A stay in Paris practically demands that you seek out some pricey gourmet restaurants for the ultimate dining experience – whether for the view of Notre Dame while dining at La Tour d’Argent or the Michelin- starred elegance of Le Grand Véfour at the Palais Royal.
But Paris also has plenty of hidden gourmet gems that aren’t on the average tourist’s bucket list. We recently got a tip from a local friend that fits that bill – La Carette Trocadéro Patisserie and Salon de Thé.
This is the perfect Parisian dining spot in an enchanting atmosphere just across the river from the Eiffel Tower, tucked between two other restaurants on the Place du Trocadéro. Whether you’re looking for tea, coffee, macarons, sandwiches, salads, full dinners, sweet or savory, La Carette has something just for you.
First opened in 1927 by Jean and Madeleine La Carette as a pastry shop, the turn of the century charm remains here. Shiny pastry cases show off jewel-like homemade pastries that are alone worth a visit.
Our friend assured us that we would love the welcoming atmosphere, so one evening in March we stopped in. The extensive menu was a sweet surprise of choices. It included mouth-watering suggestions of entrée, plat and dessert with fresh seasonal ingredients. Since it was late in the evening, the plentiful salads we noticed on other tables immediately caught our eye. Un choix parfait! The light dressing had just a hint of tang, the veggies were perfectly prepared and delicately arranged on the plate.
Tempted by all those gorgeous pastries surrounding us, we couldn’t resist dessert. The tarte – an iconic dessert – had a little surprise of lime and was simply luscious. The éclair au chocolat now has our vote for one of the best in the city – and we’ve tried a few!
A sweet way to end the day in this pretty Parisian place frequented by those in-the-know, not only is Carette Trocadéro’s menu perfect, so are the hours: it’s open for breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner, late-night snacks. Next time we’re going for the bountiful brunch!
There is also another location in the Marais. In 2009, La Carette opened under the arcades of the Place des Vosges.
Do you have any favourite hidden gems in Paris? Let us know in the comments section below.
Carette Trocadéro: Place du Trocadéro, 75016 Paris. Tél : 01 47 27 98 85. Open daily, 7am to 11:30pm Monday to Friday. 7:30am to 11:30pm Saturday and Sunday.
Carette des Vosges: 5 Place des Vosges, 75003 Paris
Kathy Morton and Debra Fioritto, certified by Atout France as “France specialists,” are travel planners for New York-based Tour de Forks. Recipients of the Julia Child Endowment Fund Scholarship, they design personalized epicurean adventures in France. Past clients include Ina Garten of Food Network and Barefoot Contessa fame. Join Tour de Forks for an uncommon epicurean adventure in France. For more information, visit: www.tourdeforks.com. Tel: 212.327.3424