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Boulangerie "au desir de manon", on rue de Rivoli near St. Paul metro

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It may not be Poilane or Mulot, but we stayed in the Marais last week and were referred to this bakery by the apartment agency's neighborhood guidebook. Everything we bought there was delicious, including their regular baguette, which was more rustic than supermarket loaves; it stayed fresh for 2 days. We had a small (5") pear/cherry cake that was not very sweet, a rectangle of classic French flan, an apple tart, and some other treats to nibble on, and they were all very good and reasonably priced.

I'm generally amazed by how these tiny local bakeries provide well over 100 different items every day. from rustic breads to gorgeous decorated patisserie, huge quiches, viennoiserie, sandwiches, etc. Are there 30 people in the basement?

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  1. No, but thanks for the report. Ain't is great?

    6 Replies
    1. re: John Talbott

      Quite so. Lots of small neighbourhood boulangeries do a terrific job, usually at good prices as well. Also, one doesn't cross the whole town to get some pastries, unless it's for a special occasion.

      As for Au D├ęsir de Manon I believe it's on Rue Sainte-Antoine, unless they have a second branch.
      http://auxdesirsdemanon.com/

      1. re: Dodo

        Thank you for clarifying the address. I thought the whole street was rue de Rivoli, but I it seems rue Saint-Antoine is the bit that's set apart by the row of trees. They're parallel and do appear to be the parts of the same street.

        The link you attached does say they make everything in-house. Attention documentarians, can we see a day in the life of this place, or one like it?

        1. re: gnarlex

          From my experience of running an everything in-house bakery in the US, it requires a lot of organization. A production schedule is set up for each day and has to work like clockwork. Knowing that it is impossible to make everything daily from scratch, many parts are made in large batches and either refrigerated or frozen so that the final product can be put together quickly. Many pastry "foundations" such as genoise, merinques, ganache, sugar syrup, glazes are used in different items; ie the same dough is used in many of the vienoiserie. They can made in large batches, formed and kept frozen for daily baking. Certain items such as fancy gateaux, tortes, cookies, macaroons keep well, therefore, do not need to made each day. A weekly production schedule may look like this: Monday: viennoise, cake bases, pastry fillings; Tuesday is savory filling for quiches and tarts, pastry dough, etc, etc. If a bakery also do bread, they it pretty much operates on a 24 hour schedule. I imagine bakeries in France operate the same way.

          1. re: PBSF

            "I imagine bakeries in France operate the same way"

            I agree some do, but I wouldn't assume they all do. It is only the really good ones that would. Remember a high percentage (non-artisan) buy their baguettes in frozen.

            1. re: PhilD

              This post refers to running an everything "in-house bakery". I realize that many bakeries in France, as well as the US, buy frozen baguettes, croissants as well as other pre-made items.

              1. re: PBSF

                I realise that. I was simply trying to point out to other readers that they could be mistaken if they assume all bakeries produce everything in-house.

    2. "I'm generally amazed by how these tiny local bakeries provide well over 100 different items every day. from rustic breads to gorgeous decorated patisserie, huge quiches, viennoiserie, sandwiches, etc. Are there 30 people in the basement?"

      It is simple, a lot of them buy it in. Yes, there are top of the range ones that do produce everything, and yes there are small artisan bakers shops with more limited ranges that bake everything. But there are lots that don't.

      I stand to be corrected but I believe when a shop is labelled as a "Artisan Boulanger" it only apples to the bread.