If you leave Marseille, go along the beach and take yourself to Calanque, in a secret idyllic corner you’ll find a strange little...
A wave of softness just settled rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis: Peonies Paris, the flower and coffee shop. For the food lovers, there is everything there: delicious drinks, fresh juices, cakes, cookies and rolls to die for – handmade, of course. The flowers are the bonus. Clémentine Lévy, the beautiful smile behind this hybrid project, loves them. Every day, the former host for Clique makes herself the bouquets, delicate mixes of foliage and wild plants. When we went and visit her, the cakes were being prepared and their smells coming from the kitchen were making our mouths water. At Peonies Paris, they all mix into a unique and particular fragrance. Story of a sweet moment in this pretty boutique flooded with light.
Peonies Paris – 81 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis, 75010 Paris
Clémentine, can you introduce yourself?
I arrived in Paris when I was 20 in order to finish my communication degree, and then everything went very fast. Since then, I have done a lot of different things: model, DJ, host, and this year, for Peonies Paris, I even had a barista training with the coffee merchant Coutume and a florist training as well.
What is Peonies Paris?
It is a flower and coffee shop. So we sell coffees, hot and cold drinks, small things to eat, both savoury and sweet, and finally bouquets of wild flowers I make myself. I go to Rungis twice a week and I work in the workshop in the basement of the boutique.
It is my favourite flower. It exists only two months during the year, between the end of April and the end of July.
From what did the idea of a flower and coffee shop come from?
I have always wanted to open a café or a tearoom. I had had this idea in mind for a long time. The dream of a little girl! I really wanted to have my own boutique, and to welcome my friends. The idea of a coffee shop came right away, since I myself go a lot to this kind of place. Then, flowers are something I have been loving since my childhood and I really wanted to share this with people.
What type of bouquets do you make?
I wanted to offer something a bit different. Here, you won’t find any rose, or maybe some roses from a garden, but the idea is that there won’t be any classic flowers such as orchids. I make bouquets of wild flowers or of flowers from the gardens. 90% of the flowers I use come from France. There is a quite recent label, Fleurs de France, which has been existing in Rungis since 2015 and which enables to buy flowers only to French producers while respecting the seasons.
And during the winter, how does it go?
In France, the suppliers who respect this label offer something else. For example, foliage, with despite everything very coloured things, with small berries, small buds, and heather. There are a lot of possibilities!
Can you tell us about the coffee shop part?
We offer a lot of different things. Everything is handmade and vegetarian, with savoury and sweet things. A cook makes the cakes every day. For lunch, we have a menu: vegetarian rolls with a filling which changes all the time, and also a salad, still with seasonal produces. The rest of the day, we have cakes and granola. As for the junk food side, there is the cheddar sandwich with spinach shoots, made especially for us: a black Nordic bread but made as a white bread, very moist! In terms of drinks, I had already tasted the Coutume coffees, which are excellent. So it was logical to work with them. They loved the project straightaway and gave me very good pieces of advice. They offered me a floral and very tasty creation!
Did you make the decoration of the boutique? Please tell us about it!
Eloise Bosredon, an architect, helped me a lot. She is the one who made Cyril Lignac’s chocolate shop. For Peonies Paris, we worked together and with Romain Chirat, my artistic director. She had the idea of mixing green and pink, the two main colours. Then, we hunted for a lot of small objects and worked with designers we like, such as Hay and the designer Julie Lansom, who makes ceiling lights.
Do you have other projects to come?
We just opened, so now I just want to focus on Peonies Paris. I started making my own jam, still with organic fruits and flowers, and I would like to develop the groceries part. I also really want to create a series of clothes with our logo!
wanted to offer something a bit different. Here, you won’t find any rose, or maybe some roses from a garden, but the idea is that there won’t be any classic flowers such as orchids.
Credits : Eve Campestrini @thesocialitefamily