of chocolates to bring home which were beautifully contained in a slim metal box. I had such a good time picking them. I had a brief conversation with Jacques through his employee since he only speaks French and I barely speak any. What a fun time!
The photos below are from the tour. The first one is of the leader on the left and the others were participants. We went to the new Popelini shop where they make small cream puffs which are filled and topped with fondant. I didn't care for them but thought the decor of the shop was great since they used their own packaging. Small single boxes were indented into one wall. Very clean and simple decorations. Too bad the sweets aren't better.
We stopped at a bakery where Barbara Austin showed us the difference between the usual baguette and the traditional one. We had goat cheese from a fromagerie. We also stopped at a 200 year old spice store. At each stop we could buy whatever we wanted.
It was nice to be on a tour with English speaking people and to not keep track of where I was on the map and just follow and listen to an informed guide.
Just yesterday my favorite foodie blog posted about Jacques Genin at Paris Patisseries. Go take a look because he has wonderful photos of the chocolates. This didn't want to load so you may have to copy and paste.