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You haven’t lived until you have tasted a macaroon by Pierre Herme!

Submitted by on April 14, 2009 – 3:49 pmNo Comment

Pierre Herme MacaroonsHotel des Academies et des Arts in Paris, France, has opened Chez Charlotte, an intimate and gourmet tea room. Although primarily named after owner Charlotte Inchauspé, Chez Charlotte was once a café next door at 13 Rue de la Grande Chaumiere, where painters would often trade works of art to pay their bills. (Artists please note: that practice is not a policy at the new incarnation!)

Set within the lobby of the 20-room boutique hotel which pays homage to its neighborhood’s artistic heritage, Chez Charlotte serves a wide selection of gourmet teas from Le Palais des Thés, the foremost tea purveyor throughout Europe. With over a dozen teas from around the globe on offer, guests can savor the flavors of varieties such as The du Tigre, which is a Taiwanese smoked tea, or Fleur de Geisha, a tea inspired by the Japanese Hanami tradition of viewing cherry trees in blossom.
The highlight of the tea service however is the selection of macaroons from Pastry Chef Pierre Hermé that accompany the herbal libations.  (Hermé has shops both in Paris’ Saint-Germain-des-Pres and in Tokyo.) With a thin, crisp shell, circular in shape and slightly rounded, Hermé’s macaroons appear in a rainbow of colors. Hermé has created confections made of balsamic vinegar, white truffles with grilled hazel nuts, chocolate and foie gras, wild roses with fig and foie gras, as well as black truffle.
Besides his small shop on Rue de Bonaparte, Herme’s Macarons can be found at famous French bistros Deux Magots and Lipp, both in Saint-Germain. Hotel des Academies et des Arts is the only hotel in Paris to serve them.
At Chez Charlotte, tea is 4,50 Euros and a selection of macaroons 8 Euros. Chez Charlotte is open seven days a week from 2:30 to 6 p.m. Reservations are not necessary, although can be made via e-mail.

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