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VM inspiration: Eclairs to become the new macaroons?

In recent years we have seen a global moment for macaroons succeeded by a craze for cupcakes. Are we now about to see an explosion of eclairs?

Galleries Lafayette’s gourmet and home store, Lafayette Maison & Gourmet, in central Paris has a recently opened a dedicated eclair space operated by L’éclair de Genie, founder Christopher Adam’s éclair brand that offers many more toppings besides the traditional dark chocolate.

The long oblong version of the classic French choux pastry dessert offers endless opportunities for decoration including pistachio and orange, nuts and caramel, and passion-fruit and raspberry, each beautifully presented.

The store format follows that of the premium brand’s small accessories: a long, glass-topped display cabinet at waist-height that can be poured over by indecisive customers, in the manner of Louis Vuitton’s entry-level merchandise spaces. Large, flat show-cards, with the name of the variety and an image of it, fill the space in front of each neat row of eclairs at three stand-alone stores in Paris, but these are missing in the Lafayette store. Each cream-filled éclair nestles on its paper case, colourful yet uniform, and delicious.

At the Lafayette store, a serried row of giant eclair images forms a graphic backdrop on a wide light-box behind the simple wooden counter, with space for a sink and supply of paper napkins. To the side of the counter are stacked caramels, toffees, sweets, and jars of caramel. The store also offers its own éclair-shaped ice cream.

L’éclair de Genie has announced its next store will be in Japan. It will be interesting to see if it does well here: Japan has a great selection of its own tasty desserts, as any visitor will attest. If it succeeds, a global eclair event is a certainty.