DU PAIN ET DES IDÉES
“I’m going to make you bread like you’ve never seen before, and in this bread there will be love and friendship” - La femme du boulanger (The baker’s wife) by Marcel Pagnol.
This quote is one of the first things you’ll find on this bakery’s website and their breads and pastries seem to have a hint of those two things that make them a stand out.
While taking a stroll down the dreamy Canal Saint-Martin, it’s always best to check out the local bars, independent shops, cafes and restaurants. While you’re at it, take a slight detour onto Rue Yves Toudic where you’ll stumble upon the magical Du Pain et des Idées, often said to be Paris’ best bakery.
It almost feels like you have gone back in time as you step into the bakery and this was not done unintentionally. The site had been used as a bakery since 1889 (only 100 years after the French revolution) and Christophe Vasseur, the owner of the boulangerie had wanted to respect the history and authenticity of the boutique.
So what makes this boulangerie stand out from the others? It is the fact that this boulangerie is STRICTLY focused on breads and viennoiserie. Vasseur is dedicated to this art and has explained that many bakeries nowadays have stopped using old traditions that require more labour and time and as a result, the quality of the crust is compromised. You will rarely find a boulangerie that focuses purely on viennoiserie to ensure that the quality is at its highest. Though you might at first be slightly dissapointed if you're after cakes and cream filled goodies, you will quickly change your tune once you realise that you are in the presence of some of the best bread, escargot, and pain au chocolat you will ever have the pleasure of tasting.
The layers on the pain au chocolat are unlike many we’ve seen and the signature pistachio and chocolate escargot is out of this world. The fruits rouges and cream cheese escargot we ordered was just as heavenly as was the sacristain, a twisted pastry with nuts and crème pâtissière which had an old-world charm and deliciousness to it. We highly recommend a visit to this iconic boulangerie to eat as many of their offerings as possible if you are ever in Paris. It is well worth it.
The “pain des amis” is the signature bread with a beautiful dark crust on the outside. Buy a few select meats and cheeses and enjoy it by the canal.
Du Pain et des Idées
34, Rue Yves Toudic, Paris