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“Absolutely the BEST!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Pierre Herme

Pierre Herme
72, rue Bonaparte, 75006 Paris, France (Saint Germain Des Prés)
01 43 54 47 77
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Ranked #95 of 13,398 Restaurants in Paris
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Takeout, Delivery, Dessert
Neighborhood: Saint Germain Des Prés
Vancouver, BC
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Absolutely the BEST!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2013 via mobile

We were walking in the Marais area and passed by this store. We tried their ispahan last time we were in Paris and loved it. So we decided to go in and get some treats.
Macarons, went for the macarons right away. Picked a box of 7 with our own selected flavours. I forgot exactly what we picked because we did it randomly. But of the 7 flavours that we picked, they all tasted very good. Very sophisticated taste, great combinations and layers of flavours, not just your ordinary monotone of sweetness. We also bought a box of chocolate "Melissa". Milk chocolate with fleur de sel. Smooth tasteful chocolate with a hint of salt. So good! We were offered free samples of chocolate at the end and again, they were outstanding.
We went back on the very same day to get another box of chocolate for a friend. We ended getting some more chocolate for ourselves as well. The shop assistant once again offered us free samples and asked us if we would like to try any other kind chocolate. We tried tsuki and it was superb. The shop assistant also said that was her favourite!
Yes, this store is a little bit on the expensive side, but I think it's well worth it! We finished the macarons within minutes and wished we have bought more. Sooo goood!
Service was professional and welcoming. The shop assistant helped each customer efficiently but yet without rushing them.
Definitely a must eat in Paris!

  • Visited October 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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802 reviews from our community

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HK
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
36 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Best Pastry in Paris, a must try”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2013

They have the best pastry in Paris. Must try the fruit tarts or puff pastry. All the pastry are done so delicately. Not too sweet but yet very flavorful. Its seasonal flavor macaroon is also a must try.

Visited October 2013
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Boston, MA
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
“Biggest disappointment of the 3-week vacation - Bland & Frozen & Made at Factory Tourist Trap - SKIP IT!”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2013

Biggest disappointment of the 3-week vacation - Bland & Frozen & Made-at-Factory Tourist Trap - SKIP IT

It took some planning, but every meal we had in Paris was simply stunning. We were on a food high during the whole visit. Back home, our friends, relatives, and internet reviews all pointed to Pierre Hermes as an absolute "must" when in Paris to compliment our excellent restaurant choices. It received one superlative after another for Pierre Hermes. Our expectations were high.

On the way out of town to our awaiting cruise ship in Le Havre, we stopped at the Avenue de L'Opera location near our hotel on the way to Gare Saint-Lazare. Perfect.

The shop was Parisian-stylish with a somewhat masculine, modern feel. Check. There was a line of Asian tourists to wade through. Check. The servers behind the counter had just the right amount of Parisian attitude and smugness. Check. They recommended pre-bundled boxes of macarons that were a sampler of all their very best flavors. There was an impatient line, we were in a rush for the ship, so this made the selection process fast and easy. All their best-selling macaron flavors, great! Perfect. Check.

The circular sampler box of macarons was very pricey at 30€ ($40 USD) for roughly 9-10 macarons. But why fuss about price for a once in a lifetime true culinary experience whose amazing tastes are simply going to blow your mind? Check. Oh look - a tiny box of really precious-looking tiny chocolates about the size of pencil-end erasers, let's get them too. Another 30€ ($40 USD). Expensive, but surely you must get what you pay for in the highest level of quality here. Check.

Everything seemed as expected in our Pierre Hermes "experience" so far into the process, as we left Paris for Le Havre.

Now arrived in Le Havre by train, walking from Gare du Havre to our cruise ship, we passed a local supermarket. We loaded up with some snacks in preparation for our tea-time cocktail hours on our ship cabin's suite balcony, including several bags of 'generic' supermarket macarons, 7 macarons for 2.50€. We did this almost as a joke, still carrying our nearly $100 bag of Pierre Hermes fresh from Paris with us in the store. "These cheap macarons will be a good counterpoint to how increbile these fresh best-in-class Pierre Hermes macrons will be."

Once onbaord the ship, we began our first cocktail hour on the balcony with such eager anticipation to start our Pierre Hermes tasting experience. The cocktails were poured and the sun was shining across the harbor. Away we go…

We started with one bag of the supermarket macarons first. They had sophisticated and strong flavors - quite impressive for 2.50€. But now it's time for the main show - the $40 box of Pierre Hermes macarons.

First surprise - "Hmmm? For a pre-made sampler box of only their top best-sellers, it is disappointing that they did not have anything to indicate what flavors are in the box?" "Well, that must be because the flavors are so explosive, you'll of course immediately know what flavors they are." "Oh - yes - I suppose that makes sense. But still, a point of deduction in the execution for lack of any labels".

We started with the lightest colors/flavors and worked our way up to the strongest darker flavors. (Much like a wine tasting).

The first macarons we tried had no discernable flavor at all. The tops and bottoms were different colors, but no taste difference or any taste at all could be detected, even when eating the tops, bottoms, and fillings separately. The ganache filling was vaguely pleasant but also had no taste whatsoever.

And through the box of macarons it went - each one being a tasteless disappointment, despite the deepening colors up the range. The last two were a light brown coffee macaron and a deep-black 'brownie-colored' chocolate macaron. The coffee one was the ONLY macaron of the entire bunch that had any discernable flavor at all - where one could even tell it was supposed to be coffee flavored. Surprisingly, the strongest looking chocolate one - our last and darkest one - also had no discernable flavor at all - just like the rest.

The next night we tried the $40 box of small pencil-end eraser-sized chocolates. The box looked high enough to accommodate two layers of these very tiny chocolates, but alas, Pierre Hermes short-changed you again as the box contained a faux plastic tray underneath with nothing but air below - you only got one layer. Unlike the macarons, the chocolates did have some flavor, but was hardly anything to write home about. Given the small number of tiny chocolates, and having felt cheated by the faux missing second level, it too left you with a feeling like it was a total toursit rip off.

In my book, you can charge top dollar for your 'exquisite finely-made' product, but it had better deliver.

After getting home, I read a NYT article about how Pierre Hermes makes ALL of his macrarons at a big industrial factory in Alsace, and then ships them frozen to all his locations around the world, including the nearby locations in Paris.

And that is exactly what these tasted like to me - frozen and factory made where the freezing process compromised the flavor. Much like freezer-burn ice cream - old, stale, and devoid of any flavor.

Asking $40 for 9-10 bite-sized macarons - I expected these to be freshly made on premises. Instead these tasted bland and stale (not stale in texture, stale as in oxidized lack of flavor).

Not being better than 2.50€ supermarket macarons but charging $40 instead - avoid this place like the plague. It is a total tourist trap rip off and sports only mediocre (at best) quality. It is all pomp and show, and no go. It was our only disappointment in Paris, and the only food disappointment in three weeks of France.

You've been warned. The better quality baking comes from a generic Le Havre supermarket - not what one expects from the reviews here.

Tripadvisor has been good to me… just giving back… the glowing reviews here were just WAY off on this one when visiting in person.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“I mean.. it was good.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2013

We bought a very expensive box of macaroons, and let the staff choose the flavors.. I didn't like them very much. I thought they were odd, I don't know. Maybe I'm not a macaroon person?

Visited October 2013
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Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
57 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
“INCOMPARABLE MACROONS”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

The best ever, no ones macaroons compare! When in Paris do not miss his many locations... We have tried them all both in Paris and the US... Always fresh, many choices of flavors.

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