Not long ago while strolling down the Rue Saint-Dominique something marvelous caught my eye in an elegant shop window. The display of tall cakes covered with chocolate shavings and meringue at Aux Merveilleux de Fred would stop pretty much anyone in their tracks. They were captivating in their simplicity and the whimsical chocolatey covering. Compared to oh so precisely decorated pastries and precision designed chocolates on display in windows nearby, these cakes just begged to be eaten in one big, chocolate covered mess. There's a lot to be said about desserts like that!
What was even more fascinating than drooling at the rows of cakes was watching them being made nearby. An old recipe from the North of France and Flanders, these masterpieces are the creation of Frédéric Vaucamp, a French pastry chef who reworked the traditional recipe in 1985 … and perfected it! His Merveilleux are made with fabulous and light meringue and then filled and topped with whipped cream and covered in shavings of chocolate. Simple … and divine! In the photo above you can see the meringue being layered with whipped cream and then covered with a smooth topping. Nearby is the tray of chocolate shavings … ready for the next step!
With the huge success of his Merveilleux in Lille, France, Frédéric Vaucamp made the brilliant decision to stick with what drew customers back again and again. In 2008 he opened his first Merveilleux shop in Paris to more success, and now there are multiple locations. There are six different flavors of Merveilleux and they come in different sizes from a cute little meringue that disappears in a few bites to the large layered cakes you can (theoretically) share with friends and family. If you're staying in the 7th arrondissement, do stop in Aux Merveilleux de Fred on Rue Saint-Dominique for something very special to enjoy in the comfort of your Paris Perfect apartment.
If these pictures haven't been enough temptation to make you to add a Merveilleux to your “must eat in Paris” list, head over to read David Lebovitz's review of Aux Merveilleux de Fred. Marvelous indeed!
Aux Merveilleux de Fred
94 rue Saint-Dominique, 7th arrondissement
Open 10:00AM – 7:00PM
(Other Paris locations here)