As much as Angelina is touted as the best hot chocolate in Paris, it is a touristy place that everybody knows about. I’ve been looking for an alternative best/anti-fancy-shcmancy Angelina’s hot chocolate for years. I believe I found it. I was leading a Marais tour a few weeks ago and in the Village St. Paul, a maze of flower and plant filled courtyards off the rue St. Paul filled with antique and craft shops, I came across a charming outdoor cafe I had not seen before. I noticed a woman pouring hot chocolate out of a white pitcher into her cup.I stared at her for a moment while she savored it and she looked straight at me and asked me if I would like to try some. Never shy to sample any kind of food, especially chocolate, I said yes, if she didn’t mind. She took a spoon and dipped it in the forbidden liquid for me to taste. It was sensational and I knew I had to come back ASAP for a full cup of this magical stuff.
I decided this immediately had to be a new mandatory stop on my Marais tours and took my next client there.We sat in the glorious sunshine and the owner Cathy brought out a large white ceramic pitcher with the steaming hot chocolate and two rectangular saucers with white cups perched on them plus two glasses of water. I knew we were in for a serious treat. So anxious was I to taste it, I burned the roof of my mouth as I quickly drank. The velvety, rich brown chocolate was so delicious and such a heavenly treat to my longtime neglected chocolate taste buds (I’ve dramatically curtailed my chocolate intake recently), the burn from the roof of my mouth magically disappeared. The consistency was just right- not too thin and not too thick like chocolate pudding. I am one of those rare people who enjoys dark chocolate and milk chocolate equally, and the taste was a perfect balance of both with just enough sweetness.
Needless to say I have been back a number of times and each time is as good as the first. Because I am so fixated on the hot chocolate, I never noticed the rest of the menu at the cafe. They serve light lunch and desserts, but frankly who needs desserts or lunch, when you serve the best hot chocolate in Paris.
Comme å la Maison
Village St. Paul / Court Vert
9 rue St. Paul, 4th arr.
Metro: St. Paul
Tel. 06 89 32 00 10
Open 12PM to 6PM, Tuesday to Sunday
Note: It’s a little tricky to find. If you walk down Rue St. Paul from rue St. Antoine, look for the last open archway on the right side and walk through the courtyard to find it.
Richard Nahem is a native New Yorker who now lives in Paris. A successful New York City event planner and producer of cultural events, he has worked with many celebrities including Sarah Jessica Parker, Whitney Houston, and Joan Rivers. After a teenage trip to Paris made him an instant Francophile, he visited the city frequently until he made it his home (in 2005).
With 25 years of rave reviews from friends and colleagues, Richard decided to take his own private tours of “his” Paris public. His goal for Eye Prefer Paris Tours is to provide fun, adventurous, and exciting tours of Paris for the independent-spirited traveler.