Moms and their mini-mes, mademoiselles in maxi dresses and men in man-pris, all with milky relief in mind on muggy, meridional days are making a made dash to visit Mary, the newly-minted gelato maven of the Marais.
Nature seems to be Mary’s muse. She minimally manipulates market ingredients to make her gelato. Most of the flavors are mainstays, but there are some surprises in the mix, especially among the sorbets, which include tea with citrus, avocado, and fresh mint. The strawberry was marvelous but the apricot was merely moyenne. For me, the migliori sorbets manage to maximize and magnify the flavor of fruit, and this one missed. On the creamy side, the pistachio was alright but the standout was a magnificent crema, tasting of sweet pure cream. Mmmm.
Mary is majorly charming, and most of what she makes is quite good, which is marvelous because she is often missing many flavors, and she metes out a meager measure, at least for this mouth. My mind is still mixed up as to why the price modulates for more flavors, since the amount that materializes is always the same. It’s mildly maddening, though not more than any of the other math-defying mysteries of Paris.
Me thinks Mary may be a bit overwhelmed by the marauding masses, but she manages to make time for each customer, necessary since the menu misrepresents what’s actually made. Making conversation with Mary is a multilingual affair – forgo “merci” for “molto grazie” and make due.
Mary is getting press and praise of her own, but it surely doesn’t hurt that Merce and the Muse just opened next door.
Merce’s mix of sweet and savory bites, including multi-colored quiches and salads next to Rice Krispie treats and carrot cake, will make many Americans feel at home.
I’ll spend my money on Merce’s masterfully made espresso drinks. Or I’ll try, anyway: Mayhem had descended upon Merce and I waited many minutes to pay for my macchiato, the mixed side of mighty media blessing from My Little Paris.
Maybe Merce and Mary should hold meetings and figure out how to manage the masses.
Mary 1 rue Charles-François Dupuy, Paris 75003
Merce and the Muse 1 rue Charles-François Dupuy, Paris 75003