Gastronomy: specialities of Saint-Germain-en-Laye
1822 – « Le Pavé d’Or » (chocolate square with gold)
The tradition of the « Pavé d’Or » dates back to Spanish royal Court in the 16th century. Cortez and his accompanying soldiers made a new beverage extracted from cocoa beans served with a slab of chocolate encrusted with a gold piece. 150 years later, the tradition of the slab of chocolate appeared in Louis XIV’s Court in Saint Germain en Laye: the Queen had delicious sweets made by skilled confectioners as an accompaniment to her cup of hot chocolate.
Today, you can find the recipe, safe guarded in 1822 by Mr GRANDIN (who made his name as a confectioner with this “Pavé d’Or”) at his patisserie GRANDIN.
1837 – « Les Pommes soufflées » (Potatoe Puffs)
History tells us that the first train between Paris and Le Pecq-Saint Germain carrying the Queen Marie Amélie in 1837 was late. The chef of the Pavillon Henri IV, who was very concerned to see his potatoes getting cold, decided to put them back in the grease to heat them and he noticed with surprise that these fried potatoes had become « potatoes puffs».
1837 – « La sauce béarnaise »
Alexandre Dumas Senior and his son moved to Saint Germain in 1844. They lived in the Villa Médicis and had many of their meals at the Pavillon Henri IV, a nearby hotel. Dumas Senior named Collinet, its famous chef, the « expert in culinary art and Béarnaise chops ».
20th century – « Le Saint Germain »
A pastry created by the « Maison Hardy », made of glazed almond and rum.
1925 – « Le Debussy »
This chocolate-based sweet, was created by the « Maison Grandin » in 1925 in memory of the great musician born in 1862 near the shop in Rue au Pain.
20th century – Le fromage “Le Debussy » (Cheese Debussy)
This cheese, specially refined from cow’s milk by the Sainte Suzanne cheese shop in Rue au Pain, is a triple cream cheese with 70% fat.