I’ve heard mixed reviews of Starbucks in France, ranging from comments that their coffee is terrible to comments stating that they are the only decent place to get a cup of coffee in Paris. I think that the reality falls somewhere in between, as their coffee seemed pretty decent (at least as good as in the US, better at some locations than others), but they get two thumbs up for having clean and accessible bathrooms which is a nice plus in a tourist area.
When I stopped into a cafe, I noticed a sign for a limited edition dessert, a dessert sold under the heading “Fusion with Michalak.” Christophe Michalak is a world-renowned pastry chef and winner of the international World Pastry Cup competition, so I had high hopes for the “amusé à fusionner le goût du chocolat et du café” (fusion of chocolate and coffee.” Served in a chocolate cup, the dessert started with a chocolate mousse base, topped with a layer of tiramisu, mini chocolate-covered biscuits (for crunch) a coffee gelee and a lemon-scented mascarpone mousse topping. The mix of flavors and textures worked together surprisingly well and tasted like something that probably should have cost more than 5 euros – but it was just under that mark. Delicious!