Paris at Easter kind of reminds me of the characters in desperate housewives. Just as Gabrielle and Marcia would secretly aim to outdo each other with their good-willed neighbourly ‘bake-offs’, the designer chocolate boutiques in Paris launch full-scale campaigns to boast the most impressive designer Easter egg display in town. There is no mucking around in this city– ‘Haute chocolat’ at Easter in Paris is rather serious, not to mention – lucrative business.
This year’s designs are particularly extravagant and the window displays in every chocolate shop are filled with outrageously gigantic, painstakingly sculpted designer chocolate eggs and fantastical themed window displays as the stores are packed to the rafters with excited Parisian chocoholics purchasing designer eggs and gifts aimed to impress. So impressive in fact, I doubt many of these eggs ever actually get eaten. Here’s a selection of some of my favourite designs from this year, and some scenes from the streets of Paris this Easter.
The Designer Dozen. Paris' most impressive designer chocolate eggs on display for Easter 2012. Clockwise from top left: Painting Pots by Jadis et Gourmande, Patrick Roger, Jean-Paul Hevin, Dalloyau, L’Avocat Surprise Des Gâteaux & Du Pain, La Duree Anniversary Limited Edition, Pollock framed by Jadis et Gourmande, Mazet flower egg, Marcolini "Chef d'Oeuf", L’Œuf de Tortue de Jean-Paul Hévin, Pollock egg by Monoprix, Hédiard Œuf Zèbre
One of my personal favorites. The Marcolini "Chef d'Oeuf" is made of dark chocolate with a pralinated puffed rice base. At 89€ a piece, it seems I have expensive taste...
Image © Pierre Marcolini
Simple elegance. Less is more with the class and style of Master chocolatier Patrick Roger.
Image © Patrick Roger
Sculpture meets chocolate. The "Œuf de Tortue" (Turtle Rgg) by Jean-Paul Hévin.
Image © Jean-Paul Hévin
More than just macarons. Ladurée's anniversary limited edition celebrates 150 years. The stunning Oeuf Petale design is adorned with pralinated flower petals.
Image © Ladurée
Chocolate art. Literally. The Pollock framed collection by Jadis et Gourmande comes in small, medium and HUGE. Image © Jadis et Gourmande
The intricate design by Dalloyau is complete with a tiny singing nightingale etched into pearly chocolate. It's very pretty, and very pricey. Starting at 70€.
Image © Dalloyau
Maison Mazet is first a confectionery that Leon Mazet bought 107 years ago. In their Easter window display are 3 giant "Prasline de Montargis" caramelised almond eggs. Image © Rachel Bajada
The giant praline eggs at Mazet confectioners literally stop curious passers-by in their tracks. Image © Rachel Bajada
The 2012 Easter window display at la Maison la mère de famille - Paris' oldest chocolate shop. Image © Rachel Bajada
The real deal. Chocolate praline filled hens eggs at Jadis et Gourmande, Paris. Image © Rachel Bajada
A parisien dog waits patiently at the door of the Mazet boutique as his owner buys him a fancy Easter treat. Image © Rachel Bajada