Having found one bread shop (the foccaceria) and two patisseries with fantasy breads, I decided that breads-with-add-ins were a trend and that rue Rambuteau was the trend’s epicenter. (More momentous theories have been based on less conclusive evidence.) And then, there was proof positive: there, given pride of place in the window of Pralus, a chocolatier, were these brioches, cleverly called Praluline. Some were chockablock with rose praline (Pralus + Praline = Praluline, see?) and others with bits of chocolate. (My photo really didn’t do the breads justice, so this one is from the Pralus website.)
With visions of bread dancing in my head, what did I have with my (sardine) lunch? A ficelle from Boulangerie Julien, whose shop is on the rue Saint Honore, away from fantasy breadland, steps from Les Halles and just where the locals want it. A word of warning: Unless you’ve got time to wait, don’t go at lunch hour — Julien’s ready-made sandwiches are dejeuner faves. And a tip: If all you want is bread, you can jump the line and go directly to the back of the shop.