Neolith & Cédric Grolet in Paris
Neolith® is found throughout the interior decoration of the very first bakery and pastry shop opened by master pastry chef Cédric Grolet.
When referring to Cédric Grolet, he needs no introduction. As well-known across the world as he is in his native France, this master pastry chef has received praise and accolades from all corners of the culinary profession for his unique approach to pastry making.
Grolet’s painstakingly crafted confections have earned him international repute, particularly his ‘Trompe L’oeil’ desserts, which accurately mimic freshly-picked fruit, and his famous Rubik’s Cube cake.
This creative flair and artistic ambition extend beyond gastronomy, into Cédric’s other great passion, which is interior design. Already having been involved in the design and renovation of his apartment, he wanted to be as hands-on as possible when it came to defining the concept behind his latest project, Cédric Grolet Opéra.
I wanted to work with Neolith again since I had used their materials in many places around my own home. The surfaces are immensely strong and sturdy, they don’t deteriorate and seem as if they have just been installed. This is really important when working on them day after day.Cédric Grolet, Master Pastry Chef.
Opéra is his first stand-alone boutique. It’s located right on Avenue de l’Opéra, in the sophisticated Parisian Gaillon neighborhood. The new place offers a wide range of delicacies from savory fresh sandwiches to artisan chocolates. Plus, the dining room on the first floor has a central bar where diners can see how these special desserts are made right with their own eyes.
In a place like this, the decor just has to be esthetically unique as the perfect backdrop for the chef’s exquisite creations. It also had to be practical and resist all the bustle inherent to a professional kitchen and busy coffee shop.
We wanted to create a sophisticated yet relatively minimalist look - nothing daring or flashy, but rather emphasize different whites, greys and black tones. Everything had to be pleasing to the eye but not so flashy that it would steal people’s attention away from the real focus: our bakers and pastry chefs.Cédric Grolet, Master Pastry Chef.
As soon as visitors enter the 300 m2 premises, they find two very different large counters; one cladded in Iron Frost, to provide contrast with the second darker one, thus highlighting the two sides of the business: the bakery and the pastry shop.
On the first floor, diners can sit and relax while having a look at the variety of choices on the menu which includes both sweet and savory options.
In culinary and retail spaces, maintaining the highest levels of hygiene is vital, not just in the current climate but any time. What’s great about Neolith is you can use strong cleaning agents on it and simply wipe it down, ensuring a sparkling, sanitary surface which still looks fabulous.Cédric Grolet, Master Pastry Chef.
The workspace in the basement, known as the laboratory, is where most of the baking is done behind the scenes. It has also been given the Sintered Stone treatment, as Calacatta can be found on the walls.
This regal look evokes the classic Italian marble traditionally used by pastry chefs in a nod to the artisan work involved all while offering superior performance qualities to the stone it pays homage to.
Neolith surfaces are perfect for pastry making due to the low level of porosity which means less frictions. The great scratch resistance also makes it an ideal surface for some of the most complex techniques we use requiring extremely smooth undamaged surfaces such as tempering chocolate or working with sugar.Cédric Grolet, Master Pastry Chef.
I’ve travelled throughout the world in the last five years sharing my knowledge and training many pastry chefs. My latest project is the opening of a pastry school where I’ll have the opportunity to truly express my philosophy, energy, creativity and aspirations. I’ve built a great relationship with Neolith and am extremely proud of what we have achieved together. I hope to work with them again on this, and all future projects.Cédric Grolet, Master Pastry Chef.