The most original Valentine's Day chocolate in Paris!

Chocolate padlocks at A la Mère de Famille

For the past couple of weeks, I've been pounding the pavement and scouring the city for the most original Valentine's Day chocolate. Peering through store window after store window, all the while trying to keep my cravings at bay, I've seen chocolate hearts, shoes, dresses, cigars, wafers with "I Love You" written in multiple languages, hearts appearing to be on fire, Eiffel Towers, birds with heart-shaped nests, and, did I mention, hearts?

Just when I was about to throw in the towel and give up on finding anything truly innovative, I paused in front of A la Mère de Famille on rue de la Pompe to look at what I thought would be more chocolate hearts. Studying the window, I noticed some chicken wire festooned with red roses, white hearts, and .... what's that? Padlocks with initials engraved on them!? Suddenly, the image of a couple pledging their eternal love to each other on the Pont des Arts popped into my mind. But rather than clamping a real padlock on the bridge, A la Mère de Famille proposes that people declare their undying love with chocolate padlocks. Not only is this idea extraordinarily clever, it's also the perfect alternative to the ones that mar the cityscape of Paris.

The padlocks, decorated with a simple heart or made-to-order with your initials, are 19 euros and have my vote for the most original Valentine's Day chocolate in Paris. Please click here if you would like to see photos of the other chocolate contenders. Disclaimer: As I wasn't able to visit all of the chocolatiers in Paris, I'm sure that I missed many other creative Valentine's Day designs. If you see something that sets your heart on fire, please post a photo of it on "Out and About's" Facebook page!

A la Mère de Famille

Real locks rusting on the Pont des Arts
The Pont des Arts - covered with locks and snow!

Comments

  1. ah, I didn't catch what this image was at first. Now that I see, you're right--very original and clever. And a much better choice that the brass padlocks.

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    1. When I first saw the locks in the window, it also took me awhile to realize that they weren't brass. A la Mère de Famille has done an excellent job reproducing them in chocolate. I hope that I'll have the opportunity to taste them and see if they're as good as they look!

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  2. Perhaps the problem is that Valentine's Day does not have a long tradition in Europe, except in England. As I remember, when I was young, I have only heard of Valentine's Day at school in the English lesson. Greenting from Vienna, also with lots of snow - S

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    1. Greetings, Sanne! I'm a bit late answering your comment and the weather is lovely in Paris at the moment! I hope that it is in Vienna as well. I'm actually very thankful that Valentine's Day isn't as commercialized here as it is in the United States. When I first moved to Switzerland, I don't think that it existed there either.

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  3. What a great idea!! Like JTB said, a much better idea than the brass locks which as of late has gotten out of control. Now locks are being sold by the same guys who jingle souvenirs in your face by the Eiffel Tower.

    I put a lock on last year but it has since been removed, which I will not replace. Does this exonerate me? : )

    Happy Valentine's Day!!!

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    1. I hope that you're exonerated, Mlle Ella, because then it means that there's hope for me. I'm guilty of having put a lock on the bridge for my sister and her husband when they renewed their wedding vows shortly after we first moved to Paris. Now I realize that I shouldn't have done it but at the time I didn't know any better. Live and learn.

      What worries me more than the locks on the bridges is that people are starting to put them on the statues. Yikes!

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  4. This is a fantastic idea since I'm NOT a fan of the padlock tradition on the Pont des Artes...at all!

    Happy Valentine's!
    ♥♥♥

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    1. Unfortunately, it's a tradition that has really gotten out of hand. On an interesting side note, I've started to notice that the locks are making their way into popular culture and advertising. There's even a big lock as part of one of the storefront window displays at Printemps.

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  5. It's amazing to me how many more locks there seem to be now than when I wrote about them for Girls Guide to Paris just three years ago. Chocolate seems like a much better idea.

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    1. I didn't know that you used to write for the Girls Guide, Anne. I took a look at some of your articles and look forward to discovering some of the spots that I haven't tried in "Six Sweet Spots: Parisian Tea Salon to Savor".

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  6. The shot of the Pont des Arts is wonderful Mary Kay and the chocolate locks very Parisian...I have not seen such expression of love elsewhere in the world....thank goodness!

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    1. I haven't personally seen such an expression of love elsewhere, Baron, although I've heard that couples put locks on bridges in Italian cities. I think the trend started there before spreading (like a virus!) to Paris!

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