My slightly manic obsession with macarons is on par with the way some people feel about chocolate or coffee. I SIMPLY LOVE THEM. I MUST EAT THEM. ALL. THE. TIME.
I’m proud to say I’ve passed my obsession on to my boys. Since today was the first day of home school, Bug and I decided to reward them with a macaron treasure hunt/taste test. The goal: find five macaron shops and decided which reigns supreme over all and in each category. Since I’m in quarantine due to illness, Bug took the boys around Paris gathering up the goodies. They returned with a nice haul.
The contenders from top left to bottom: Salon du Thé (1), ; Les Jardins (2), Les Paris Gourmands (3), La Durée (4), Marais Boulangerie et Patisserie (5). From left to right the flavors are lemon, vanilla, raspberry, chocolate, and salted caramel. Two shops were out of vanilla (my flavor), so I averaged out the scores to make it fairer.
The results (scoring 1-5, with 5 being the best):
Flavor: Lemon. Taster: The Colonel. Winner: All of them.
It became clear during the taste test the Colonel does not care if the cookie is good as long as it is a cookie. He rated every macaron a 5 and tried to steal other people’s flavors. He was immediately banned for life from all future taste tests, but that didn’t detour him, and he proceeded to eat as many as he could sneak. If he doesn’t puke tonight, it will be a miracle.
Flavor: Vanilla. Taster: Me.
#1 scored a 2 because it had a medicinal/plastic taste I’ve never experienced before.
#3 The filling had sugar granules that I found weird. My score – a 3.
#4 scored a perfect 5. It was soft, had the right combination of chewy and crunchy, and the filling was perfectly vanilla.
Flavor: Raspberry. Taster: The Fox. Winner: Tie – Les Paris Gourmands and Marais Boulangerie & Patisserie.
#1 scored a 3 for not having enough filling.
#2 scored a 4 for being too soft.
#3 scored a 5 . It was sweet and mushy and tasted like real raspberries.
#4 scored a 4.5. It was penalized for being too crunchy.
#5 scored a 5. The Fox declared it to be “perfectly creamy and yummy.”
Flavor: Chocolate. Taster: Bug. Winner: Les Jardins
#1 ; scored a 3.5. The cookie was too crunchy.
#2 scored a 5. Had a perfect combination of crunchy & chewy. And the ganache was amazing.
#3 scored a 3.5. It lacked filling as was almost all cookie.
#4 scored a 4.5. Almost perfect, but the cookie needed more fluff.
#5 scored a 4.0. Too Soft.
Flavor: Salted Caramel. Taster: Pudge. Winner: La Durée
#1 scored a 4. Not enough filling.
#2 scored a 4. Too mushy.
#3 scored a 4.5. So good, but not as good as…
#4 scored a 5. “It’s amazing.”
#5 scored a 4.5. “Too creamy and the cookie fell apart. But it was good.”
The overall results:
1st place – La Durée
2nd place – Marais Boulangerie & Patisserie – Rue du Vieille du Temple near Rue des Rossiers.
3rd place – Les Jardins
4th place – Les Paris Gourmands
5th place – Salon du Thé