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The Parisian’s Paris: Fabulous Dining Around Nation

The Parisian's Paris: Best Restaurants, Boutiques, and Bistros around Nation

Le Dalou

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.

The Parisian's Paris: Best Restaurants, Boutiques, and Bistros around Nation

Le Picotin

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.

The Parisian's Paris: Best Restaurants, Boutiques, and Bistros around Nation

Le Picotin

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Les Chouettes Restaurant and Lounge: Hip Dining in Paris’ Fashionable Marais

Les Chouettes Restaurant, Bar, and Lounge: A Cosy and Refined Art Deco Gem in Paris' Fashionable Haut Marais

Newly opened on Rue de Picardie in Paris’ Haut Marais neighborhood is the visually pleasing Parisian bistro Les Chouettes. With an elegant interior by design firm Lázaro Rosa Violán, the three-story restaurant and cocktail bar feels like a modern rendition of the Parisian art deco lounge.

Les Chouettes Restaurant, Bar, and Lounge: A Cosy and Refined Art Deco Gem in Paris' Fashionable Haut Marais

From the ground-floor restaurant situated beneath a soaring glass ceiling, a winding staircase leads to the second and third stories where you can enjoy a drink at the old-world cocktail bar or lounge, dotted with leather armchairs, iron globes, and an impressive little library collection.

On a chilly December afternoon, I cozied up in a chair by the fireplace to enjoy lunch with a friend who was visiting Paris for the weekend. The daily prix fixe menu was too good to pass up, beginning with a warming butternut squash soup sprinkled with lardons and crowned with a foamy mushroom mousse de lait.

Les Chouettes Restaurant, Bar, and Lounge: A Cosy and Refined Art Deco Gem in Paris' Fashionable Haut Marais

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A Noste: After-Work Drinks and Tapas-Style Small Plates near Paris’ La Bourse

A Noste: After Work Drinks, Tapas Small Plates, and Fine Dining Restaurant in Paris' La Bourse Neighborhood

The area surrounding metro Bourse generally turns into a ghost town after work hours. Teeming with business people and local employees during the day, the 9 to 5 crowd in the city’s financial district usually clears out once the work day is done. All that is changing with the arrival of A Noste, a split-level tapas and fine dining restaurant on rue du 4 Septembre.

A Noste: After Work Drinks, Tapas Small Plates, and Fine Dining Restaurant in Paris' La Bourse Neighborhood

A Noste: After Work Drinks, Tapas Small Plates, and Fine Dining Restaurant in Paris' La Bourse Neighborhood

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Le Poutch: Coffee, Breakfast and Brunch on Paris’ Hip Canal Saint Martin

Visit Le Poutch Café for Breakfast, Brunch, or Lunch!, Inventive and Seasonal Food near Paris' Canal Saint Martin

Rife with hip cafés, the web of streets surrounding the Canal St. Martin are a hipster haven, boasting savvy coffee and lunch options to locals and visitors alike. Café Le Poutch may be new to the scene, but it’s already made 13, rue Lucien Sampaix its own.

Butternut squash quiche, savory muffins, or riz au lait with orange zest are just a glimpse of the culinary fare. Offering a rotating, seasonal menu and a commitment to serving up innovative recipes and vegetarian options, Le Poutch is sure to surprise you with something new.

Visit Le Poutch Café for Breakfast, Brunch, or Lunch!, Inventive and Seasonal Food near Paris' Canal Saint Martin

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Bloom: Local and ‘Fait Maison’ Cuisine in Paris’ 11ème

Bloom Cantine: Local and Home Made Cuisine at Paris Café in the 11th Arrondissement

On a quiet street in the 11ème, a few blocks away from the bustle of Bastille, sits a quaint canteen that opened this past spring and embodies the local, fait mason trend we’ve been seeing so much of in Paris recently. I cozied up at Bloom on a recent rainy Friday afternoon with a visiting American friend and enjoyed a lovely lunch.

Bloom Cantine: Local and Home Made Cuisine at Paris Café in the 11th Arrondissement

Bloom Cantine: Local and Home Made Cuisine at Paris Café in the 11th Arrondissement

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Le Timbre: Changes at the Well-Loved French Bistro on Paris’ Left Bank

Le Timbre Restaurant, Interior Tables, Paris, Cuisine

One reason I hold a special place in my heart for Alec Lobrano and his book Hungry for Paris is because his guide to Paris restaurants led me to Le Timbre, a tiny establishment tucked away in the 6th arrondissement. After my first lunch there three years ago, the restaurant quickly became a favorite of mine and a regular stop on my itinerary when showing friends and family around the city. Each time I went to chef Chris Wright’s restaurant I knew that I would enjoy happy hours of eating at the tiny tables that line the space whose name- literally “the stamp”- commemorates the cozy size of the dining room.

Le Timbre, Montage Exterior and Table, Paris Cuisine

English by birth but francophile by choice, Wright’s cuisine was inspired by his childhood travels in France, particularly in the southwestern regions of the country. Wright’s menu proposed hearty servings of fresh fish and typical meat-and-vegetable dishes along with nods to his native land, such as a Stilton and sherry dessert. Despite the odd foreign cheese or charcuterie, the restaurant remained a typical French bistro, its simple menu exemplifying the joy that comes with enjoying quality ingredients and leaving the table well fed and happy. 

Le Timbre Restaurant, Wine Bottles, Paris Cuisine

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Paris’ Best Indian Restaurants from Bollywood Kitchen Chef Sanjee

Indian Restaurants in Paris, Nalas Appakadai Bowls

Thali – Nalas Appakadai

Following our last post on Parisian Indian Chef Sanjee of Bollywood Kitchen when we visited her apartment in the very yummy-mummy 17ème arrondissement, she confirmed her frustration at the lack of good all-round Indian restaurants in the French capital. Despite a multitude of not-so-great restaurants, four spots have managed to hold her attention (and palate). She shares them with us below.

Indian Restaurants in Paris, Nalas Appakadai Team

Indian Restaurants in Paris, Marcel

Sanjee at Nalas Appakadai; Marcel

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La Cantine d’Aznavour Armenian Restaurant: A Hidden Gem in Paris’ 9th

Armenian Cantine, Cuisine

La Cantine d’Aznavour is not a place you stumble upon; even when you know the address, it’s tricky to find. Tucked at the far end of a cobblestone courtyard in the 9th arrondissement, this unusual little restaurant serves traditional Armenian food with a generous helping of hospitality.

Armenian Cantine, Restaurant Menu

Located on the second floor of the Maison de l’Arménie (the Armenian cultural center), the “cantine” looks more like a welcoming church basement. The jury is still out on whether Aznavour is a actually a regular, but other well-known members of the Armenian community have been known to drop in for a plate of meaty Georgian raviolis.

Armenian Cantine, Potsticker

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The Elegant Eighth: Affordable Food and Superb Culture in Paris’ Chic Business District

Elegant Eighth, Paris courtyard

8th arrondissement, Rebecca Plotnick

For Parisians, many of whom don’t necessarily identify personally with their professional alter egos, the Eighth Arrondissement represents the office. True, it’s pretty, with row after row of Haussmannian edifices and wide, tree-lined boulevards. But isn’t so much of Paris just that?

Elegant Eighth, Paris street view

8th arrondissement, Rebecca Plotnick

Covering an area of 3.88 km² with a population a bit larger than 40K people, the Eighth is one of the wealthiest arrondissements in Paris. Second only to La Défense as home to multinational firms and banks, the Eighth also caters to tourism (Champs-Elysées), culture (Musée Jacquemart-André, Salle Gaveau/Pleyel, the Petit and Grand Palais), fashion (avenue Montaigne is home to the most prestigious Haute Couture houses), churches (La Madeleine, St Augustin, and my own favorite, the little-visited royalist Chapelle Expiatoire), and luxury (George V, Plaza Athenée, the Bristol, Hôtel de Crillon).

Elegant Eighth, Paris flowers

8th arrondissement, Rebecca Plotnick

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La Jeune Rue: The Latest Cultural and Culinary Initiative in Paris’ Marais

La-Jeune-Rue-Vertbois

Rue de Vertbois, Emma Stencil

Three quiet streets in ParisMarais neighborhood are the site for one of the most interesting projects of the year. The name Cédric Naudon, French entrepreneur and millionaire, was splashed all over the French press this spring with the announcement of his sensational initiative La Jeune Rue.

La Jeune Rue, Empty Street

La Jeune Rue, Isabel Miller-Bottome

Not much is known about this low-profile businessman who is said to have made his millions in real estate and finance in the United States. The Gatsby-esque aura surrounding Naudon is reinforced by his reticence in interviews, as well as the flamboyant decision to purchase 36 storefronts over the course of a year to realize his vision for La Jeune Rue, a project that is estimated to cost over 30 million.

La Jeune Rue, Buildings

La Jeune Rue, Isabel Miller-Bottome

La Jeune Rue is set to transform three neglected Parisian streets – Rue Volta, Rue du Vertbois, and Rue de Notre-Dame-de-Nazareth – into a mecca for bohemian-bourgeois shoppers in search of locally-sourced and artisanal products.

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