Yes, you read it right! Durian is that smelly, mushy fruit from Malaysia and Thailand. You either love it or hate it. I really love it! Not only do I eat the fruit, but I also enjoy eating cakes, cookies or other combinations with this fruit. Most of these durian food items can be found in different countries in Asia, but did you know that you can also find lots of durian food in Paris? I was so surprised! I went to Paris together with my fellow foodblogger Wendy from her foodblog Mevr. Yan and we visited a lot of foodspots. This post is about the durian foodspots we found in Paris. Curious about them? Read all about it here!
Paris has a lot of Asian restaurants and supermarkets. You can especially find them in the the 13th arrondissement of Paris if you go to the quartier chinois (Chinatown). There I came across two supermarkets and one bakery/cake shop which sells durian items.
As we took the metro to the metro stop Place d’Italie, this was the first Asian supermarket we came across. From the outside you only saw stalls full of vegetables and fruits. I thought this was a fruit and vegetable store, but when we decided to take a look, we saw they were selling asian fruits.
Taro, durian, mangosteen and rambutan, so surprising! When we entered the shop, we saw they sell more asian stuff, like frozen food, drinks, snacks and so on! I saw they had durian waffle, so I decided to buy them. If you want mochi, instant noodle or seaweed snacks, you can find it there also. It’s amazing to came across so many asian food. We also found mooncakes and I bought a box which has durian flavoured mooncakes. I find this rare, so I decided to buy it. When I got back to the Netherlands I saw they also sell mooncakes with durian flavour. But I like that this box I bought in Paris, because they also have other flavours inside. This year (2017) moon festival will be on the 4th of October. Big Store is a nice asian supermarket to look around. They have such a big and various assortment. It is worth a visit!
81 avenue d’Ivry
Nouveau Yv Nghy
When we walked further down the road we came across a Chinese bakery. This bakery has a lot of Asian cakes, like cake rolls and egg tarts. Due to the upcoming moon festival they also sold mooncakes. It was sold individually, so you can mix your own set of flavours. For the durian lovers I saw a durian cake roll and durian mooncake. We came a little late, so some shelves were empty. It is worth to look at their large assortment and try out some of their cakes.
Nouveau Yv Nghy
67 ave Ivry
This is one of the large Asian supermarket chain from China. With a lot of outlets in Asia, they also have nine in France. Two of them are in the quartier chinois. I visited the one at 48 Avenue d’Ivry. Tang Frères (Tang Brothers) has a lot of Asian products, ranging from fresh fruits and vegetables to dry herbs, frozen products and snacks.
They also sell fresh durian and the durian waffle I saw at Big Store. I found the diversity at Big Store more interesting and this one has more stuff which a daily Asian household normally buys for food and drinks.
48 Avenue d’Ivry
Check out their website for the other outlets in France:
Above the Tang Frères we visited, there are a lot of shops. It actually looks like those shopping halls you can find a lot in Hong Kong and China. You can also find a lot of Asian things there, like kpop posters, anime figures and Chinese dresses. Sweet Dessert is also located there. This is a dessert shop with different desserts from Taiwan and Hong Kong, and they also have a French twist to it. Do you like desserts with black sesame, taro, black sticky rice, grass jelly, glutinous rice balls, matcha or durian? This is the place to be! I was so happy and surprised they had durian desserts, so I needed to try them out.
The first time we came it was already quite late and they didn’t have the durian desserts anymore, so I decided to try the durian milkshake. With milkshake I always have the feeling it is very cold, because they put lots of ice cubes in it. Sometimes it taste too watery, chemical or sweet. So I prepared myself for this when I ordered it. I am so happy I was wrong. It was neither of that. It was very creamy with a strong durian taste to it. There were even pieces of durian inside it! I tasted so authentic!
We had to go back again. Luckily we had time on our last day in Paris. When we came again I tried durian milk pudding 榴莲双皮奶. The milk pudding is really creamy and not too sweet. The mixture with durian is very nice. I also had a dessert with a scoop of real durian flesh, black sticky rice and milk 榴莲忘返. I first thought it was durian ice cream, but this is even better. There was a little bit too much ice cubes in the milk, so I didn’t like that at first, but when the ice melted, it was really nice. I loved the scoop of durian, it tasted just like the real thing.
You can also buy crepe with durian. They said it is mostly available in weekends. So if you want to try it out, come in the weekend. The durian desserts are not always available, it depends on whether it is the durian season in Thailand, where they get their durian from. I am curious to try more of their Asian desserts!
44 avenue d’Ivry
Besides Sweet Dessert you have Yinki. There you can buy cakes, bubble tea, sandwiches, but also make customized cakes. They like to make cakes with Japanese anime characters on it, like One Piece or Sailor Moon. I saw they also have durian cake and pancakes with durian and pandan. They all look so good! I tried them on another trip to Paris. Here you can see that they also have a version with mango and Oreo. There are real pieces of durian in the pancake and the white part is cream. The wrap is made of pandan with coconut. I liked the mushy Durian pieces inside and the cream. But I didn’t like the coconut flavour in the wrap. It was too overwhelming.
44 Av. d’Ivry
75013 Paris, France
If you go further north on the Asian street, you will pass the famous Pho14 and beside this Vietnamese restaurant, there is a small bubble tea shop which also sells unique flavours of bubble tea. I saw they had sesame soya flavour, matcha, taro green tea and also durian. From the reviews I read it is not that good. So I didn’t try it. But it is interesting they have a lot of unique flavours. For durian bubble tea you can go to Sweet Desserts and maybe also to Yinki.
129 avenue de Choisy
I really enjoyed all the durian snacks I could find. The quartier chinois has more bakeries and supermarkets and we didn’t check them all out, but I am certain they also have other durian food items there too. If you know any durian hotspots in Paris, let me know! I am eager to try them out and add them to my list.