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Published by Oat Sitalasai — 5 years ago

For a city - and country - so well-known around the world for its amazing cuisine and elegance that comes with it, there is no such thing as “enough” of fresh made breads and viennoiseries. It saying this, I would like to introduce to you my current, and unmatched Patisserie for getting the best pain au chocolat and butter croissants in the 11th arrondissement. 

Let me first start off my drawing a picture of its location. Montesino is a very small Patisserie and Chocolaterie located almost an equal distance - five minute walk - from both metro stations Parmentier (Line 3 Green) and Oberkampf (Lines 5 Orange and 9 the other Green). Yes, this is also not a long way from Republique, but it’s best that you either get off any one of the suggested stations or simply ask your mate Google Maps to get you to 57 rue Oberkampf. 

Another very important note that I need to mention is, if you’re planning on visiting this place, do keep in mind these two things: one, they do not open on Tuesdays, and two come early. The first point was quite clear, but for the second, come early refers to around 9:00am. I would say that this is the best time to head over to Montesino since this is exactly when all the freshly baked goodies come out from the oven. I have my morning classes nearby and I would always be at the place by 8:55am, and the pain of chocolats are either resting on the display counter already, or even better yet, still making their way out from the over to the tray. Just hopping back to the opening hours, they’re close on Tuesdays, and are open from 8:00am until 2:15pm, then a short lunch break where the shop will then resume again from 4:30pm until 7:30pm, on weekdays. Saturday will see Montesino at your disposal from 8:00am until 8:00pm, 12 hours of greatness with no pause. Sunday is always the peaceful one here in France, so they reward the hard working team by opening from 8:00am until 1:30pm. 

*My apologises for such a blurry picture, but my hand was freezing from the cold and my stomach was completely empty!

Before I go into crazy details about the quality of their baked yummies, let me first tell you how much they cost. A croissant? Not even a euro. Yes, I kid you not. One butter croissant, fresh from the oven, made with the love and care of a French pastry chef, is €0.95. Great, how about one of those pain au chocolat for champions? Well, slightly over a euro. One piece with cost you €1.05, a price will barely do any damage to your wallet. These are hands down the best price you can pay for a croissant and a pain au chocolat in this area, and I don’t know, but perhaps a strong contender for the whole city too. By all means, I do have the luxury to visit every single boulangerie, patisserie and cafes in the city, so I would not be able to confirm that this is the cheapest you can get, but please do let me know if you have another favorite! I am consistent down for good croissants and good pain au chocolats for cheap - obviously the bakery section of Mono Prix has got really cheap items as well. 

Okay now, for how good they are. I would say that if you’re French and if you’re good enough to open up your own place, you really should not fail at making simple items like these two. In all honesty, I would stop by this place about four out of my five days in the area, and have been doing so for over a month - yes, you could imaging how much money I have spent so far here. I can strongly say that there is a strong consistency in the quality of their baked items. Never was there a time that I was unhappy with my croissant or pain au chocolat (they’re supposed to bring you instant happiness like other foods, after all). The pain au chocolats are just amazingly good. They put in a generous chunk of chocolate and are not greedy to present them as they should be. The pastry is flakey and the taste is just the good amount of nuttiness and richness from the butter. The same goes for the croissants too. They’re beautifully textured and they fall into little flakes when you bite into them, as they should be. They’re slightly more buttery than their cousins but another element that make them so great. 

While you’re around here, in the corner of rue Oberkampf and rue Gambey, is a restaurant called Pierre Sang Boyer. There are actually two parts of what seems to me the same restaurant, but according to their website and to some extent, the menu, they are two places. So the one further into rue Gambey, you’ll be able to experience cuisine of Korean influences, from where the main chef himself hails his roots from. I know for a fact that for lunch time, they have a ‘bibimbap special’ for an amazing €7.00 in which is a deal that will not present itself very often in this area - or probably in most areas of Paris unless you’re going for a kebab with chips. My assumption at this point is that they do something a bit differently with the food over on rue Oberkampf. I have seen a lot of bread on the table, so it is somewhat safe to guess that the menu here is not entirely Asian centric. The website will allow you to also book in for a table for both lunch and dinner periods.

And there we have it, my current favourite place to get croissants and pain of chocolats at Montesino. They also specialise in chocolats and other cakes and desserts, as you could see from the pictures earlier. The croissants, pain au chocolats, apple turnovers, almond/hazelnut chocolate croissants and so on will run out by about noon since they’re so good and the price is incredible for value. Like I said, they are a small place, so you might easily walk pass it. Just keep in mind a simple rule of thumb that it’s somewhat opposite U Express and next to Pierre Sang’s restaurant. So get up early, because early birds get the good pain au chocolats!

Pierre Sang Boyer, Oberkampf / Gambey -

If you like the content of this post, or just want to check out some pictures that I take on my adventure, feel free to like and/or follow me on instagram at oat93, cheers!

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