this is how we do

husband’s friend: “how was Paris?”

husband: “it was awesome.”

husband’s friend: “did you eat the sh*t out of that place?”

yes. yes we did. here, in no particular order, are some of our more memorable eats (and drinks):

1. Select Cafe

maybe it’s because it was our first night in town. maybe it’s because of the pleasant conversation we had with the man dining alone beside us. maybe it’s because the steak frites was exactly what i needed for my first dinner in Paris. either way, this unassuming and yummy little Montmartre brasserie on the Rue des Martyrs was the perfect way to kick off our gluttonous rampage through the city.

2. Le Miroir

an understated Montmartre bistro with delicious wines and a three course pre-fixe that makes it easy to see why this place is a local favorite. their boutique wine shop across the street is another must, crammed full of organic and small-batch varietals, and a knowledgeable proprietor who delights in delving into the particular pedigree of each bottle.

3. La Part des Anges

sometimes you just know. we passed by this small Montmartre eatery every night of our first week. and every night its ten cozy tables were packed with a crowd of easy going locals casually conversing over well-sated bellies. online reviews confirmed my suspicions: this was the place for our final Montmartre dinner. the heart-y duck and veal stews and wines by the glass (the chateau st. martin bronzinelle was a delicious discovery) hit the spot, as did the accompanying convivial vibe.

4. La Boulangerie

if it weren’t for a gregarious and stylish shopkeeper by the name of Isabelle we would have never known about this wonderful french bistro in the heart of the 20th arrondissement. sure, it’s a trek if you’re staying anywhere remotely central. but the tango of delicate and robust flavors and deliciously long whiskey menu that await will have you wrapped up in a blanket of warm fuzzy so quickly, you’ll forget all about those three metro transfers.

5. La Grande Epicerie de Paris

well, i’ll put it this way: if we had never discovered this upscale and ridiculously stocked urban fare market in the ground floor of Le Bon Marche, our wallets would have been the better for it. but what fun would that have been? plus, there’s no better place to gather the ingredients for a perfect lunch in the park.

6. The Hemingway Bar

sure the cocktails are over priced and the crowd a tad stuffy. but this tiny leather and wood clad lounge tucked in the back of the Ritz makes quite possibly the best Manhattan on the face of the planet. and, in case you missed it, it’s a tiny leather and wood clad lounge tucked in the back of the Ritz.

7. Lao Tseu

who would have guessed that France would be the place to finally get good chinese? the food at this Saint Germain bistro was fresh, flavorable, and refreshingly free of the north american syndrome known as more sauce = more taste. that said, if i’d had the option to supersize our order of szechuan pork, i wouldn’t have said no. their dessert menu also had possibly the best ice cream i’ve ever tasted in my life.

8. Le Marché Biologique (de Blvd Raspail)

we happened upon the all organic version of this farmer’s market on a Sunday, but it also runs as a traditional market throughout the week. to say the offerings here are bountiful would be the understatement of the century. from the fresh roasted rotisserie chickens and mountains of stinky cheese and cured meats to the trays of homemade pasta, basket upon basket of baked goods and fresh produce spilling out of every possible corner, this place is a food and cooking connoisseur’s (pardon the expression) wet dream. it’s also a one way ticket to brokedom if you’re not careful (we managed to spend $35 on a roast chicken). but, oh, what a glorious way to go out.

9. Boulangerie Gosselin

two words: chocolate eclair.

 

and, finally, places we didn’t get to try, but will next time, so help us god:

1. Quai-Quai – tasty looking french menu, great interior design.

2. La Divina Commedia – delicious Italian fare for those non-duck moods.

3. Le Grand Colbert – as classic as classic French brasseries get.

4. La Maison Angelina – for all of your chocolatey needs.

5. Rose Bakery – a popular bakery and sandwich shop easily identified by the line out the door.

6. Le Pantruche – a cherished (and well priced) locals spot. make a reservation (we, obviously, did not).

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