Still under the shock of the smell at Le Panier (but I came back there and the smell had vanished, so it must have come from some Thursday-stinking-spirit), I went to visit Le Fournil. I got lost while I was going there because I’m not yet familiar with your transportation system. And on my getting lost business, I was wondering what you guys have been doing since we Europeans invented the train in 1804. Seattle is more than three times wider than Paris, but you only have buses and a brand-new unfinished light rail? I expected better from you. I know it’s quite hard to build metro and train lines with a lot of hills, but Westlake tunnel proves that you know how to deal with underground construction (Westlake station is very beautiful, by the way). What have you been doing then?
Bref, I eventually managed to get to the place. No smell struck me. That’s not bad. But it’s not really good neither, since a very good bakery is supposed to attract you with a delightful flavour (but French bakeries may use some bakery-flavoured spray, who knows?). I was impressed to see there was a tartelette aux fraises behind the vitrine. That’s one my favourite desserts, and it looked so attractive I couldn’t help but take a picture of it.
Their vitrine was full with varied patisseries and it was delighting. I had not tasted anything yet, but I already knew this place would earn an A or a B mark. Enthusiastic, I took a croissant and a warm baguette campagnarde, just picked out from the oven, and had a seat. The thickness of the croissant was stunning. It looked like one from the best French boulangeries. I couldn’t believe it. I approached it to my mouth and smelled this delicate and unforgettable perfume. So good. Then my teeth went in the croissant, and the taste bud(die)s on my tongue started a party. I don’t know how to translate it all in English, so I’ll write it in French and you’ll figure out a way to understand what I mean. C’était délicieux. Savoureux. Goûteux. Tendre et croustillant en même temps. Fabuleux. Exaltant. Jouissif. Oui, jouissif.
It was great. Then, I had a try on the baguette. I always start by eating the quignon (the tip of the baguette) while I’m in the street. In my family, that’s the reward of the one who goes to the bakery to buy the baguette. But when this bit of bread entered my mouth, the fairy tale music in my head ceased at once. There is nothing wrong with this baguette. Except that it is a baguette campagnarde. I should have been more careful. Let me explain it to you. "Campagnarde" means that it comes from the countryside. Hence, a baguette campagnarde is prepared and cooked according to the countryside’s habits. But I’m not a guy from the countryside. I’m a Parisian. And Parisian people are the worst French people in the whole country.
Every French drawback is multiplied by four when it comes to a Parisian person. We are four times more proud, fierce, arrogant, snob, and contemptuous than other French people (but our assets are multiplied by four too, so it’s fine). They hate us but we hate them more. We consider them as underclass citizens since they do not live into the boundaries of our marvelous city. We despise them. But we also despise those who live in the suburbs. “Beyond the ringroad, no salvation!” is our motto. And the worst Parisians (which I’m part of) also despise those who live on the right bank of the Seine, this river that flows in the heart of Paris. The only ones we consider as our equals are those who dwell on the left shore, la rive gauche.
Now you may understand why the enchantment did not last with this countryside-taste baguette. If I put aside the fact that I’m a horrible spoiled Parisian guy, this baguette is very good, especially since it was warm when I bought it. There is still some flour on it, proof of its authenticity, and it is quite salted. Given the quality of this food, the price ($1,75 each) is totally acceptable.
According to me, this place deserves a A-.
Good points: • The taste • The taste • The taste • The price (but it’s not very relevant when the taste is so good)
Bad points: • The location: as a Parisian guy, more than 10 minutes in a bus frightens me. Why are you so far from downtown? • The countryside origins of your bread. I despise you, paysans. • Where is the good smell when entering the shop? But the taste feels so good that I don’t really care, eventually.