Hayes Valley’s Macaron Alley

Either the recession hasn’t hit Hayes Valley, or it’s just bad timing that macaron maker Paulette of Beverly Hills has opened a branch within a two-block stretch that also holds Miette and La Boulange.

A current Paulette special is chestnut, which dordogne devoured within half a block of the shop and deems “wonderful.” The flavor is “nutty and sweet in a more subtle and non-artificial way, a good alternative to pistachio,” says Agent 510.

Agent 510 also really liked the caramel pecan, with a real caramel filling that doesn’t hesitate to skirt the edge of bitterness: “These folks splurge for the good stuff. Yeah, I even licked the wrapper afterward.”

Caribbean chocolate has a softer shell, and comes off like a brownie bite with really intense chocolate flavor. Sweet wedding almond is definitely for the sweet tooths, but it has a good and unusual flavor. Vanilla is also too sweet, and a bit artificial; pistachio tastes utterly generic.

timpoblete did a comparison of Paulette’s, Miette, and La Boulange, and found the Paulette macarons awfully stale. Could it be they’re not flown in daily from LA? Miette doesn’t have the same lively colors as Paulette, but makes up for it with perfect texture and flavor. At La Boulange, your best bet is the rum raisin.

elainew is a fan of Paulette in LA and notes that the fruit fillings tend to be jelly-like.

Paulette [Hayes Valley]
437 Hayes Street, San Francisco
415-862-2400

Miette Confiserie [Hayes Valley]
449 Octavia Street, San Francisco
415-626-6221

La Boulange [Hayes Valley]
500 Hayes Street, San Francisco
415-863-3376

Board Link: Paulette Macarons (Hayes Valley), SF - anyone try it yet?