One of my favorite areas in Paris is the Rue des Martyrs neighborhood. Stretching from Saint-Georges up through Pigalle, the vibe is hip-sexy-fun-chic-cool-foodie-trendy. There’s something for everyone, from KB Cafe with their amazing Australian-style coffee, to delicious choux at Popelini, … Continue reading
It was hands-down the best crêpe I’ve had in Paris so far.
The nutella-filled wonder was made by Alain, who has a stand at the Marché des Enfants Rouges (The Market of the Red Children) in the Marais. Merci to my Englishman for having found this gem!
Made popular in the UK by The Little Paris Kitchen’s Rachel Khoo, Alain’s organic stand had a long line of anglophones when the handsome Englishman and I stopped by for our goûter (the 4 o’clock snack in France). People visiting Paris for the weekend made sure to stop by the market and try these gastronomical creations. Not only does Alain make amazing organic crêpes (“tout bio!” as he shouts), but he also makes fantastic breads and the famous cornet végétarien.
The eccentric Frenchman sings and dances to the music of his boombox as he prepares your order. His cooking has a certain grace to it as he moves fluidly around his kitchen, grabbing this ingredient or that. The line moved quickly, and soon it was our turn! DM ordered a sugar-lemon crêpe, while I ordered my usual, a crêpe au nutella. As he buttered the hot plate, we were treated to another little song-and-dance performance.
Both crêpes were AMAZING. For the sugar-lemon one, Alain grated some organic lemon zest and then squeezed lemon juice all over it as a finishing touch. We thought it might make it taste a bit sour but instead it complemented the sugar and sweet batter perfectly with a crisp, tangy taste. My nutella one was heavenly! We decided that the magical element may just have been the slightly burnt butter that made the batter taste all sorts of wonderful.
The Marché des Enfants Rouges is a perfect place to stroll around on a Sunday or meet up for lunch. With a wide variety of stands, ranging from Moroccan tajines to a fantastic wine hub, there’s something for everyone to enjoy here.
Below you can see some of the pictures from our visit and the delicious treats we enjoyed. Can’t wait to visit again soon. Merci, Alain!
Your new favorite place to eat in Montparnasse: Le Stand
Le Stand is a new New York-Italian style restaurant in the fun 14e arrondissement. A lover of both the outdoor métro line 6 and the Edgar Quinet neighborhood, I was absolutely delighted to discover this eatery.
Chef Yann Frohn has put together an incredible menu that will satisfy any member of your party’s palate. Burgers and pasta dishes highlight his mastery of this particular cuisine, while the plat du jour menu usually features French dishes that are salivation-worthy.
Frohn’s previous experience at four-star hotel restaurants and in the luxury industry is apparent in the presentation and variety of the menu. The ingredients are fresh, with the vast majority of the menu made in-house. The burger was perfectly American, and the fries were without a doubt the best I’ve ever had.
The décor is fun and modern, and it gives you the impression of dining in a Big Apple eatery. It’s only when the staff and other guests speak that you realize you actually are in the French capital. I absolutely loved the light fixtures (see below) and red walls!
Desserts were also amazing! As you know, I’m a lover of the café gourmand, and this particular one was a big hit. If you can contain yourself and enjoy just one dessert, I would go for the profiteroles!
Another plus is that they can accommodate large parties. We celebrated my brother-in-law’s birthday, and all twenty of us were easily accommodated and well taken care of.
For a casual lunch or night out, Le Stand is the next place on your list.
9, boulevard Edgar Quinet
This is a match made in fashion and gastronomy heaven!
One of my favorite brands, Citizens of Humanity, has created a monthly video series called “Just Like You.” Each video features a different, international personality discussing their respective passions, professions, personal stories, and thoughts on life. One of my favorite videos in the series spotlights French chef Hélène Darroze.
Though she is now the fourth generation of a family of chefs, Hélène Darroze first earned a business degree and joined Alain Ducasse’s team at the prestigious Louis XV restaurant in Monaco – but in the office. Ducasse finally persuade her to return to the kitchen, and the rest is history. She returned to her family’s Michelin-starred restaurant, and then went on to open her own restaurant in Paris, where she won her first Michelin star in 2001, and then a second star in 2003. In 2008, she was named the new chef of The Connaught hotel in London after its nine month £70 million restoration and renovation program, where she earned them another two stars. On top of this all, other accolades include becoming a chevalier (knight) in the French Legion of Honor in 2012 and being the inspiration for the character Colette in Pixar’s 2007 film Ratatouille. Two cities, two restaurants, two children: she can do it all!
What is exceptional about Hélène Darroze’s cooking is her loyalty to her roots and the flavors of southwestern France, particularly from the Landes region where she was raised. Her culinary style has been dubbed “haute rustique,” as it combines the sophistication of French cuisine with traditional cooking methods and hearty ingredients. Darroze says she is very influenced by her heritage, where art de vivre cuisine and food is so important. This unique emphasis has no doubt contributed to her international success.
It’s no wonder that Citizens of Humanity selected such a dynamic and passionate person for their series. I fell in love with this clever combination to showcase their partnership, a jean oven mitt! And x marks the spot, or the Hélène Darroze restaurant in Paris. You can purchase the mitt online here.
All proceeds from the Hélène Darroze x Citizens of Humanity Oven Mitt will benefit Afghanistan Libre, an organization that provides assistance in constructing and running primary and secondary schools for girls.
Visit Hélène Darroze in Paris
4, rue d’Assas, 75006
Hélène Darroze at The Connaught in London
The Connaught, Carlos Place, Mayfair, London, W1K 2AL
or at the Raff House in Moscow
Malaya Nikitskaya street, 25
Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. Being away from the US, I was curious as to how the celebrations would fare this year. Where does one get cranberries, a turkey, pumpkin pie ingredients, gravy, and stuffing in this city?
Thankfully, (pun intended) you can get it all in Paris! Not without a few treks across entire metro lines and hitting the store Thanksgiving in the Marais (without which the full meal would not have been possible), but you can definitely find everything you need to pull off a successful Turkey Day meal. In fact, at the store Thanksgiving, one can get all sorts of American food products! (Reese’s peanut butter cups, included!) Oh, the way to get a turkey across the city is to place yourself in the back corners of the metro, where you can put it under your seat, or behind you on your seat, because that thing is heavyyy.
I was fortunate enough to have not one but TWO Thanksgivings this year! Both involved including friends from all over the world and introducing them to our fabulous eat-til-you-burst holiday. The best parts of the night were going around and saying what we were thankful for (which everyone loved! When an English friend heard what we were about to do, she said, “YES! I have always wanted to do this and I never thought I would get to!!!!!” Happy that this made her holiday!) and introducing European friends to my favorite dessert, pumpkin pie. I loved seeing the concerned and curious faces take their first bite of the pie and immediately smile and say, “Oh my goodness! THIS IS SO GOOD!” Yes, ladies and gentlemen, pumpkin pie is amazing.
Of course, the experience of being able to celebrate this important American holiday while being almost 6000 miles away from home was truly the best part of this Thanksgiving. This year, I am thankful for: my family, of course, whose support and love is my biggest motivation to succeed and without whom my life in Paris would not be possible; my friends, old and new, who never cease to impress me, motivate me, make me proud, and make me laugh; my voice teacher and professors, who help and push me to achieve my goals; having met John, who every day makes me so incredibly happy; and last but certainly not least, Paris, which has shown me different sides of myself, has made me grow as a person with the new challenges and experiences that I see on a daily basis, and is the city that has introduced me to some of the most amazing people and things in the world.
As always, Paris, je t’aime.