By Bryan Pirolli in Paris—
When it comes to the all-time best street food in Paris, nothing beats the almighty crepe. Sure, the city’s donor kebabs are good and the falafel is downright addictive, but neither captures the French culinary genius quite like the crepe. With both savory and sweet varieties, a crepe is a necessary part of any Parisian adventure. Plus, it’s one of the only acceptable forms of street food that you can eat while walking around without being judged by the locals!
The best crepes in Paris?
Parisians all have their favorite local crepe spots, but here’s a quick list of my favorites, should you find yourself craving a buckwheat ham and cheese-filled snack or a banana and Nutella dessert while sight-seeing. Fortunately, some of the most satisfying crepes are right on the beaten path, and it’s not uncommon to see Parisians lining up with visitors.
So, after many hours spent waiting in line and arduous tastings, I have a few reliable suggestions:
Latin Quarter crepes
Pantheon: If you’re meandering through the Latin Quarter by the Pantheon or you just had a pint in one of the student-friendly bars on rue Mouffetard, head to Au Petit Grec (66, rue Mouffetard, 75005 Paris). They heap ingredients onto a wide variety of crepes, including seasonal ones like the Savoyard, which offers a thick mountain of cheese and potatoes.
Notre Dame: If you are closer to Notre Dame and only have a few euros, the Boulangerie de Papa (1, rue de la Harpe, 75005 Paris) will throw together a quick classic crepe in no time. It’s a solid alternative among the many lower-quality restaurants and kebab places found along the tiny winding streets. You pay by the ingredient, so mix and match at will.
Chatelet’s crepe stands
When the late-night hunger sets in, the serious eaters know that the Chatelet neighborhood can provide sustenance if one is willing to brave the neighborhood at night. Though when better than under the cloak of darkness to indulge in a gooey, cheesy crepe?
Depending on the day and the time, the rue Saint-Denis is lined with crepe stands and shops. As long as you stay near the action and well away from the seedier northern stretch, you’ll be fine. Café Centre Halles (76, rue Rambuteau, 75001 Paris) on the corner of rue Rambuteau and rue Saint-Denis is one of the best, and the crepes are freshly made in front of your eyes.
Marais crepe options
On rue des Rosiers in the Marais neighborhood, right down the street from famed l’As du Falafel, there is a blue façade that serves up traditional crepes–but it’s not the real find. Around the corner you’ll quickly fall upon Princess Crepes (3, rue des Ecouffes, 75004 Paris). Keep your eyes peeled for a storefront that resembles a geisha’s dollhouse topped with whipped cream. This newcomer puts a kitschy, nontraditional, Japanese spin on the crepe–and you won’t break the bank while indulging.
Montmartre’s best crepe
If you’re up on Montmartre near the artist-soaked Place du Tertre, grab a crepe to go from Au Pichet du Tertre (10, rue Norvins, 75018 Paris). They serve their crepes folded in a rectangular shape instead of triangles. Eating can be precarious, but they give you small paper plates to assist in the endeavor or on which to rest your crepe in between bites, while browsing portraits and paintings.
Your favorite creperie?
Be it a buckwheat, mushroom and onion crepe or a sweet Grand Marnier flambé crepe, great crepes can be found in every neighborhood. Tell us about your favorite crepe joints in Paris!