American Laurel Sanderson paved the way for creative contemporary cafés on the Left Bank when she opened the first incarnation of Treize Bakery in 2013. She continues to delight both Parisian and foreign palates with inventive Southern-inspired dishes, now served at a new location across Luxembourg Gardens. Treize au Jardin is both restaurant and tea salon, an inviting and whimsical space perfect for lunch, brunch, apéro or un petit café and decadent dessert en terrace.
Hailing from Charleston, Laurel came to France her junior year to study abroad and had one goal: learn French. She landed in the small eastern city of Besançon, where she carried on her French studies at the local university. Small-town France is different from Paris and the ready-made foods she missed from home were staunchly missing from the supermarché shelves. Therefore, the only solution to satisfy her cravings was to make them from scratch, using her grandmother’s recipe book as a guide. This new quest was accentuated by the local people’s passion for food, even amongst her fellow student friends, a spell which she too would quickly fall under.
Degree in hand, Laurel was meant to return home after a quick stopover in Paris. Over twenty years, a husband, and two kids later, she’s still here and her zealousness for great, home-cooked food has only grown. Her baking went outside of the house when she started making birthday cakes for the staff at her husband’s bar. This led to making wedding cakes, and then gradually everything fell into place for her very own bakery café.
Although it was hidden in a charming courtyard on rue Saint-Pères, word quickly got around about this special cozy place with its incredible savory pies, perfect Southern biscuits, and to-die-for desserts. At only 40 square meters and 19 seats, the café eventually outgrew its baking dish and needed a bigger venue, an exciting venture achieved with her new business partner Kaysa. It took a year and a half to find the right space and seal the deal on the second venue, but anyone visiting the new and improved Treize au Jardin will agree that they succeeded at their mission.
With its mismatched-comfy furniture on the sunny terrace, eclectic rustic-chic interior, and uber-friendly welcome from their staff — who count over ten nationalities — guests instantly feel at home. The much larger space still retains the homey feel of the first Treize thanks to its layout and intimate seating. Laurel and Kaysa aim to keep the food authentic, with a shout out to Southern American cuisine and an eye to current Paris and international trends, including gluten-free options and virtually all organic, locally sourced ingredients. Baked goods at Treize, prepared by two talented new bakers, are of course a high point, whether they are their savory pies made of the loveliest flaky pastry or their legendary carrot cake. Another popular menu item is the baked pecan-crusted chicken (better than fried chicken) and the slow-cooked pulled pork.
Expanded location means expanded hours too: Treize is now open until 9pm seven days a week, making it an original place for an after-work drink. With this in mind, Kaysa has designed an amazing craft cocktail menu, with all homemade ingredients, like their honey-infused bourbon. Brunch is served on both Saturdays and Sundays, and is best enjoyed with a tea pot of gin and tonic. They even have a resident florist who makes beautiful bouquets you can pick up on the fly. No matter the day or time you stop by Treize, you’re bound to have a magical and delicious moment.
Treize au Jardin – 5 Rue de Médicis, 75006 Paris
Written and photographed by Lily Heise for HiP Paris. Looking for a fabulous vacation rental in Paris, London, Provence, Tuscany, Umbria or Liguria? Check out Haven In.