10/21/2013 10:54 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Paris Journal VI: Pierre Herme


Have you ever wanted to smash the display case in a museum and eat a masterpiece or some remnant of antiquity? You can gratify this desire at Pierre Herme, the chain of upscale chocolate shops in Paris. Only the French could come up with a way of wedding Keats' "unravish'd bride of quietness," of serving up his Grecian urn. Try the Statuette Precolumbienne, the Masque de Danse Mayan or the Masque Kenayata, Kayan, Borneo. For a mere 67 Euros you can eat the chocolate version all of them. After a hard day at the Louvre, being tantalized by all manner of artworks that it's impossible to touch, you can literally devour these replicas of the past. Of course, when it comes to beauty and Paris there are other approaches to physical gratification. Les Chandelles is one of the famous sex clubs, where one can enjoy both the degustatory pleasures of French cuisine with the carnal delights of the French past-time of libertinage. Libertinage is a practice going back to the l6th century, where the enjoyment of fine foods and wines is a prelude to your party's enjoyment of each other. But it's hard to get in and if you want to make it by the bouncers, you'd better make sure you know one of the regulars like Dominique Strauss-Kahn.

{This was originally posted to The Screaming Pope, Francis Levy's blog of rants and reactions to contemporary politics, art and culture}