Thursday, December 26, 2013


This post is very delayed! My sister and I spent Thanksgiving in Paris. She is studying abroad in Madrid, and couldn't come home for the holiday, so I decided to go to her. Before I even booked my plane ticket or hotel, I had already booked restaurants for our meals.
The airplane food wasn't too exciting on the way there or back, so I will spare you the details on that. I flew Air Canada, and the lounges were not that impressive either. The lounge in La Guardia did have mini packages of oreo cookies, which I gorged myself on because my flight was delayed. I will say the economy class seats on my Air Canada flight were great - in seat entertainment, AND...wait for it...a USB charger in the seat as well. It is unclear to me why United hasn't figured this amenity out.

As soon as I landed and met my sister at our Air BnB place, I left my bags and we dashed out the door to find a croissant place. This was easy. We found a place on the corner of our block. It wasn't the best croissant, but we had to start somewhere. Je voudrais un croissant, s'il vous plait!

We quickly finished our petit dejeneurs and started our own walking tour. And within just a few blocks, we found a choux a la creme store named Popeline. We decided to share one, for if we stopped for a snack every few blocks, we may not make it out of our arrondissement. We shared the chocolat au lait, and it was light and very tasty.

After walking for another 10 minutes, we decided we should stop for lunch. See, I wasn't joking about stopping every few blocks for food. We saw a creperie, but I decided to check my foursquare before we went in. Well, turns out we were very close to a falafel place my colleague recommended: L'as Du Fallafel. This was a take-out place, with an option for dining in, but my sister and I quickly picked up two falafels and ate them in the street while deciding where we would go next. This was just the sustenance we needed to keep us trekking along Avenue Montaigne.

As you may have guessed from the size of this thing, I was a mess after. I had that white sauce all over my jacket, cabbage in my hair, and the spicy red sauce all over my fingers. The mess was worth every bite.

After some shopping on the Champs Elysees, we found Laduree. I am very familiar with the one on the UES in NYC (it is right next door to my beloved store), but we couldn't help ourselves. We had to stop in and take photos and get a box of sixteen. 

Our dinner that evening was at La Dame du Pic.  Unfortunately, this was unremarkable in every.single.way. The food was mediocre at best, service was dismal, and definitely no value. For example, the wine pairing was 45 euros. We had a five course meal, and three pairings, which is okay. But the annoying thing was, all the pairings came from the by the glass menu, and those were 9-12 euros, so we could have just ordered off that! The only cool thing is that when we got our wine pairing, our sommelier asked us to guess what wine we were drinking. I correctly guessed our first glass, a sancerre. For our courses, the sauces were all very good, the meat that accompanied them not so much. The red mullet and oysters were too fishy smelling. the chicken was actually tasty comparatively speaking. I wouldn't recommend coming here! 

The next day, my sister and I went champagne tasting in Reims. This was very easy to do on our own - we took the train to Reims, and then took taxis to various houses. In a day, I think we covered about four houses. For lunch, we decided to check out Le Jardin, since it was within walking distance from Veuve Clicquot. You definitely need a reservation for Le Jardin, we just got really lucky with grabbing two seats at the bar.

After settling into our seats, we were given a cucumber-ish amuse bouche. 

While researching champagne houses, I had come across Ruinart, and read that it was one of the best tours. Unfortunately, the house is closed for renovations, so since we missed it this time around, we figured we would at least try a bottle here before leaving. Oooh la la, c'est incroyable!

After our beverage selection was settled, we were able to focus on the other stuff: lunch. We started with a foie gras in citronella sauce. I didn't find the citronella sauce to be all that memorable, but, of course, the foie gras melted in my mouth. Hom nom nom nom nom.  

We also ordered a side of mushrooms to share.

This sirloin was truly a masterpiece. Probably one of the BEST steaks I've had to date.

My heart is racing with excitement as I stare at this photo. Look! Medium rare perfection! Ahhhhhh! What better way to spend a Friday afternoon other than with bubbles and a medium rare steak? I'm not sure if there is a better way to spend a Friday afternoon, actually.

Our dinner that evening was at Spring. It really made up for our meal at La Dame Du Pic. The servers at Spring were very friendly and attentive and the food was out of this world. We also opted for a wine pairing, all of which were fantastic. One of the pairings included my most recent obsession, Tokaji, a Hungarian wine.

Spring was one of those places in which you did not get a menu when you sat down. Instead, amazing dishes were just whisked to your table straight from the kitchen. I was waiting to finish this post until I received the menu, and I haven't yet...but if you are ever in Paris, do not skip this place!

One thing I did not take any photos of was the bread and butter. This was like culinary crack. We couldn't get enough - the butter was perfectly salted, at room temperature, and decadent. I wanted to buy some French butter as a souvineer to take home (something about pasturizing? I'm not sure), but we forgot to look on our last day. Anyways, on to our courses.

This was quail. God I love eating. And wine pairings. I love those too.

This was foie gras. I love foie gras because when prepared this way, it really just melts in your mouth.

I'm a little trashed and now it is time for dessert.

On Saturday, my sister and I had read about a place named West Country Girl for amazing crepes. Off we went, only to find out that it was closed. Boo. So, we found another bakery and I had a croissant, and she had a quiche. 

Lo and behold, we found another creperie after we ate our quiche and croissant. And of course, we went for it.

Then we went to Printemps and that is a story for another day. What? 12% VAT back. 

Our last stop on Saturday afternoon was Cafe Creme in the 3rd arrondissement. We didn't know anything about this place, but once we sat down, we realized that burgers were THE thing to order here. 

I wouldn't normally have a burger place on my list of places to try in Paris, as I thought burgers were an American thing, but look at this medium rare beauty! Bravo, Cafe Creme!

We didn't have dinner plans for Saturday evening, as we were going to see Cut Copy. I figured we could try our luck at Le Chateaubriand (open seating after 9 or 9:30pm), or Le Dauphin. Well, our concert went until 11pm, and we couldn't figure out where to eat as everything was closing down. On our way home, we found a random restaurant near our apartment and decided to take what we could get. Wow, the food was surprisingly fantastic! We ordered foie gras macaroni and french onion soup. This place isn't going to be on any food blogs or anything anytime soon, but I was surprised that the food was so tasty considering it looked kind of kitschy.

Yes, that is foie gras on top of my mac n cheese.

On Sunday morning, my sister and I ubered over to Charles De Gaulle and ate our remaining Laduree macarons enroute.

I love Paris! I can't wait to go back for a longer period of time and just eat my way through the city.
Next on my list are definitely places such as Chateaubriand, Frenchie's, Septime, L'Astrance, perhaps. I also want to spend more time in Epernay and Burgandy. Who wants come with me next time? 


Naina said...

oh my gosh! That pink boulangerie is my bakery from when I lived in Paris for a summer! But I had completely forgotten where it was--do you remember?!

Hom Nom! said...

Oh wow! Yes, it was on Ave. Parmentier and Rue Oberkampf near the M3 at Parmentier!