A block of streets in 11th arrondissement is well known for its gastronomical scene: Bistrot Paul Bert, the recent coffee place Amami, Cyril Lignac’s bakery of the same name and his bistro Le Chardenoux, all found at a distance of several hundreds of meters. And now, Cyril Lignac decided to strike again in the same area, just across the street from his bakery by opening La Chocolaterie.
The French have a special connection with chocolate. When you walk the streets of Paris you stumble upon numerous chocolate boutiques or chocolateries, selling chocolate in all forms and flavours. Paris is know as the chocolate capital, having the biggest number of chocolateries in the world. The French history with chocolate goes way back, to the courts of French kings where the chocolate was first introduced from Spain. Chocolateries opened around Paris but were restricted merely to the rich. Over time chocolate became more accessible to common folk and it soon became established as people’s favourite treat. Chocolate artisans pushed the fabrication of chocolate to a form of art. Today in particular, Paris counts for numerous boutiques ranging from small artisans to luxury brands displaying true masterpieces made of chocolate.
So you might ask, amongst all the more or less luxury chocolateries offering high quality creations, what makes La Chocolaterie so special? La Chocolaterie has nothing to do with the conventional tea salons or chocolate bars. This is a place for easy going gatherings of friends and families around a cup of hot chocolate and a favourite pastry at a big wooden central table and the bistro style chairs and round side tables. The colours are modern and decadent: blue and copper, metal and wood, with perfectly assimilated neon sign above the counter displaying the name: Chocolaterie.
Lignac, in duet with his pastry chef Benoit Couvrand offers diverse chocolate pleasures. Behind the glass counter everything is tempting: chocolate filled viennoiseries, chocolate tonka brioche, caramel and chocolate cookies and eclairs. Under the glass bell a round cherry chocolate cake stands in all its splendour. The traditional chocolate tart shines invitingly with its layer of chocolate pearls. Lignac’s presentation is modern, but the products at La Chocolaterie evoke nostalgia. It is here you can enjoy le quatre heure, an oblong brioche bread, cut as a sandwich and filled with a slice of crispy chocolate bar, an afternoon treat so popular in the days we were children. The hot chocolate is comforting, with strong biscuit notes.
Three different types of chocolate tablets attract with their perfect packaging: classic, inclusions and bonbons. The latest are already cut in squares as little chocolate candy only waiting to be put in the mouth to savour their rich texture and flavour. The humorous signature adorns all the products as well as it decorates the central wooden table : gourmand croquant. We should not forget the chocolate bars so strongly resembling the old Mars or Bounty but infinitely better, created à la française, with high quality ingredients and lots of love for chocolate in Lignac’s Parisian laboratory. La Chocolaterie is the place we were missing in the chocolate capital. Now we can really say that in Paris we have it all. Merci Chef.
25 rue de Chanzy