Our Guide to the Marché des Enfants Rouges

Behind an old iron gate in the 3rd arrondissement lies the surprising sprawl of the Marché des Enfants Rouges, the oldest market in Paris at 400 years old. While an exciting destination for foodies – you have your pick of Japanese bento boxes, Lebanese sandwiches, fresh pressed juice, gluten-free brownies, towers of Moroccan couscous, buckwheat crêpes and more – the choices and lines can be overwhelming, and not every stand is equally excellent. Read below for our tips to navigating the market and the food for which we think it’s worth braving the masses. Continue reading Our Guide to the Marché des Enfants Rouges

Snapshot of the Paris Cocktail Scene

The second annual Paris Cocktail Week is just around the corner, running from January 23-30. The festival has rallied more than 50 bars throughout the city and features classes from spirits companies and well-known bars, parties, and a special cocktail and mocktail at discounted prices at each of the participating locations. We’ve refreshed Our Guide to Cocktail Bars just in time for you to take advantage of the celebration, and highlighted our favorites in Five Great Cocktail Bars.
Continue reading Snapshot of the Paris Cocktail Scene

Five Great Galettes des Rois

Let’s all raise our glasses to Gaspard, Balthazar and Melchior – the three kings who traveled to meet the newborn baby Jesus more than 2000 years ago. Their visit (Epiphany) is commonly understood as the inspiration for galette des rois or kings’ cake, a delicious treat that the French consume on or around January 6 Continue reading Five Great Galettes des Rois

Bringing chocolate home from France

The French have had a love affair with chocolate since 1615, when Anne of Austria (confusingly, actually Spanish) married Louis XIII of France and packed cocoa beans for drinking chocolate in her Paris-bound valise. 400 years later, French chocolates are some of the finest in the world and among the best souvenirs to take home. Continue reading Bringing chocolate home from France

What life was really like during the week after the Paris attacks

Contrary to most news reports, Paris is not on lockdown. The city’s residents, and especially those of us who live, work and play on the city’s east side, are shaken up. But together we’re getting through it. Here is an incomplete attempt to show what that looked like during the week after the attacks on November 13th.  Continue reading What life was really like during the week after the Paris attacks

Havens of hospitality: Small acts of heroism during the attacks

“Be not inhospitable to strangers, lest they be angels in disguise,” is painted above a doorframe in the bookstore and café Shakespeare & Co. It’s a motto that the iconic address certainly took to heart on Friday evening when Paris went into lockdown following the most deadly attacks on French soil since World War II. Shakespeare & Co’s staff sheltered roughly 20 people during the lockdown, many of whom ended up spending the night among the bookshelves and coffee machines. Owner Sylvia Whitman, however, is reluctant to be singled out as a hero. “This wasn’t exceptional,” she insists. “There were many places that closed with customers inside.”

Sadly, she’s right – it wasn’t exceptional. Many shops, restaurants and bars ended up sheltering patrons for hours on end. What was exceptional were the actions of staff who went above and beyond the call of duty on Friday evening to ensure that guests were taken care of. Continue reading Havens of hospitality: Small acts of heroism during the attacks

Patrick Roger: Sculpture with Taste

The Rodin Museum re-opens today after a long renovation, its lobby featuring a sweet new installation: A copy of the sculptor’s famous Monument to Balzac, standing nearly 4 meters high, and made entirely from chocolate. With this new installation – entitled “La Sculpture a du Gôut”, or “Sculpture with Taste” – Patrick Roger, the French chocolatier most famous for his giant chocolate orangutans, will prove that he isn’t monkeying around.  Continue reading Patrick Roger: Sculpture with Taste

À L’Étoile d’Or Re-Opens After Explosion

There’s nothing new at A l’Étoile d’Or, and that’s perfect.

Rarely is “it’s just like it always was” a compliment, but a delighted customer at the shop’s re-opening this week meant it as high praise. The iconoclastic and historic candy shop, which features hard-to-find, old-fashioned sweets from throughout France, had been a fixture in Pigalle for over 40 years when, in February 2014, an accidental nearby explosion destroyed the shop and forced its closure. Sweet lovers mourned the loss of unusual candies like the bars of Bernachon chocolates from Lyon (the only spot in Paris to get them) or blackcurrant jellies from Dijon with a liquid center.

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Montreuil: Paris’ Great Escape

Don’t get excited: Paris has no Brooklyn. Due to short-sighted urban planning in mid-century, Paris is cinched into its ring-road, le péripherique, like a dress it wore sixty years ago and never removed. The sheer impracticality of crossing this eternally congested ring-road has long prevented, in les banlieues, development of establishments Parisians might consider destinations. For Parisians, you’re either within city limits, or you’re way, way out.  Continue reading Montreuil: Paris’ Great Escape

Fulgurances Opens a Restaurant

French food magazine Fulgurances has just opened L’Adresse in the trendy neighborhood off the 11th and will be serving dinner four nights a week (Wednesday-Saturday) as part of their new culinary residency program. During a six month stint, partnering guests chefs will have the opportunity to try out running their own restaurant.  Continue reading Fulgurances Opens a Restaurant

Daniel Rose to take on Chez la Vieille & New York

Chez la Vieille occupies an unassuming corner at the intersection of two quiet streets, Bailleul and l’Arbre Sec, between the Louvre and what’s left of Les Halles. It was opened by the formidable Adrienne Biasin back in 1960 and catered – like most restaurants in this neighborhood – to a clientele of workers from the nearby Les Halles market. When the towering iron and glass pavillions were torn down in 1971 and the market was transferred to the sanitary suburb of Rungis, the “old lady’s” place remained as a comfort for locals who were (and still are) mourning the loss of “the belly of Paris.”  Continue reading Daniel Rose to take on Chez la Vieille & New York

Has Gluten-Free Become a Thing in France?

France generally doesn’t tend to fall in for fad diets. The Atkins craze that swept the States in the early 2000s barely made a blip in the Hexagon. The past two years, however, have seen a noticeable rise in restaurants and bakeries that are actively marketing their food as sans gluten, or gluten-free.  Continue reading Has Gluten-Free Become a Thing in France?