While walking around Paris, I was surprised to spot so many new chocolatiers on the market. Forget Godiva. Even Pierre Marcolini is quite a yawn. The gourmet world of Patrick Roger amazes with rhapsody of unconventional flavours, unusual combinations of textures and extraordinary choco-aesthetic (I mean, just look at the image above – his current window display on Place Madeleine). Roger’s search for perfection leads to intense, extravagant chocolates with extraordinary ‘fragrances’, as he tends to say. This chocolatier makes no compromises when it comes to the origin of the ingredients he uses in his cooking, looking back at his childhood and exotic voyages for inspiration. Discovering the new and thriving to surprise the taste buds – his green boxes guarantee all that.
And the interior is a delightful addition. Designed by X-TU Architects it has an abstract, honeycomb structure resembling a beehive. It is a modern shop-gallery of sculptures that is not limited to just chocolate packages. Aluminum and bronze perfectly fit Roger’s slightly raw style of chocolate creation.
First photos are by Edward Kanarecki; the last are via Pinterest.
Starting in the late 18th century, the famed “Bully”, established in 1803 on Rue Saint-Honoré in Paris, made a name for himself (which he then wore with a double consonant). At the turn of the 19th century, perfumers were still the heirs of the craftsmen from the Ancien Régime, and the keepers of their trade secrets. The vogue of perfumes followed in the wake of a fresh openness to the world and to its novel, sometimes exotic flowers – as with Joséphine de Beauharnais, who imported to France and acclimatized new olfactory species and audacities. Bully welcomed the advances of science and cosmetics to formulate his own inventions in form of perfumes and scented oils. Among these, his remarkable skin care products achieved lasting fame. Throughout the Golden Century of beauty, which witnessed the invention of the first formulations of modern cosmetics and perfumery, the ‘officine’ gradually established itself as a trend-setter.
Today, Buly 1803 is reborn in Paris, on rue Bonaparte 6 in the sixth arrondissement, with a different spelling and a refreshed concept. Visiting their boutique was like entering a cabinet de curiosités, falling hard for the opulent marble furniture, antique illustrations on the walls, and Japanese porcelain flacons costing 3000 euros and up. Buly 1803 is a true gem and it’s quite unbelievable to find brands like this in our world of fast, mass-consumption.
Don’t get me wrong – it’s not that I’ve suddenly discovered Ladurée out of the blue and thought it’s worth sharing. Ladurée is a Parisian landmark, a cult patisserie. There’s no need to introduce it. Everything is so sweetly aesthetical here, from the pastel-pink plates to perfume flacons. And coming here for breakfast means that your ultimate French breakfast dream comes true. During fashion week, Ladurée on rue Royale is a perfect morning spot for gossips. While eating my eggs Benedict served on a crispy brioche, I’ve overheard how a pack of PRs devastated a Dior person’s career, bitterly complaining about her ‘terrible, terrible’ incompetence. How mean. How fashion!
Le Café des Antiquaires is the perfect spot to sit and sip Noisette in between the shows.
Paris. It’s a cliché to say that Paris is the ‘city of love’. But that’s true in some way, as it’s simply impossible not to fall in love with Paris. If Paris was a person, it would be an extremely multi-faceted, slightly arrogant, but elusive character. Not a friend – rather a great lover. I’ve visited Paris many, many times, but those few days I’ve spent during the last fashion week will stay in my mind for long. Spring is the moment, when Paris blooms. People on the streets are so beautiful. Coffee tastes better, while art exhibitions open on every corner. J’adore.
Click the images below to read the captions.
Lemaire earring at their autumn-winter 2017 showroom.
Lemaire boutique on Le Marais.
A local market.
Never enough of pony hair.
Mimosas, current trend among French florists.
This woman – ultimately Parisian.
Rue de la Grange Batelière.
Before Christian Wijnants show.
Antique perfume flacons.
Delicious brunch for 18 euros – perfectly cooked beef and yummy panna cota. Can’t remember the name, will update this one.
One of the passages near Boulevard Haussmann
Store with umbrella handles, only.
At Lemaire showroom.
Cherry-blossom tree near Le Bon Marche.
“A Rosé” exhibition edited and curated by Luis Venegas at Colette. Here, Dita Von Teese by Ellen Von Unwerth.
Spandex chez Balenciaga.
Flower shop near Le Marais.
Alternative fashion show photography during Christian Wijnants.