Desperately seeking transcendent Montmartre hard candy
January 25, 2013 10:53 AM   Subscribe

14 months ago, I bought a bag of pink hard candies at this lovely boulangerie in the Montmartre. The flavor seems to be burnt sugar-like. They taste like the fanciest cotton candy imaginable.

I tend to seek out the unknown, so I know the flavor wasn't any french word I am familiar with, which includes most fruit and nut names. The boulangerie does not do mail order, so I am searching for the name of the flavor and hopefully somewhere I can mail order some candies in that flavor.

posted by Duffington to Food & Drink (10 answers total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
Caramel is derived from 17th century French for "burnt sugar" (says the internet). So was it a caramel-type burnt sugar flavor? Or more like a marshmallow or cotton candy/candyfloss?

"La barbe à papa" is a term for cotton candy/candyfloss in French but that's just "daddy's beard" which doesn't much help you in describing the flavor.
posted by Wretch729 at 11:25 AM on January 25, 2013

This sounds like a question for David Lebovitz.
posted by payoto at 11:40 AM on January 25, 2013 [3 favorites]

I am not familiar with French styles, but there is a 19th century flavor called 'nectar' in the literature that can be described as cotton-candy-like, with some vanilla undertones. There is a small candy shop in Florida that makes it; I mention it because everyone I know who has tried it (myself included) calls it fantastic and it is definitely cotton-candy like.
posted by cobaltnine at 12:11 PM on January 25, 2013 [4 favorites]

I'm french-speaking (hey, it's even my mother tongue). I see nothing like what you describe on the web site. Maybe if could be more precise in describing the candies : size, shape, color etc. I could find the french word for what you're looking for. Once we have that word, il will only be a matter of googling.
posted by Baud at 12:22 PM on January 25, 2013

When I think of pink hard candies in France, particularly around Montmartre, I think of the ones from the poppy flower which the bakery is named after. Is poppy flower one of your familiar flavors?

Where Montmartre comes into this is there is a nearby shop (profiled here by the aforementioned Lebovitz) that sells expensive regional specialty candies from all over France. No mail order, sorry.
posted by whatzit at 12:23 PM on January 25, 2013

They were small (about 1/2" long and 1/4" wide) and oval. Clear pink and with a bit of powdery-ness on the outside. Not unlike these, but they were stamped with a something, like a wax seal, but not that wax seal.

They were not caramel flavored at all, really it was just sugar flavor. They were in a clear cellophane tied with a ribbon. the bag had a gold label on it with the name of the boulangerie, but not the flavor. They could be poppy flavor, I do not know that word. In fact, I have looked it up several times!

Thanks for the answers, I am going to order some of those nectar candies, cobaltnine!
posted by Duffington at 1:37 PM on January 25, 2013

This looks pretty close to what you are describing but I haven't tried them
posted by rmless at 2:09 PM on January 25, 2013

Did they look like this ?
posted by Baud at 2:14 PM on January 25, 2013

If it is the ones I linked to, they are sold out on Amazon but I found them here for $11.99. Now I might order some, you make them sound so good!
posted by rmless at 2:23 PM on January 25, 2013

Might the label have been the flavor, instead of the bakery name, if they were indeed poppy? They would both have said coquelicot. Here is a picture and you can find more through GIS. Adding abbesses to the search terms gives interesting results that are from the area around your bakery.
posted by whatzit at 10:03 PM on January 25, 2013 [1 favorite]

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