You thought it was easy right? You just walk into any French bakery and order one of those wonderfully crisp bread sticks that melts in your mouth. Think again. I’ve had stale baguettes, tasteless baguettes, over cooked baguettes – all in Paris where you’d think second class baguettes would be hard to come by.
France is a country of gourmet food, and needless to say they take pride in their typically French products. You don’t mess with a Roquefort to put it that way. As a matter of fact, the Roquefort cheese has been a controlled brand for almost a hundred years. The baguette it seems, has been left to the hands of whoever could mix the compulsory ingredients wheat flour, water, salt and yeast and turn this blend in to a cooked loaf of bread.
One week ago 15 jurors gathered to select Paris’ best baguette of 2010. It’s the 17th time this reward has been given to one of the many boulangeries in Paris. It’s a way to bring pride back to the art of making a baguette. After all, along with the beret and the Eiffel tower, it’s a true Paris icon. So who is the winner? Where should you go on your next trip to Paris for a taste of baguette heaven?
“Le Grenier à Pain Abbesses”, 38 rue des Abbesses in Montmartre
And the prize? Well, Monsieur Djibril Bodian gets to supply Mr. and Mme. Sarkozy with their daily baguettes for the rest of the year, plus he’ll get a 4.000 euro cash prize.
Failing to make it to Le Grenier à Pain Abbesses, there’s this other little bakery I’d like to mention. It’s smack in the middle of gay Marais, and they make baguettes with a twist, bearing in mind that baguette also means wand in French. Their magic wands are their best seller, and if ever you’re in the area, you could always try them out! Legay Choc also creates meringue, chocolate and brioche in the same shape. You’ll find them at 45 rue Ste Croix de la Bretonnerie.