eating here

Sunday, October 06, 2013

Recent victories: Conducting an entire tampon-buying transaction in French. Figuring out how to use the washing machine in this apartment sans tidal wave of sudsy liquid. Finding amazing vintage literally a block away. Timing this vacation perfectly for "first Sunday free admission" at the Louvre.

Recent failures: This salad.

Note to self: The Louvre is wonderful; its food is not. In fact, this salad made me so angry because it broke my streak of awesome meals here. Also, it was €12,80 (with the bottled water), and only the chicken (and the water) was decent. Grrr.

But other than today's lunch failure, dining in Paris has been beyond incredible. To keep from going broke and gaining a bazillion pounds here, my strategy has been to eat one nicer, destination-type meal each day, and then outside of that, eat cheese at the apartment or pick up a small snack somewhere. I've also been trying to have my more expensive meals at lunch, when menu prices tend to be more affordable. (You know what's great? How responsible that just sounded. When the truth is I've just spent all of my money on shopping, so basically I can't eat more than one nice meal a day. Which is maybe what I suspect the French Paradox really is: French women don't get fat because they spend all their money on amazing clothes and therefore have no money to eat. Which works out because then they look good in said clothing. OK, I'll stop now.)

So where have I been eating (when I'm not longingly caressing everything in Zadig & Voltaire or going crazy over the cat print lingerie at Princesse Tam Tam -- this exists and it is my destiny -- or wandering through the antique stalls at Village Saint Paul)?

Last Tuesday's lunch destination was Le Baratin (which I previously wrote about). Wednesday brought me to Le Severo, a ridiculously awesome 14th arrondissement steakhouse run by a man who used to be a butcher. I had the best boudin noir of my life there:

I was tempted to order seconds, but instead ended up having a medium-rare hamburger steak (I really think the theme of this trip is "stuff your face with weird meat parts") and frites. And then I walked off all of that meat by visiting some dead people and climbing a ridiculous amount of stairs. So naturally, I got hungry again and went to Jacques Genin for mille feuille:

Side note: Clearly this was not gluten-free. But I've been picking and choosing my battles. Been good for the most part (no daily trip to the patisserie or boulangerie, which has required so much willpower), but I have been been sampling a bit here and there. (And dealing with the consequences. But look at that mille feuille: Totally worth it. Oh, and the toilet paper here in this apartment is pink with flowers. It's very pleasant.)

On Thursday, I had lunch at Guy Savoy because I wanted to splurge and experience the whole Michelin three-star thing. This was mind-blowing and will be a future post all on its own. (You just have to remind me, though -- because I know I say "future post" a lot, and that pretty much turns into "never post." And the photos from this meal were just too gorgeous not to share.)

That night I broke my one-decadent-meal-a-day rule and went to another steakhouse with Derrick and Brooke. Where I proceeded to eat this entire thing all by myself:

Meat marathon, anyone? (And remember how I used to be vegetarian? This is kind of embarrassing. I've barely eaten anything green on this trip. Just a lot of flesh. Wait -- if I'm eating flesh and hanging out with dead people a lot, does this mean I'm a zombie?!)

Then Friday's meal was the plum brandy night at Aux Petits Oignons (and I'm reading that post and thinking that maybe I should never ever have plum brandy and be anywhere near a computer).

Which brings me to yesterday's eating adventures and this wonderful find:

Breizh Café, a.k.a. where you can find the perfect crepe, an extensive cider list and a very, very cute server. (Oh, did I just say that?) I was planning to order only a savory crepe ...

... but the sweet ones looked so good.

I couldn't resist. But can you blame me? (Especially since the cute server taught me how to ask for the crepe in French. Le sigh.)

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