Eric versus Paul

There is no doubt that Paris (and maybe France in general) is known for the best breads and baked goods in the world. Their love of butter and the utmost care they take in creating classic edibles like croissants and kouign ammans is unparalleled (with the Japanese coming in a close second, but that is for another blog entry.)

Until La Boulange (and Starbucks ensuing purchase of them so they could usurp their line of baked goods), I had not really found a croissant that I came close to enjoying in the U.S., so I was on the hunt to make sure I got my fill during my sojourn in Paris. Although they may not represent the best of what France has to offer (being large chains that cross the borders into other countries and continents), both Eric Kayser and Boulangerie Paul were readily accessible with several locations all around the city including one branch of each a mere stones throw from where we were staying.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Quiche Lorraine

I tried a quiche lorraine, croissant and chausson pomme from Eric Kayser and a baguette and croissant from Boulangerie Paul.  Everything from both places were delicious. Absolutely incomparable to anything I have found in the U.S.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Croissants

As far as the croissants, the two were almost indistinguishable but if forced, I might give a slight edge to Boulangerie Paul because it was a teeny tad bit flakier.  Something I learned is that you should only buy straight croissants.  Supposedly, any croissants that are rounded at the ends don’t use 100% real butter and more likely to be machine made.  I’m not sure I see the correlation with butter and shape, but I never found a curvy shaped croissant in any bakery in Paris.

The chausson pomme and quiche from Eric Kayser were good.  In particular, the quiche lorraine was notably different because it was egg-ier than I’ve ever tasted.  The lightness of the quiche filling was almost reminiscent of a flan and the ham was salty and smoky.  I liked the chausson pomme’s flakiness and the apple filling was perfectly sweet.  One of my main critiques with American apple filling is it can be too sweet or if not, it is slightly tangy with a more overwhelming cinnamon flavor.  The French take a more refined, subtle approach to their apple filling which I find more palatable not that I dislike American apple pastries.  It’s just a pleasant difference.

So overall, both Eric Kayser and Boulangerie Paul are pretty much on par with one another.  I can’t profess to say that their breads, viennoiserie and other edibles are the best Paris has to offer, but I wasn’t really focused on trying to find the best.  I am definitely one who enjoys the search for good food, but with limited time and so much to eat, I figured that the average croissant in Paris was going to be amazing compared to anything I would get back home…. and it assuredly was.

Eric Kayser
18 Rue du Bac
75007 Paris
France
(Several other locations in Paris)

PAFO Ratings for Eric Kayser:
Price $
Ambiance 3 stars
Food 4½ stars
Overall rating 4½ stars

Boulangerie Paul
77 Rue de Seine
75006 Paris
France
(Several other locations in Paris)

PAFO Ratings for Boulangerie Paul:
Price $
Ambiance 3 stars
Food 4½ stars
Overall rating 4½ stars

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s