Jacques Genin (Paris, France)
If you ask me what are my favorite pâtisseries in Paris prior to this recent trip, it’s either Pierre Hermé Paris (primarily for ispahan flavored anything and everything) or Jacques Genin for exquisite caramels and the best cakes and millefeuille that come from his kitchen upstairs of his upscale, sleek and modern Rue de Turenne location. (You may read my love for Genin when I was there the first time around here.)
The newest addition (to me, at least) are the small counter of fresh made pâte de fruits. The flavors run the gamut of classic fruits like apricot, strawberry, and cassis that are perfectly done that you can taste the respective fruits at its peak of ripeness and intensity of flavor and the texture is just perfect that you barely need to chew. The other flavors skew the less traditional like kiwi and pineapple (both excellent, too) and the unheard of flavors — wait for it — vegetables(!). When my travel companion (who was new to this brand) and I were informed of this, we were stunned and excited by the adventurous aspect of having vegetables in jellies. The three flavors that are available are rhubarb, red bell pepper, and beets. These were simply amazing and unexpected to actually walk the fine line of sweet and savory, especially the red bell pepper.
We also had the sublime chocolates and flavors range from traditional pralines (which were excellent) to slightly herbaceous or fruit forward (very interesting and equally good). The most unique was the tonka bean blended with milk chocolate and the hazelnut praline infused with rosemary with milk chocolate.
If you have the time to sit down and take in the pleasures and understand the genius of Jacques Genin’s pastries at his café toward the back of the boutique, it’s highly recommended. The hot chocolate here is arguably best in Paris — intense dark chocolate, velvety rich that a small amount can be more than enough. They have a smart list of Chinese teas from Maison des Trois Thés ranging from a light white Ten Chong Bai Xin tea to an intense aged 1998 vintage Pu-erh tea. I’ve opted for the You Xiang oolong tea that is medium bodied and has faint notes of citrus to go along with our pastries.
The two pastries of choice was the day’s pastries of basil lemon tart and a chestnut cake. The basil lemon tart was divine. The bright acidity of the lemon cream was heightened by the freshness of the fresh basil. The crust was crisp yet thin enough that it was a perfect texture contrast to the silky basil lemon cream. It tasted like summer in a tart. The chestnut cake described is better looking (and tasting) in person. It’s a thin dacquiose cake layered with a pillow-y layer of delicately sweetened chestnut cream and a hint of dark chocolate and cocoa powder.
When we gotten around to try the small dish of mendiant, chocolates and the pair of Genin’s signature passion fruit caramels, I had to end this visit with a bang and have the passion fruit caramels with my friend. If anything that was memorable for my friend on this particular visit, was this mind blowing caramel and understood my relative obsession of Genin.
To view more photos of this visit, please CLICK HERE for the set of view the gallery below:
133 Rue de Turenne
75003 Paris, France
Phone: +33 1 45 77 29 01