During my first trip to Paris I fell in love with a confection called a macaron. They look like little flying saucers, and are made by sandwiching two almond meringue cookies around a buttercream or jam filling. Since then I’ve had some good macarons in the US, but none of them have quite lived up to my memories of Paris. I decided that it was imperative as part our current detour to see if I had faulty memories, or if the Parisian macarons were indeed that good.

This morning we stopped by a small patisserie down the street from our hotel and picked up a six-pack of macarons (along with our requisite croissant and pain au chocolat). While the macarons here do not look markedly different from those at home, that is where the similarity ends. These macarons were soft but not chewy, with an amazingly thin shell and enough body to hold a moist texture in the cookies. Between the cookies, the buttercream and jams were top-notch. These were flying saucers from a different plane of deliciousness. We savored them all over Paris, from a café macaron at the Catacombs to a pistache one at Musee Rodin, and ending with a chocolat macaron atop the Eiffel Tower. I couldn’t be happier.

six-pack of macarons
Clockwise from bottom-right: framboise, pistache, vanille, café, chocolat, citron

Eating a coffee macaron
Starting off the day with a café macaron while waiting for Les Catacombes to open

near Centre Pompidou
Staving off pre-lunch hunger with a vanille macaron near Centre Pompidou

In Paris, you can even get your fix at McDo

I Shoulda Made a Left at Reykjavik

Our journey home from Oslo was supposed to be a simple matter of 14 hours in transit via Paris, arriving in Seattle on Monday around noon. However, little did we realize that we would be contenting with weather issues that even Lady Gaga was unable to overcome

Our 6:30am flight to Paris was delayed to 7:30, then 10, then 3pm. They were kind enough to provide us with food vouchers with each delay, but with the final update we were clearly going to miss our connection. So Air France re-routed us through Brussels for an overnight stay and departure Tuesday morning (via Atlanta). Updated ETA in Seattle: Tuesday night.

Or so we thought. An hour before departure our flight to Brussels was cancelled as they had run out of de-icing fluid. We were re-routed through Amsterdam, where we got on a train to the Brussels airport. At midnight (18 hours after leaving our Oslo hotel) we arrived at the airport, looked up at the screen of Tuesday’s departures, and discovered that our flight (as well as all other US-bound flights) was cancelled. This was probably the lowest point in any of my travels. We finally regrouped at the airport Sheraton, and after another hour long call we were booked on the Paris->Seattle flight this Thursday.

Things are looking up today. Sleeping in has helped immensely, and we are speeding along on the Thalys train to Paris. We should arrive around 5PM, which will give us a full day and two nights to soak in some unexpected deliciousness. Viva la France!

Free lunch
Lauren making the best of our food vouchers from Air France

Upper Crust bakery
We can verify this claim based on our 10 hour observation period in OSL