a little goes a long way

At Berthillon, it’s quality over quantity. At first glance, the boule looks measly compared to the gluttonous scoops we Americans are used to seeing perilously balanced upon a cone. The boule here is perfectly perched upon a cone, barely spilling over the diameter of the cone. But while the eyes may be fooled, the tastebuds will quickly realize how indulgent this is. The rich and sweet flavors feel luxurious and like many rich French desserts, you don’t need much to satiate any sweet craving.

Berthillon is legendary in Paris. The tea room occupies a coveted spot on Île Saint-Louis, probably over half the reason anyone detours through the little island. The iconic glacier was first established in 1954 in the very same spot it still occupies today, and is run by the 5th generation of the Berthillon family. Everything is made on site, and while many restaurants and shops around the city sell their products, one must go to Île Saint-Louis to have a full spread of flavors and intricately assembled desserts to choose from. Whether you’re getting a cone to go or dining in the tea room, Berthillon is an obligatory stop in any trip to Paris.

the details

Address31 rue saint louis en l’ile, Paris
Hours10-20h, Wednesday – Sunday, closed Monday and Tuesday 
Price$$ – a single boule cornette goes for €3,50, half liter €10
Aestheticclassic tea room with old school elegance, wood paneling and gold detailing

good to know

Go here for: ice cream cone to go, a sit down dessert

Order this: the salted caramel (caramel au beurre salé) is decadent, or for a more refreshing choice, try the grapefruit (pamplemousse) and blood orange (orange sanguine)

Amount of time to spend: 10-15 minutes for to go (there’s sometimes a wait), or an hour or so for dining in

When to come: any time is a good time, but summer weekends can get a little crowded

Getting here: there aren’t any stations on the tiny island, but it’s a short walk across the bridge from Pont Marie (line 7), and also just a few minutes from Cité (line 4)

Other things to note: The tea room serves coffee, tea, juices, breads and pastries for breakfast in addition to ice cream and desserts.

Last visited: May 2019

Last updated: June 2021

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