The Highly Recommended Chocolate Eclair of Maison Pradier
I visited: 200 Boulevard Saint-Germain 75007 Paris
Tel: 01 83 79 11 21
Open Monday to Saturday from 8:00 AM to 7:00 PM
The first boutique, initially called Maison Rollet, opened in 1859. A family-run business focused on pâtisserie, the shop was located by the Seine near the Assemblée Nationale building on rue de Bourgogne in the 7tharrondissement. Its strategic location drew patrons from the French political elite, like Georges Clemenceau, France’s Prime Minister during the First World War.
The store was eventually renamed Maison Rollet-Pradier, and branched out to selling baguettes, sandwiches, and other viennoiseries (various baked goods). In 1999, Jean-Marie Desfontaines, the grandson of the Pierre Desfontaines (credited with the invention of the double-decker macaron from Ladurée) ran the store. Since 2009, the Maison Pradier has opened many stores in Paris, offering both boutique and restaurant services.
The Maison Pradier won the Figaroscope’s “Meilleur Éclair au Chocolat de Paris” (Best Chocolate Éclair in Paris) in 2015! This motivated me to wait in a long line of regulars (mostly students from the Quartier Latin) who were buying their lunches. Luckily, I snatched the last éclair au chocolat! I would highly recommend their éclair 80% chocolat:the pâte à choux (the choux pastry – the doughy part of this dessert) was perfect, the chocolate filling was not too dark and just sweet enough, the chocolate icing was delicious, and there was nothing soggy or too rigid about this éclair. Plus, it was sold for only 3 euros and 90 cents!
The chocolate and matcha cookies, which looked homemade, were also clearly crowd favorites. I noticed some sweet deals such as the smoothie & macarons package for 6 euros 70 cents! All in all, the Maison Pradier is a safe bet for lunch or a quick snack.