Cupcake Monday! Ladurée and Angelina's
Now, I must confess these Ladurée Champs Élysées images are sneaky pics. When I took Baby Swelle for brunch we were early so we queued in the shop, and I suspected you're not allowed to take photos because you don't really see it there, and I couldn't magine they would allow their exquisite haven of delights to become a flash-fest free for all. I was discreet so as not to be intrusive, then was spied and told 'no pictures.' I got in trouble at Ladurée. I hung my head in shame, then was buoyed when it was my turn to choose. I took home macarons, a gift box of teddy bear chocolates in different colours and flavours for Baby Swelle that I will probably eat most of myself, that mauve egg, and some of their lovely Marie Antoinette tea (which I cannot believe I haven't tried yet - what is wrong with me?!) It's not hard to recognise that it was France's last queen who inspired the decor at Ladurée.
I also took ma petite to Angelina's. I know it's a tourist favourite but hey, as much as I hate to call it as it is, I am a tourist in Paris. And I couldn't rest until I had tried their famous chocolat chaud. It's liquid chocolate that you 'dilute' with whipped cream. Craziness. While the entrance area and shop were pretty (they allowed photos but I didn't take any, sometimes I just don't want to look like a tourist then I regret not having the photos later) and the ground level dining room looked nice enough (it's no Ladurée), I have to say that the upstairs looked like it hadn't been thought of for decades, which is probably the case. That's where we sat. Charming it was not. If you go, wait for a table downstairs, it will be worth it unless you're just there to get your chocolate on.
I asked for their most beautiful pastry and our server brought me their Religieuse pistache. Usually they are decorated with gold balls but this one was missing them, and I have to say I've had better. Way better, in Paris. It wasn't the freshest. We shared one hot chocolate which you pour for yourself and we couldn't finish it between the two of us, it's just too much, though I know many who can handle one all to themselves. They were obviously born with iron stomachs. See that tiny bit of brown liquid in the cup? That was all I had and it was more than enough.
Back to Ladurée whose unwavering commitment to an enchanted experience have never let me down:
Ladurée ice cream!!!
I adore Petits Fours but didn't buy any, it's just all so overwhelming that you don't know where to look and your head spins. And unless you want to drop 100+ euros on pastries that should be eaten that day, you have to curb your enthusiasm. Just before I snapped these photos someone bought the Marie Antoinette entremet in Ladurée green, an unbelievably gorgeous cake that for a moment I considered taking home. Then it was gone.
Photos: The Swelle Life (To the people at Ladurée - no more sneaky pics, promise!)