When I'm hungry and want to try something that guarantees satisfaction, Google has the answer. I just type "the best of ..." and there I am, in the hunt of a good, enjoyable discovery. Google sent me to Josselin, considered one of the best crepes creators in Paris.
Located a few blocks away from the longest building in Paris, La Tour Montparnasse, Josselin is not any crepe place, but one with a history of perfection and satisfaction. Come here for the crepe de Sarasin, each different and filled with premium ingredients.
Open the door and be amazed by the old, authentic decor of this place, fully loaded with visitors craving crepes. To the right is the open kitchen behind a bar where a huge chunk of butter, melting slowly on a round plate, is used to produce all the crepes. They do use butter, a lot of it, a reasonable portion in every order.
The staff is welcoming and, most importantly, the ambiance and positive vibes around here will put a smile on your face. I've been to famous crepe restaurants before, but never to one that only produces crepes and in factory style, a restaurant that's busy and packed with people.
I would forget about the dirty tables, the overheated air, the lack of oxygen and the tables pressed up against one another so that the waiter can barely pass, focus on the menu with a large selection of possibilities and wait to be served.
While waiting for the orders, I took a minute to enjoy the décor and old style. Dark wood covers the walls and ceiling, brown tiles cover the floor, while glass vitrines decorate the space with porcelain treasures. Between the tables are wooden depressions, decorated with unlit white lamps.
A note before we try the crepes:
- The crepes almost look the same, except the ones with an ingredient on top. No ornamentation, no fancy rolls, but a crepe, folded in two, a quarter circle, filled with ingredients. Eggs and bacon come on top.
- Not too appetizing, the crepes are not homogeneous and not perfectly rounded
- Butter is everywhere...
The experience starts as they land in front of you, with their rich aromas caressing your nostrils:
- La Biche: The goat cheese crepe is one of the best they have. A thin crust, crunchy and light, a slight burnt aftertaste covering the internal juiciness of the filling. Fine white cheese and a hint of the sweetness the honey provides. Surely recommended.
- Maraichere is a spinach and bacon crepe served with eggs and cream. A little greasy, but extremely delicious. The same dough, an overdose of butter and subtle crunchiness. That's a very good one.
- Josselin: Just the thing. Thick and fully loaded with eggs, ham, cheese and mushrroms. It's really really tasty.
- Roquefort cheese in a crepe. Just imagine the strong smell of Rochefort cheese in a toasted crepe. That's not for the faint hearted. Softness... Until you crunch into the walnuts. Innovative!
Since the savory collection was superb, I wanted to try the sweet ones... Here is the big deception.
The dessert crepes:
- Using a homemade chocolate, this watery liquid sauce is too weak. Its consistency is unpleasant and its taste lacks body and flavor.
- The chestnut cream was nothing to write home about. It's way too arty anyway.
- Rum flambé transforms into a bitter flavor that's not enjoyable at all.
- Walnuts are thrown in as is in big pieces instead of crunching them to be enjoyed smoothly.
- The dough is close to being unacceptable, too buttery, too fatty, too oily and too sticky. The Sarasin was crunchy, why is this one chewy? After enjoying one of the finest Sarasin doughs, this second dough was a big no-no for a place that's that famous
The verdict: Yes, Josselin has exceptional savory crepes and are deserved to be considered one of the best in Paris, but I would not say the same for the sweet ones. I would skip them if I were you.