Meeting with
Thibault Leroy
 
 
 

Head pastry chef, Thibault

 
 
 

Impassioned head pastry chef, Thibault Leroy this month shows us backstage at the much-loved stand at La Grande Épicerie de Paris, the pastry stand. Discover at his side the stages of creation and production secrets of our sweet collection, where emblematic products sit side by side with new arrivals. Whether a fruit tart, a Saint-Honoré or a fondant cookie, full flavours and taste are ever present.

 
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How did you become a pastry chef?

 

I started in the family bakery when I was 15. Three years later, I left to hone my skills and learn new techniques in different Parisian pastry-makers’, working everywhere from craft bakeries to tea rooms, to restaurants and hotels.
I also worked for a few years as a consultant. At 22, I accepted my first mission in Russia. I was to set up a croissant shop from scratch, from the production line to personnel recruitment! I learned much from these experiences.
As I enjoy teamwork, I naturally wanted to develop teams around projects and make them grow.

 
portrait Thibault Leroy
 
Saint Honorée
 

How do you conceive the stand's new creations?

 

We often use ideas suggested internally by the marketing teams or artistic direction, or we work with customer feedback. Then, we meet as a team with all the pastry cooks.
As the head pastry chef, I ensure the codes employed and the ingredients used. Together, we define the specifications, but everyone is able to put forward their ideas and let their imagination roam freely. Then, we go over the proposals to obtain the final version that we offer for sale.
Our collections are composed of 18 creations, including ten iconic pastries. The rest of the range evolves gradually, depending on the seasons or on events of the stores. They can be completely new desserts or simply revisited, like our macarons. We offer the beautiful element of iconic desserts like the Paris-Brest, the Saint-Honoré or the chocolate éclair.
Between new creations and special cakes for our events, there is always something novel to see at our stand.

 
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What are your main sources of inspiration?

 

Our DNA is foremost Parisian bakeries’ pastry-making. These sweet elements need to seduce customers and whet their appetites instantly, thanks to careful decoration.
Although the visual element is crucial, we also attach great importance to the place of textures and flavours. At La Grande Épicerie de Paris, our pastry has the sophistication of the Parisian bakeries, but the generosity of large family desserts.
We often propose our desserts in individual or family format. Our customers habitually come to buy their cake every Sunday. It is a more marked trend than in the other places I could work.

 
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Which are the trade secrets of pastry making at La Grande Épicerie de Paris?

 

We propose the great classics of French pastry-making, putting the emphasis on the raw materials. Our Paris-Brest is made with home-made praline and roasted Piedmont hazelnut. The cream of our Saint-Honoré is scented with Tahitian vanilla… Our products are carefully sourced, to the extent that they can become a source of inspiration in themselves! For example, for the cake for operation “All Aboard!”, we began with some exceptional almonds, with 54% fat content. They are full-flavoured on the palate and highly scented. To highlight them, we combined them with a fruity cream, with apricot.
We also take care that our desserts, even the simplest, are crafted to the smallest detail. Our apple tart bases are pre-cooked with a little almond cream, to intensify the flavour. The apples are then caramelised and stewed or quartered and baked. Finally, we dress our tarts before baking them again. This way, the ingredients all confit together. We can achieve incomparable taste and texture on the palate.

 
 
 

Discover selection from

Thibault Leroy

 
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Fallot
Great with white meat or fish, it is also delicious in a vinaigrette with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
€3.20
210 g (15,24 € / kg)
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La Grande Épicerie de Paris
Hand-harvested on Noirmoutier Island from the surface of the island’s salt marshes, this fleur de sel is mild and not at all bitter. After salt-makers carefully harvest the delicate fleur de sel crystals, the salt is placed on special tables to dry naturally under the sun. These fragile crystals...
Hand-harvested on Noirmoutier Island from the surface of the island’s salt marshes, this fleur de sel is mild and not at all bitter. After salt-makers carefully harvest the delicate fleur de sel crystals, the salt is placed on...
€5.90
125 g (47,20 € / kg)
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Château Calissanne
A quality olive oil from a high altitude olive grove. This AOP certified olive oil is an assembly of green Anglandau and Salonenque olives. Pressed rapidly once harvested, this oil reveals the fresh, fruity pungency of the olives. Perfect for Mediterranean-style cooking.
coup de coeur
€17.50
50 cl (35,00 € / L)
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Pralus
Madagascan cocoa is known for its exceptional qualities. This chocolate is created from Criollo beans.
coup de coeur
€7.40
100 g (74,00 € / kg)
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Christine Ferber
Harvested during the high season, these Charlotte strawberries are full of sunshine and good energy, and are cooked as a tasty fruit mixture by Christine Ferber and her team. There's only one rule here: work with fresh products and during the right season. Everything is cooked in old-fashioned...
Harvested during the high season, these Charlotte strawberries are full of sunshine and good energy, and are cooked as a tasty fruit mixture by Christine Ferber and her team. There's only one rule here: work with fresh products...
€9.50
220 g (43,18 € / kg)
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La Favorita
Discover this delicious Italian cep mushroom cream sauce, an ideal accompaniment to your dishes.
€6.85
80 g (85,62 € / kg)
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La Grande Épicerie de Paris
Moist and fondant, calissons from Provence are made from a blend of finely ground almonds and confit melon, spiced with candied orange peel and a touch of lavender honey.
€16.50
220 g (75,00 € / kg)
Domaine Elodie Balme
A rising star of the Southern Rhône valley. This estate, established in 2006 by Elodie Balme, is based in Rasteau and produces sublime, authentic wines. Elodie was brought up in the wine trade, her grandfather was a producer. She took over the family vineyards and also bought additional parcels....
A rising star of the Southern Rhône valley. This estate, established in 2006 by Elodie Balme, is based in Rasteau and produces sublime, authentic wines. Elodie was brought up in the wine trade, her grandfather was a producer. She...
coup de coeur
€10.55
75 cl (14,07 € / L)
PRODUCT UNAVAILABLE
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Fallot
Dijon mustard can be used with all types of meats and fish, and in vinaigrettes, mayonnaises or remoulade sauces. It’s the ideal complement for any type of meat, from beef to poultry and pork to game, whether served hot or cold.
€2.85
200 g (14,25 € / kg)
Eric Bur
Discover Bretzels with salt crystals, Eric Bur at La Grande Épicerie de Paris
€4.40
100 g (44,00 € / kg)
PRODUCT UNAVAILABLE
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La Grande Épicerie de Paris
This chestnut honey is harvested by beekeepers dedicated to their trade and traditional savoir-faire, guaranteeing exceptional results.
€12.50
350 g (35,71 € / kg)
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Mademoiselle Breizh
You can’t get more Breton than these chips. Crunchy buckwheat chips that will soon become a regular dish among your appetisers. Can be consumed plain or to accompany hummus, olive meze, tapenade or other savoury recipes.
€3.80
100 g (38,00 € / kg)
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La Favorita
Discover this delicious Italian fresh-egg tagliatelle made solely from natural products.
coup de coeur
€6.05
250 g (24,20 € / kg)
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La Grande Épicerie de Paris
The delicate flavours of orange flower and bergamot blend with the freshness of these Chinese Oolang and green teas. A mild yet tonic beverage to charm tea-lovers with its floral, plant notes.
coup de coeur
€9.90
100 g (99,00 € / kg)

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