If you’ve been in France during the Christmas period, you might have noticed that every pâtisserie has a selection of cakes that look like a big piece of wood. The bûche de Noël (the Christmas log) is a typically French dessert, only really eaten during the holidays. The tradition is very old and is shared by most francophone countries. Before Christianity, people used to burn a log for days—starting on the 24th of December until the end of the year—as an offering to the gods, in the hope of having a good harvest the following year.

white buche de noel on the left and a photo of the seine paris on the right
Top: left: @jeffonline / right: Hôtel Barrière. Above: left: @baked.expectation / right: Anthony Delanoix

Now the tradition has changed, but the log continues to be part of French Christmas traditions. The good news is that, nowadays, the log is made of delicious cake, and it doesn’t always look like a log.

In Paris, chefs take the making of the bûche seriously, changing the look and flavors every year, striving to make them more and more spectacular. We researched the most gorgeous, and tasty, bûches to buy in Paris this Christmas so you can bring a real show-stopper to your parties.

on the left is a white and brown bûche de noël in the shape of a snowy mountain. On the right is a photo of the louvre in the snow in winter.
Left: Maison Lenôtre / Right: @theglitteringunknown

The Peninsula Paris – Chef David Bizet et Cheffe Anne Coruble

Loyal to tradition, Michelin-starred chefs David Bizet and Anne Coruble decided to celebrate their Norman roots with their Christmas bûche called Racine, revisiting the memory of the apple tree logs burning in the fireplace when they were little. The result is a decadent smoky log, deliciously filled with chocolate and caramel.

Bûche de noël by The Peninsula Paris in the shape of a brown and red log
The Peninsula Paris

Hôtel Barrière – Chef Christophe Adam

Maple syrup and pecan nut praline are the stars of this bûche. The creation is called Monts et Merveilles (Mountains and Marvels) and really delivers what the name suggests. These mountains covered by a white chocolate glaze constituting the most inviting dessert you will see this Christmas.

Hôtel Molitor – Chef Benoît Gressent x Nebay

If you are into art, you’ll love the bûche that street artist NEBAY as created with chef Benoît Gressent. Caramelized apples, lemon and chocolate will delight your palate, while the colorful look of this dessert will give your guests something to talk about for the rest of the season.

a colourful bûche de noël created by street artist NEBAY as created with Chef Benoît Gressent who is pictured on the right side
Hôtel Molitor – Geraldine Marten

Maison Lenôtre – Chef Jean-Christophe Jeanson

Inspired by the mountains of Provence, chef Jean-Christophe Jeanson created a double-faced mountain: on one side, a shiny chocolate glaze, while the other side is covered by sugary snow to celebrate the season. Candied mandarin, chocolate, and praline are served with a mandarin and olive oil sorbet—a Christmas dream.

Hôtel Lutetia – Chef Nicolas Guercio

Since the only limit is your imagination, this year, chef Nicolas Guercio at the Lutetia decided to abandon the log to create an incredibly convincing-looking pair of shoes. This might look strange, but it’s actually a nostalgic take on another French tradition. The day before Christmas, kids usually find mandarins in their slippers, so the chef decided to serve the same tradition to grown-ups, swapping the slippers for elegant shoes. Needless to say, mandarin is the main ingredient here.

on the left is a box with a chocolate bûche de noël inside and on the right is a bûche de noël in the shape of a red shoes with an orange in the shoe
Left: Maison Lenôtre / Right: Hôtel Lutetia

Written by Alessia Armenise for HiP Paris. Looking to travel? Check out Plum Guide and our Marketplace for fabulous vacation rentals in Paris, France or Italy. Looking to rent long or short term, or buy in France? Ask us! We can connect you to our trusted providers for amazing service and rates or click here. Looking to bring France home to you or to learn online or in person? Check out our marketplace shop and experiences.


Alessia Armenise

Alessia is a writer and creative based in Paris. After a few years working in London, she moved back to Paris and now writes freelance for media and brands, specialising in eco-luxury, slow travel and sustainability. Her work has been featured in Stylist, Milk Magazine and Grazia France among others. She also runs a sustainability and slow living focused website called Pretty Slow and hosts a podcast called Pretty Good Business.


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