Article by Melissa Ladd (English & français).
It’s no secret that coffee culture has made a big comeback in Paris with the opening of many little spots that aim to serve artisan coffee and to bring back the art of the barista. It’s also no secret that the expat communities have embraced these establishments as well. But we are also seeing the Parisians and French communities release their bitter Café Richard gulped in a rush at a Parisian brasserie counter, for the more indulgent idea of lounging at a coffee shop for a while. It’s a much more delightful way to savor the flavor and appreciate the different blends. For me it brings back many memories of my youthful days spent in Monterey California where coffee shops and flavor exploration was an almost daily agenda item.
Ce n’est plus un secret que la « coffee culture » est revenue en force à Paris avec l’ouverture de plein d’adresses qui veulent servir du café artisan et faire revivre l’art du barista. Ce n’est plus non plus un secret que la communauté d’expats ont accueilli cette culture les bras ouverts. Mais on voit également les communautés Parisians et Français laché leur café Richard amer qui se prennait d’un trait en hâte au comptoir d’une brasserie, pour s’intéresser à la perspective voluptueuse de se prélasser longuement dans un bar à café. C’est une manière nettement plus agréable à savourer l’arôme et apprécier les différents mélanges de café. Pour moi, c’est un renvoie joliement nostalgique à mes années de jeunesse passés à Monterey en Californie où l’exploration du café et des bars à café faisait partie de l’agenda quasi-quotidien. Read more →
I was so happy to be invited by Le Meurice for a tea time tasting of their pastries, which are renowned, and rightly so given the dedication to French excellence in pastry arts and cuisine that is promoted by this Dorchester Collection hotel.
But an article about tea time at Le Meurice will no doubt spark a conversation about the recent media frenzy over the boycott against hotels owned by the sultan of Brunei, a small sovereign nation that is pocketed on a Malaysian coastline. Anna Wintour and all the celebrities have a very valid point in boycotting hotels owned by this sultan who is integrating sharia law into his country’s customs. I IN NO WAY SUPPORT SHARIA LAW IN ANY WAY. These laws are intrinsically homophobic, misogynist and inhumane. I think radical leaders like Hassanal Bolkiah should be given a taste of their very own oppression and discrimination. I support Anna Wintour and the fashion industry boycotting the Dorchester Collection hotels. But… I also support the dedicated and open minded professionals that work in and for these hotels. These people have nothing to do with the garish laws implemented in Brunei, nor its sultan’s opinions or religious inclination. These people who work in hotels such as Le Meurice, uphold the standards of luxury and tolerance of people from all walks of life. The wonderful people who work for Le Meurice support French standards of business, liberté, égalité, fraternité. I find it sad that these people are the ones being in essence hurt by this sultan’s decisions, and it isn’t fair for them at all. They do an amazing job of running a hotel with high French standards. I do hope the public opinion can put enough pressure on the sultan for him to retract his decision for sharia law without putting in danger the jobs of those who work in his hotels.
Now… can we talk about pastries!?! Read more →
This is a super easy, and incredibly delicious summer salad that I whipped up the other day. Now that I can eat dairy again, I have been putting cheese on almost everything. And I had this feta in the fridge that
needed wanted to be eaten. I grabbed a few items that were sitting around for a fun colorful palette of food. Read more →
I headed off to the Marais the other day with friends Frank and Patricia, for a little indulgence. Our destination was the very talked-about very blogged-about Éclaire de Génie; a little concept store éclair shop, created by Christophe Adam, that is making the foodie scene turn their heads from the ever-famous over-instagramed (yes, I’m guilty) macaron. The éclairs are about twice the price of a single macaron, but they are at least twice as big, if not three times, and they are quite a bit more complex. With a whole slew of flavors to chose from, with eye-pleasing decorations and colors, these new sweet bites may very well take over the throne that the macaron has claimed for the past handful of years. Read more →
Coretta is a restaurant that will forever mark an amazing change in my life, the reintroduction of dairy into my diet. For about ten years now I have nixed dairy from my intake, and at all the restaurants I visit, I must always inquire about the lactose contents of the menu and carefully select accordingly which often limits my choices to a sad one or two dishes. Often, the kitchen has to make special dishes for me, if they are in the mood. But recently, I have daringly tested out my dairy intolerance, because, they say that every ten years or so your body chemistry changes. It all started with a Pierre Hermé salted caramel cream macaron that DIDN’T make me feel sick. I was astonished. I made a few more attempts at Pierre Hermé macarons, and a couple bites of friends’ desserts to test the theory. It seemed to have some truth to it. Coretta was the first restaurant where I dared to have a whole dish that contained a little bit of cream in the sauce… A revelation of flavor came over me and I remembered what amazing food can taste like! Butter and cream and cheese really do make a difference.
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I used to head to the Sugarplum Cake Shop often, but now I tend to frequent Laurel Sanderson’s new place Treize. But the 5th was really where I created some of my cherished memories as a student in Paris, like most students do. It’s a very student oriented neighborhood, and my second year here, I lived in a tiny little chambre de bonne on rue Laromiguière, just a few steps away from place Contrescarpe and rue Moufftard. I have much nostalgia of that year and so I return to rue Mouffetard with a light heart and a smile on my face.
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I am going to tell you about a wonderful new spot in the Haute Marais quarter. Open since Novemebr 2012, this place offers something rare in the old parts of Paris : space. It’s called Beaucoup, and it has beaucoup d’espace for a Paris restaurant. It’s the third Parisian restaurant by the duo Ludovic and Julien. They seem to have a knack for opening trendy chic spots. But what I find so delightful about Beaucoup, besides it’s décor, menu and atmosphere… is that it’s right around the corner from the well known spot Merci. To me it seems to be the obvious suite to the installation of Merci. Merci… Beaucoup. And I hope someone opens a place just down the street from Beaucoup, and calls it « De Rien »! It could be a cute little place that serves up something different every day according to what they have available. It would be like they are making something from nothing! Get it? « De rien »? Every meal there would be a surprise! But… I digress with my little Paris restaurant fantasy. Read more →
In my (unadmitted) quest to discover all the fun restaurants in the Batignolles quarter, I was able to suggest Le Club des 5 when planning a dinner out with Chéri and our artist friend Barbara. I had walked by it many times and it has such a fun delightful interieur that seems to dram me in, that I couldn’t wait any longer, so I insisted.
I wasn’t disappointed!
I do chose restaurants based upon décor and ambiance first, and food second. I feel that just as food presentation is important, so are your surroundings and the decorum in which you eat. I can’t eat in a messy room, for example. Read more →
After my lovely little tea time with Quinn, I found myself walking up rue des Martyrs in the 9th wandering aimlessly on a sunny April afternoon. There’s a little place called Café Marlette. It has been blogged about by many, and as I was looking for a cozy spot to sit and chill by myself, it just appeared in front of me without me even trying o look for it. So of course I knew I had to plop myself down there.
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