It seems to me like the whole world and its brother, considers Ladurée the Mecca of fine macarons. I personally know several people whose only request to friends visiting Paris, is to bring back a box of Ladurée goodies.
So off I went to Ladurée on our first trip a few years ago, with the greatest expectation of tasting my first ever sandwich macarons. I walked out bewildered by all the hype! There might be a sacrilegious trip report floating out there somewhere, where I swore off macarons forever. (Confident in the knowledge that at the time, there were none to be had at home in any case, apart from the cardamom flavoured, cashew meringue rocks from Mangalore, that we call macaroons.)
Fast forward to this past summer, when I tracked down Georges Larnicol based on an online lead, and I had to eat my words. Not even Pierre Herme’s macarons came close (that’s double blashphemy!!) to Georges’ fabulous, feather light, pastel discs, encasing the most tantalising fillings you can think of!
Georges is a chocolatier, better known for his Kouignettes – his version of the flaky, syrup soaked Breton butter cake, Kouign Amann – that were too sweet and sticky for my liking. His confectionery however is mind blowing! And his artistic skill evident in the row upon row of sculpted chocolate figures. But for me his macarons, with their sherbet hues and delicate flavours, were the highlight, making this Marais chocolaterie a mandatory daily stop.
Georges Larnicol Boutiques in Paris:
Marais: 14 rue de Rivoli, 75004
(Monday-Saturday, 9am-6pm; closed Sunday)
Saint Germaine: 132 boulevard Saint-Germain, 75006
(Hours: Every day, 9am-11pm)