February 25, 2015
The interest in craft beer and spirits that started in North America and the UK has trickled over to France, thanks to a cutting-edge cocktail scene and a growing community of discerning drinkers. Inspired by these craft movements during their fifteen years of experience as consultants for the spirits industry, Nicolas and Sébastien Julhès of the eponymous epicure decided to launch their own distillery in the heart of Paris. Five years and not a few setbacks later, La Distillerie de Paris started production this year with a gin, a vodka, and a malt spirit which, in time, will become Paris’ first whisky.
The Julhès brothers gave themselves quite the challenge: located in the 10th arrondissement, La Distillere is the first distillery to set up in Paris in a century. Little, if any, structure existed for defining the legality of distilling in the city. According to Nicolas, it was a little like trying to get a driver’s license in a country with no roads or traffic laws. “We could have set up in the country, it would have been much easier,” he says.
February 20, 2015
Craft beer lovers have, until recent years, found it hard to find a good selection of their favorite drink, Paris being more prone to the industrial beer names like Heineken and 1666 than small-scale microbrewers. However, thanks to passionate entrepreneurs from all over France, that is changing.
February 16, 2015
A few months back, we covered the top historical, cultural, and shopping addresses dotting Paris’ unique 20ème arrondissement. Today we’re back with favorite restaurant and nightlife names, because what is a day of exploring without a delicious meal and drink to top it off? -Erin
The 20ème isn’t best known for its culinary scene, but in recent years gourmet restaurants like Chatomat and Roseval have moved into the neighborhood. Last May, the hip bar and bistro Triplettes opened on Boulevard de Belleville and has since established a popular nightlife and brunch scene as well. Thanks to the newly opened CREAM (run by two former Ten Belles baristas), Belleville now has its own artisan coffee shop. As its restaurant and bar scene continues to evolve, there are more and more reasons to visit the 20ème.
Boulevard de Ménilmontant
February 13, 2015
There’s no question that the city of Paris exudes and encourages love, in its many forms. This passion can manifest any time of year, but it’s certainly intensified around Valentine’s Day. This year, the theme of this varied amour is explored in many of the pieces in the new anthology, That’s Paris, a lovely collection of short stories. With an entertaining forward by Stephen Clarke of A Year in the Merde fame, the 24 fun, funny, and touching pieces of both fact and fiction are organized in sections ranging from, “What’s Love Got to Do with It” to “Becoming Parisian.” In celebration of Valentine’s Day, we’re going to visit some of the city’s most romantically charged locations through a selection of the works from the book.
February 9, 2015
I’m not sure any country takes chicken more seriously than France, where there are dozens of heritage breeds and where over 30 percent of the chickens consumed have been pasture-raised thanks to the Label Rouge program. This all ensures that whether your poulet rôti has been purchased straight off the spit at the market or at a Michelin-rated restaurant, the quality will likely be good. However, not all poulets rôtis in Paris are created equal.
Each Sunday morning at the Marché Bastille, follow your nose and the hordes of people to The Chicken Lady, a vendor known for her chicken crapaudine, or spatchcocked birds. The chickens have been marinated for several days in a variety of ingredients from citrus and ginger to honey and sesame, and then roasted until the skin is extra crispy. With a sticky, almost candy-like skin, these chickens are dangerously good (I dare you not to eat one in a single sitting). For added decadence get a side of the potatoes that soak up the roasting juices at the bottom of the rotisserie.
February 5, 2015
Behind a street art mural along the Canal Saint Martin hides one of Paris’ best-kept secrets: the self-titled “Ghetto Museum” Le Comptoir Général. This multi-purpose treasure trove celebrates Franco-african culture through music, film, fashion, and dance, and has a steady following among in-the-know Parisians and expats.
February 3, 2015
Ah, February. Paris just saw its first snow of the season, Valentine’s Day is around the corner…it’s a great time to be in the city.
January 30, 2015
The day we moved to Paris, I had pneumonia and my eight year-old daughter had a confirmed case of strep throat. Snow fell from the sky, the thermostat plummeted to historic lows, and by Saturday morning my very Californian five year-old was sick too. Their Dad was on a plane, flying home from a business trip in Cologne, and through a feverish haze, I went into panic mode.
It was the weekend in a foreign country that had been our home for all of 96 hours. I flew down a flight of stairs and asked our concierge what to do. She kindly introduced me to the pharmacist next door, explaining that the French turn to their pharmacist for basic first aid and medical advice before heading to a doctor.
January 28, 2015
Do you remember the film 2 Days in Paris? I imagine if you’re reading this—the Francophile that you are—you are familiar with this movie. The scene in which French actress Julie Delpy narrates all of the arrondissements in Paris she had lived in struck me as grand, not realizing that five years after seeing the film I would be sharing this very narration.
In the five years I have lived in Paris, I’ve lived in the 15th, the 3rd, the 4th, Oberkampf (twice), stayed in the 12th and the 13th, and even had a stint in Vincennes before settling down in Nation (also the 12th). When my husband introduced the idea of checking out this residential enclave, especially after having resided in the more popular and bohemian areas, I couldn’t help but wonder if we were still going to be within Paris city limits and if my friendships were going to become long distance.
January 22, 2015
Finding myself a single woman in Paris after 20 years of happily-ever-after came as something of a shock. Having lived decades as a Madame, I was suddenly a Mademoiselle. It took months of deep mourning before I awoke and realized that I was in Paris, it was springtime, and I was free to explore my fantasy of dating a Parisian. He’d lived in my dreams for ages, suave with an intellectual flair. He definitely wore glasses and a scarf, his unruly brown hair would be lightly greased back. Miraculously, he’d be 100% nicotine-free. He’d occasionally trip over uneven cobblestone as he geeked out, contemplating an important question regarding Nietzsche, Hegel, or Sartre.