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Authentic French Macaroon's?

Anywhere in the D.C./Md./Va. make these?

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  1. I don't know if the version at Mother's Macaroons in Arlington is authentically French, but that's the first place I'd start.


    1. Such a great question. You are talking about the heavenly little puffy (meringue) sandwich cookie with a small layer of filling macaroons, right? Not the coconut ball macaroons? We had them in Paris over New Years and realized we had never seen them here in the Baltimore area, but if anyone else has, I'm very interested as well.

      6 Replies
      1. re: a70wilson

        ^^YES! Those are the exact type I'm looking for! I haven't seen them anywhere yet around D.C.

        JACKPOT: I just called "Patisserie Poupon" in Georgetown and spoke with a lovely woman who informed me they DO make and carry traditional Macaroon's! Yay!

        1. re: beauxgoris

          If Patisserie Poupon is convenient for you, then you won't want to bother checking out the Italian macaroons at Balducci. These also seem to match your description.

          1. re: Indy 67

            ^^Good to know though - thank you.

            1. re: Indy 67

              I was at Balducci's today and the macaroons I mentioned were on display with some Passover foods. With the exception of these Balducci-bakery macaroons, every other item in the display was a national brand of kosher for Passover food. The macaroons were in a plastic container with a Balducci label that read KP Almond macaroons.

              I've always referred to these as Italian macaroons; I've got to assume that the recipe uses no flour and makes them legit for Passover food restrictions.

            2. re: beauxgoris

              i actually work across the street from poupon-i can check it out for you if you want to save a trip? they have the most deliicciioussssss croissants. yum.

            3. re: a70wilson

              This is obviously a very old thread but in case anyone is still looking for these in Baltimore, we have a Patisserie Poupon, too.

              Patisserie Poupon
              1645 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, DC

            4. Praline in Bethesda does them beautifully (the best, in my opinion, in the area). My favorite is caramel!

              2 Replies
              1. re: jenmari26

                ^^^ I've never even heard of them - where are they located?

                1. re: beauxgoris

                  They are in a little strip mall (Shoppes at Something-or-other?) on Sangamore Rd., kind of off MacArthur Blvd. In addition to the bakery, Praline is also a restaurant that I think got a very good review in WaPo.

              2. I've seen them at Cornucopia in Bethesda (Italian market/cafe) and at Classic Bakery in Gaithersburg (Armenian?). I think Cornucopia had a few different flavors, such as chocolate and lemon - and there was some bit of a soft paste between the cookie sandwich, whereas Classic Bakery uses walnut and almond to make theirs, and there isn't any kind of filling between the cookies, they're just kind of stuck-together. Not sure which, if either, would be considered "authentic" but I enjoyed them both.

                1. You can also find them at Dean and Deluca and Marvelous Market (at least the Georgetown location.)
                  I scored a package of plain almond ones at the Tenleytown WholeFoods. Only $3.50 for 7, which is a steal. Not the most amazing macarons I've ever tasted, but not bad.

                  1. You might want to check out www.michelpatisserie.com He delivers out of Arlington, VA with pickup and local delivery but they also now allow for national delivery.

                    Michel Patisserie
                    Arlington, VA, Arlington, VA

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: theirmom3

                      I saw these at ACKC on 14th St., NW last night. But they are bit hidden at the far end of the cashier's counter, so I don't know what the turnover is like / how fresh they are.

                      1. re: Steve

                        They have been surprisingly good in my experience, but you have to make sure to let them warm to room temperature before you eat. ACKC's are probably the best I've had in DC. I have not had great luck with other pastries at ACKC, where freshness is indeed a concern.

                        You can also get macarons nearby at Mid City Cafe. Pretty good.

                        1. re: hamster

                          I have also gotten them from Cacao in Bethesda and thought they were very good - but I like (room temp) ACKC's better.

                          1. re: hamster

                            Just to clarfiy: the macarons at ACKC are from www.michelpatisserie.com

                            Michel Patisserie
                            Arlington, VA, Arlington, VA

                      2. the ones at patisserie poupon are delicious and pretty cheap.

                        leopolds (a german restaurant in cady's alley in georgetown) has them as well, i think they are 50 or 75 cents a piece. so yummy.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: kneelconqueso

                          Yes, I just tried Patisserie Poupon's the other day and they were only 25 cents each!? At Dean and Deluca they're maybe $1.50...I will have to check Leopold's next.

                        2. Just went to lunch at Adour in the St. Regis and they give you a pretty large plate of these complimentary with dessert. They rocked.

                          6 Replies
                          1. re: tld373

                            WHAT !%@#%@ They're only 25cents at P.P. in g-town?! I've been paying 1.00ea at Praline in Maryland.

                            1. re: beauxgoris

                              Yes, I know! They sell by the pound, not per piece, and the other day I got 2 (somewhat small) macarons for 54 cents.

                              1. re: beauxgoris

                                The ones at P.P. are cheap and they are not very good. They pale in comparison to those you buy in France. I think some of the best around are from Michel's Patisserie, but they are much more expensive- two good bits about $1 each. Cafe Du Parc makes larger ones for around $5 that are really pretty good.

                                1. re: mmusiker

                                  Of course they pale in comparison to those in France. But I found the P.P. ones certainly better than those I've had at Marvelous Market or Whole Foods. I'd say they're probably about the same level as the Dean and Deluca ones I've tried, and I haven't tried Leopold's yet.
                                  Every time I go back to Paris I make sure to make my pilgrimage to Laduree, so believe me, I know the real thing! By the way, if you ever go to New York, the macarons I sampled at Payard on the upper east side were definitely at France-level quality. Jaw-dropping.

                              2. re: tld373

                                I special ordered a dozen macarons from Adour. $22. I called and ordered the day before. I received six salt butter caramels, and six red berry. They were exquisitely prepared, though the caramel are far superior in flavor to the red berry.

                                I also got some from the counter at Localot in Adams Morgan. These were not as fresh and they were quite a bit sweeter. They cost $1.85 each. They are not housemade. The chocolate had good flavor, but the fruit ones were too sugary.

                                I wouldn't get the ones from Localot again, but I'm looking for a good excuse to order the ones from Adour.

                              3. As someone who has sampled Laduree macarons, the only two places I can recommend in NoVa for pretty decent macarons are:

                                The Swiss Bakery and Pastry Shop
                                Ravensworth Shopping Center
                                5224 Port Royal Road
                                Springfield, VA 22151


                                Pastry Xpo
                                8190 Strawberry Ln
                                Falls Church, VA 22042
                                (571) 282-4970

                                I would call first to make sure they aren't sold out though.

                                Pastry Xpo
                                8190 Strawberry Ln, Falls Church, VA 22042

                                1. Thanks for recommending Michel Patisserie! I tried four of them at Artfully Chocolate in Alexandria and they were SO GOOD! They were $2 each though. Still, I think I'm going to order them through his website and pick them up in Arlington.

                                  Michel Patisserie
                                  Arlington, VA, Arlington, VA

                                  1. I think the ones at Tout de Sweet in Bethesda are pretty good.

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: Doh

                                      I heard that Paul Bakery in Penn Quarter has them... has anyone tried them there?

                                      1. re: Doh

                                        Agreed; all of the pasteries I've had there have been excellent.

                                      2. Another vote for Tout de Sweet here. Exquisite texture and intense flavor. Costly but worth it!

                                        1. I just got some macarons at the West End Farmers Market in Alexandria last Sunday. They were amazingly good. Not cheap, but good. Unfortunately, I didn't take a card and the plastic container that held them didn't have their name on it...so I have no idea who made them.

                                          Suppose I'll just have to go back this week...

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: TheMatt

                                            It was Marianna's Macarons https://www.facebook.com/MariannasMac.... Marianna and her husband are really nice, they are sometimes at the Del Ray Farmer's Market too.

                                          2. I know this is a pretty old thread but I would still like to post my journey into finding French Macarons.

                                            I visited Paris in January 2012 and had the opportunity to taste Laduree and Pierre Herme's macarons. I liked the ones at Pierre Herme way better than Laduree so I bought my wife box of 7 from Pierre Herme. Needless to say my wife loved them.

                                            After about a week after I returned my wife and I were having withdrawal symptoms so we decided to search for French Macarons in MD/VA/DC.

                                            Here is our review of the ones we tried.

                                            PAUL Georgetown - They have some big macarons for about 5.45 each. and some tini macarons in a box of 12 for about 17.00 after taxes. Being a french bakery I was very disappointed. Their macarons had the consistency of a rice crispy marshmallow square. Won't be trying those again.

                                            Praline Bakery Bethesda - Their macarons are very small and also very dry. They definitely didn't taste fresh. I think they don't sell too many so they keep them a little too long. Macarons were also had very little filling in them.

                                            Tout de Sweet Bethesda - Small little bakery in Bethesda. Friendly staff but their macarons are very sweet. I could not finish even one and I had a headache! Also they put so little filling in them that at $1.50 per macaron I felt robbed.

                                            Dean & Deluca Georgetown - They had some of the bigger macarons with the exception of Paul. They price them at $1.50 each. I could definitely tell why they are $1.50. They were soooo bad! They did not taste like they use good ingredients. They were more like a tostada than macarons. Macarons are supposed to have a slight crunch to them and then melt in your mouth. Not these. They were all crunch-hollow-dry; not a good experience. At their quality they should not cost more than 25 cents.

                                            Andrea Carmona macarons - Our very favorite! We got word of these wonderful macarons from a friend of ours who is a macaron lover, world traveler and food connoisseur that swore by them.

                                            We ordered a dozen at $25.00. The box came with an assortment of three flavors:
                                            Belgium chocolate/sea salt
                                            Valrhona dark chocolate
                                            Coconut and white chocolate (One of my personal favorites)

                                            I can say that if I did a blind taste test of Pierre Herme and Chef Andrea's macarons, I could honestly not tell which is which! Needles to say they went very quickly and we were wishing we had gotten two dozen.

                                            After buying a box of 7 macarons at Pierre Herme in France for about 35.00 us dlls, these at $25.00 are a great buy! They use one of my favorite chocolate brands (Valrhona) and you can surely taste the quality of ingredients.

                                            Currently you can only get them by pre-ordering them. They change their flavors weekly. Don't know exactly what area they cover, but luckily they do cover the Bethesda/Chevy Chase area.

                                            Here it the website www.andreacarmona.com

                                            Hope this helps someone.

                                            5 Replies
                                            1. re: mdfoodie98

                                              After reading this review I decided to try macaroons from Andrea Carmona. I ordered a dozen to try them out. The presentation of the macaroons was delicately beautiful and classy. Our box came with pistachio, dark chocolate hazelnut and triple vanilla. OH MY GOD! triple vanilla was to die for! They advertise it as having Mexican, Tahitian and Madagascar vanilla and it is vanilla heaven!

                                              I liked them so much that they are my favorite thing to give as gifts for my friends on special occasions.

                                              C'est Magnifique!

                                              1. re: antoinetteandcake

                                                Is the only way to order via phone or email?

                                                I tried Paul Patisserie's macarons by the Archives Metro over the weekend. While the flavors weren't bad the shell was incredible moist, dense, and chewy.....brownie-esque. We got the larger sized macarons for 5.50 a pop which I thought was overpriced considering I paid 3.50 for a large macaron at Bouchon Bakery last weekend.

                                                1. re: shake N baik

                                                  Bouchon's macarons used to be so much better, along with most items there. Last few times we've been, the flavor of the macaron (especially the vanilla bean) was anemic, the shell was cracking, there was no sheen, and the texture was like the brownie-esque one you described. Maybe they had just been sitting for too long, but it's happened many times now. I think they opened too many locations and quality has suffered.

                                                  1. re: bmorecupcake

                                                    Cracking shells agreed. They did not hold up well to travel but they were no where near as dense as the ones I tried at Paul's even when I ate them the next day.

                                                    Perhaps its the bigger format? These are the only two bakeries from which I've bought large macarons from.

                                                  2. re: shake N baik

                                                    Dear shak N baik,

                                                    I always order mine via email. They have always responded to my emails within an hour of sending it.

                                                    I had the same experience with Paul Patisserie's macarons very brownie-esque. Not good at all.

                                                    Bonne journée!

                                              2. I picked up some macaroons from Locolat for my housewarming party to add to my dessert tray and they were very good. I'm not a connoisseur but for $1.85 each, I enjoyed sneaking a taste of them when putting them out!

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: Jeserf

                                                  As I poasted upthread, it's the only pastry product Locolat doesn't make in-house. Whoever supplies them probably supplies other places in the area. They are too sweet for my taste.

                                                  1. re: Steve

                                                    Didn't matter to me - they looked cute on my tiered dessert tray at my housewarming party, and people enjoyed them - not looking to buy them again. There are better calorie intakes than macarons to me.

                                                2. ****UPDATE****

                                                  Oh My God! Just got some great news from my favorite macaroon place and wanted to share with my Chowhound friends.

                                                  Andrea Carmona is opening a store in the Prime outlet mall. It's kind of a ways from me but hey, shopping is shopping and it's a great excuse for getting out to Hagerstown and getting myself a couple dozen of their wonderful macaroons. Delicious!
                                                  Can't wait for the grand opening! LOL


                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: antoinetteandcake

                                                    We made the trip to Hagerstown in late July just for Andrea Carmona's macarons. I wasn't enamored with all the flavors, but there were definitely a few winners. I didn't feel like any of the macarons were a waste of calories, though. Staleness is a huge issue for me when it comes to macarons, and recently I've come to find out some macaron sellers freeze their macarons. Andrea Carmona's business is very upfront about these sorts of details, and for this reason I would definitely travel again for their macarons.

                                                    Their store will be in the Hagerstown Premium Outlet Mall's food court. They plan to sell non-macaron pastries there, too. I'm a little concerned that might not be the best location for their business given every other store in the food court was a chain.

                                                  2. I have given up on finding exquisite macaroons in our area. Patisserie Poupon, Praline and Paul's are all ok, but not as good as the best. When I lived in Paris, my favorites were from a bakery in the Marais, I think it was called L'Avain? Ladurée's are too sweet for my liking. The very best macaroons I have ever had were in Quimper at a bakery called Philomena's. I am trying to reproduce that flavor and texture at home as I go into scientific overdrive in the art of making macaroons.

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: laraffinee

                                                      No need to give up if you haven't tried Adour, as I noted above.

                                                      1. re: Steve

                                                        Yes....seems definitely worth trying.....