Food: Meals in Paris, Part I

by anneMoore on May 3, 2010

Six of us went to Paris last week to eat and shop and look at art. We had no trouble (volcanic ash) coming or going, and while we certainly didn’t plan to benefit from other travelers’ canceled plans, we found it easy to nab reservations at top restaurants, and lines at museums were remarkably short. Given the Greek debt crisis, Parisian salespeople could not have been more lovely.

First new find: Bert’s (4 avenue du president Wilson, and other locations in Paris). Coffees, pastries, sandwiches, salads all freshly made and reasonably priced, served up in a fashionably hip, dark wood setting. Une grande boisson chaude, un jus de fruits frais, un viennoiserie for 5.7 euros? A steal, especially in that neighborhood.

Le petit dejeuner a Carette

Le petit dejeuner a Carette

Another breakfast spot we loved: Carette, 4 place de Trocadero (also at Place des Vosges.) As we stood trying to decide among three spots an older Frenchman passed and said, of Carette: “C’est la meilleure patisserie a Paris.” Sold! We settled into a corner booth and ordered cafe creme, scrambled eggs (soupy: our one gripe), croissants, toasted baguettes. Wonderful service, reasonable prices.

One day for lunch we wandered into St.-Germain-des-Pres. So many places to eat! But one is blessed with sun: the terrace at Les Deux Magots (6 place Saint-Germain-des-Pres). Did we dare? Picasso ate there; so did Hemingway. We feared we’d be eating tourist slop. But the menu looked promising (selection, prices) and a sun-splashed table beckoned.

For our daring we received a perfect lunch in the sun served by a charming, attentive waiter. Fresh, lightly dressed salads, fluffy quiche, warm crusty bread. Adorable honeymooners, also from Chicago, but mostly locals; when Parisians eat at a famous place, it must be good.

Next post: our dinners in Paris.

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