The macaron is a French sweet delicacy which I discovered after having moved to Cannes in 2005. Walking past the Lenôtre café on the rue d’Antibes, I saw the beautiful, brightly coloured little round pastries and there my obsession with macarons began. I bought 4 there and then as part of my gastronomic voyage of discovery (I must have put on about 10 kilos during my few months in France). I was initially shocked about how much they cost, I think I paid just under a euro per maracon! Today however macarons have become more widespread and the price has gone down slightly, with many good alternatives to the gastronomic version being sold in supermarkets and patisseries. Since my first experience of the Lenôtre macaron, I have tried many others from frozen ones at Picard, to those at my local bakery and the sublime Ladurée macaron, each one as delicious as the next.
In France, macaron’s are increasingly being used as an alternative to the traditional ‘piece montée’; they are very much in fashion in the same way that cupcakes have totally taken off in the US and the UK. Macarons at weddings are often presented on a pyramid to which they are stuck with a little caramelised sugar. Guests can go and help themselves to macarons from the pyramid which is placed on the dessert buffet table.
The best places to buy macaron pyramids for weddings on the French Riviera are as follows:
- Ladurée: Parisian patisserie Ladurée is extremely well-known in France for its excellent macarons. The only Ladurée shop outside of Paris is a small store located in Monaco in the Metropole shopping gallery.
- Lenôtre: On the Cote d’Azur, Lenôtre has 2 stores, one in Cannes on the rue d’Antibes and one in Nice on the Avenue Félix Faure from which macarons for weddings and special occasions can be ordered.
- Fauchon: Like Ladurée, the only Fauchon shop outside of Paris can be found in Monaco. As well as the standard macaron flavours such as strawberry, pistachio, caramel, coffee and chocolate, Fauchon offers a range of innovative macarons using edible gold and silver leaf.
Before you think about ordering a macaron pyramid from one of the company’s above, check with your caterer, they may very well make great macarons too.
Macarons also make great high-end wedding favours; Ladurée in particular do lovely gift boxes, some examples of which you can see below.