Walking the streets of Saint Michel a vitrine caught my attention. They claim to have the best éclair in Paris and boast of a prize they won in 2015. The place looks neat and clean, giving off a certain class and finesse. I stopped for an éclair... I ended having a complete lunch.
I came here because of the sign "Best Éclair in Paris" and left devouring my lunch, this super sandwich and a unique salad before even touching those éclairs.
Spread on two floors, the place has a display fridge showing all those cakes and éclairs, as well as ready to go salads and sandwiches. A welcoming staff takes care of the clients one at a time. Grab your tray and take the stairs up where the seating is. Leather sofas and designer chairs fit into a square space that can welcome a large number of people. The walls are decorated with designer posters showcasing the pastries the shop serves. A large chandelier and black tiles with a view of the busy street below.
A rectangular pain au lait hosting two slices of salmon, molten ripe avocado and mango for the sweetness and finesse together with a spread of lemon cream. A really good sandwich, being lightly toasted adds an outside crunch while keeping the heart tender and soft. The balanced flavors of the salmon, the saltiness and lemon's freshness all together. A simple sandwich taken to another level.
Capucine Salad: Oh Lord this salad is so good. Imagine mini crunchy broccoli chunks mixed with cubes of sweet and watery watermelon, firm and full bodied melon and boiled shrimp. All together in a fine raspberry sauce. It's this unconventional salad that looks good and tastes great. The textures and aromas take you on a journey while ingredients jump from one side to the other caressing your taste buds. This salad gave me ideas!
It's éclair time; the verdict is .... not impressed.
I have been to Un Éclair de Genie five or six times already, leaving impressed every time I visit. The three éclairs I tried today have a superb filling, but the texture and dough can be much improved. The framboise is too thick, sticking on the palate and cheek. The coffee is rich and flavorful, but the dough feels dry. The 80% chocolate is intense, but the dough is unpleasantly watery. I'm not sure how and what made them win the title of "best".
Maison Pradier is recommended in my books for the salad and sandwich but not for the éclair. Today I discovered a unique salad and an exceptional sandwich you must try.