Sunday, December 5, 2010

Paris - The Foodie Mecca

The whole cafe scene in Paris is a culture all of its own.  You sit down, order a drink, and watch life pass by.  Good luck trying to get a check/bill (AKA l'addition) after asking two or three times for it (it was amusing the first few times, but my New York patience ran thin).  A 15% tip is already included in the price of food/drinks which would explain the slow service.  Aside from that, we had a number of great meals.  Here is the rundown:

Day 1
- Laduree
- Malakoff
- Chez Andre

Day 2
- L'Alsace
- Symposium

Day 3
- La Flamme Cafe
- La Bonne Franquette
- Tutti Sensi
- Le Mere Catherine
- La Galette Des Moulins
- Le Relais De L'Entrecote

Day 4
- Le Pure Cafe
- Amorino
- Les Deux Magots
- Le Flamme Cafe

Day 5
- Bostrot de la Tour Eiffel
- Boulangerie
- Le Fumoir
- Le Grand Colbert

Day 6 
- Laduree
- Le Comptoir
- Le Relais De L'Entrecote

My main discovery in Paris were macaroons from Laduree.  I've had coconut macaroons before (which are no where close to related), but these were addictive from the first bite.  The worst part about it is that they make them in every possible flavor: vanilla, pistachio, raspberry, dark chocolate, lemon, etc. Luckily, I was able to find them in NYC at Bouchon Bakery (the pumpkin macaroons can inspire a new religion).
You can't go to France without eating frog legs (its like going to Spain and not having tapas).  And guess what?  They actually taste like chicken wings with less meat.  We had them at Le Grand Colbert (where they filmed Somethings Got To Give) and they were pretty good in their sauce (I practically drained the sauce with the bread).  The veal stew was amazing there too, which is surprising because you would think it would be a tourist trap. 
Same thing goes for french toast - you can't go to France and not have it (no matter how clique it sounds).  Laduree (again) made an incredibly perfect fluffy french toast - without cinnamon or eggs.

My favorite place was Le Relais De L'Entrecote.  There is always a big line outside, but it passes quickly.  The brilliance of the place is that they only serve one thing: steak au poivre.  You sit down and they ask you how you want your steak.  They serve you a salad and then comes the best part: 2 servings of crispy fries with steak and an amazing pepper sauce.  The concept is so simple, but if you do two things perfect, you can't go wrong.    

Notable places that I wanted to go to, but didn't have advanced reservations: L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon, Du Pain et Des Idee (closed because of holiday), Aux Lyonnais, and Frenchie.
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