Like I said in the 1st post in this series (on Berlin), 2011 was filled with lots of foodie adventures.
I made some fun discoveries traveling, yet many of my favorite finds were right here in Paris. From restaurants and wine bars to markets and vegetables, here are my top picks for the year.
Le vin qui chante (“the singing wine”)
Sebastien found this one for Valentine’s Day, though we didn’t celebrate on the actual day – which I recommend! Whenever we go out in Paris on the real Valentine’s Day we’re confronted with too many people, overwhelmed waiters and set-menus – none of which lead to the ideal dining experience. Instead, we find it better to go to a nice restaurant on any other evening in February.
Our meal at Le vin qui chante was excellent and we highly recommend it for a special night out. I enjoyed the “menu gourmand”: three courses, each paired with a glass of wine.
Address: 52, rue Sainte Anne (2e)
Telephone: 01 40 20 03 70
Metro: Auber, Quatre Septembre or Pyramides
Favorite Wine Bar
A hidden-away bar just north of the Marais that specializes in wines from the Languedoc region in France. Very good tapenade and cheeses to accompany your wine.
Addresse: 62, rue des Gravilliers (3e)
Telephone: 09 52 07 80 60
Metro: Arts et Métiers
Favorite Crepe Stand
La Creperie du Comptoir
This is the most “gourmet” crepe stand in Paris, and offers both savory galettes (buckwheat) and sweet crepes. You may take crepes to go or stand inside at the counter for wine and tapas.
Address: 3, carrefour de l’Odéon (6e)
Telephone: 01 44 27 07 97
Favorite Farmers’ Market
Marché biologique des Batignolles
100% organic! Excellent quality. Low-key, down-to-earth atmosphere.
When: Saturdays 9am-3pm
Where: 34, boulevard des Batignolles (17e)
Metro: Place de Clichy
Favorite Vegetable Discovery
Kohlrabi, also known as German turnip or turnip cabbage, is easy to find at Parisian farmers’ markets. It’s a member of the cabbage family and great eaten raw. I like to grate it into lentil salads for example.
Favorite Vegetable Re-discovered
Choux de Bruxelles
Brussel sprouts are especially abundant in the winter months. I eat them like popcorn! Cut them in half, sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper, and bake until they are brown and crispy. This is my version of crispy kale.
Quinoa and chestnut bread from Naturalia health food store. I like it toasted and smeared with salted butter.
Le Moulin du Pivert’s Spelt biscottes (without palm oil)
“Biscottes” are little crunchy toasts often eaten for breakfast in France. Finding anything without palm oil is difficult these days (yes, including something as simple as breakfast toasts!), thus I was happy to find these. They’re sold in health food stores.
This is a creamy blue cheese from the Auvergne region. It is amazing in an endive and walnut salad.
Favorite “I can’t believe I ate that!”
Escargots with butter and garlic at Chez Chartier
I know, I really did eat snails!