April 10, 2012
Being vegetarian anywhere requires extra effort and planning when it comes to dining out. Being a vegetarian in a place that eats pigeon, adores offal, and extols a head to tail philosophy (that is, Paris) requires Napoleonic strategizing.
At least it used to. In recent years, the dining scene in the City of Light has been opening up to alternative styles and menus, making it easier than ever to go veg (although you can still expect the occasional eye-roll from a waiter who simply doesn’t understand les végétariens). But whether you chalk it up to Anglo and ethnic infiltration, acceptance of new ingredients and spices, or simple ennui with traditional French cooking, it’s a great time to embrace your inner green goddess and take this meat-eating city by storm. Here are four delicious strategies to help.
Merce and the Muse (Julien Hausherr)
Strategy 1: Eat a big lunch
When Rose Carrarini (who’s British) and her French husband Jean-Charles opened Rose Bakery in 2002, their focus on fresh market salads—think: grilled tofu and tomatoes, and artichokes mixed with millet and chickpeas—was shockingly different from the staple of steak frites that many Parisians ate for lunch. Ten years and two additional outposts later, it’s hard to imagine Paris without Rose’s organic market salads, fresh quiches and famous carrot and pound cakes.
Similarly, when Marc Grossman opened Bob’s Juice Bar in 2006, the smoothies and bagel sandwiches the native New Yorker served up were wildly novel. Since then Grossman has not only spawned another café, Bob’s Kitchen, which serves additional goodies like pancakes and muesli, but a whole wave of casual cantines have followed suit. Hypercool concept stores Merci and Colette both have veg-friendly subterranean eateries; take-out lunch spots like Lemoni and Cojean always offer beautiful soups, sandwiches and salads; and lovely little cafes and bakeries such as SuperNature, Merce and the Muse, Tartes Kluger and Bread and Roses all offer outstanding veg fare.
Strategy 2: Eat ethnic
Another way to sate yourself without a bite of bifteck is by taking advantage of Paris’ ethnic restaurants. In the first arrondissement, Rue Saint-Anne is an oasis of Japanese dining options including hearty udon soups (try Kunitoraya or Higuma) and “okonomiyaki,” Japanese pancakes made of flour, grated yam, water or dashi, eggs and shredded cabbage. Or you can get stuffed on Indian lentils and curries (Saravanna Bhavan, Krishna Bhavan) and Moroccan couscous and tagines (Chez Omar). Decent pizza (Pizza Chic, La Briciola), and Italian (Caffe dei Cioppi, Olio Pane Vino) abounds and, with last year’s arrival of Candelaria, Mexican is firmly on the ethnic eating map of Paris. Continue Reading »
Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews | 11 Comments »
March 7, 2012
If you’re lucky enough to be visiting Paris in March, there are tons of things to do that don’t involve fashion week. Here is our list of not-to-miss events, foodie happenings, concerts, exhibits and general goings-on. -Geneviève
March 10-11: Colette Carnival in the Tuilleries: Bon anniv’ to one of our favorite concept stores! Colette will be celebrating its 15th bday with a fab – and free – carnival in the Tuileries.
March 17-18: A Brunch Bazar weekend has to be the best one of the month. Two nine-hour days filled with little bits of the things we love: food, music, workshops and even a funhouse for the little ones.
March 11-13: After a long stint in Deauville, the Omnivore Food Festival heads to Paris. In case plentiful tastings from some of France’s greatest chefs isn’t enticing enough, the alcohol and tunes that are sure to be in abundance make this a must-do.
March 8: Phenomenal Handclap Band at Nouveau Casino: PHB’s feel-good fusion tracks hit Paris and are not to be missed. If some old-school soul meets disco is what you crave, get to Nouveau Casino on Thursday night.
March 11: Super Sunday with Patrice is a mixed-medium event inspired by music, dance, graffiti and gastronomy. Enjoy some indie artwork and a delicious menu by Nelson Muller before jamming out to Afro-German Reggae artist, Patrice. Take a peek at the menu here.
March 20-April 1: Les Femmes S’en Mêlent, a cross-Europe indie music festival celebrating female music-makers comes to Paris. Check out the lineup here.
March 7-August 5: The magical Tim Burton Exhibition at Cinémathèque Française opens today. Following a wildly successful showing at New York’s Museum of Modern Art, the fantastical works of Mr. Burton made it overseas. This show is a true pleasure and treat for the imagination of adults and children alike.
Through March 18: Experiencing the works of a creative mastermind is always a pleasure, isn’t it? The Jean-Paul Goude exhibit at Les Arts Décoratifs is the designer/illustrator/photographer ‘s first retrospective, so it’s only appropriate that happening in Paris.
March 9-16: Louis Vuitton – Marc Jacobs at Les Arts Décoratifs: Goude, Vuitton and Jacobs in the same location? That’s almost more genius than we can handle – but not quite. Once you’ve digested the former, be sure to check out the latter. The designers’ fabulous pieces are only on view for one week. In the mood for a teaser? Check out this video. Continue Reading »
Posted in Arts, Events | 3 Comments »
May 14, 2009
Courtesy of Fadwebsite.com and Freedomrecord
How many times have you wandered around a department store, and with every identical rack and bored attendant felt your eyes glaze over and the thrill of shopping fade perceptibly? In my earlier post I wrote about the annoying pretense of many so-called concept stores; that post withstanding, this type of boutique does offer a refreshing alternative to mass-market retail when you’re looking for something a little more… creative.
On a recent afternoon I had the privilege of wandering through Paris with the grandiose objective of visiting and analyzing The Concept Store. As my esteemed colleague Tory had already entertained this blog with her witty rendition of Merci, I was left with a couple must-sees, Colette and Kiliwatch, and the new kid on the block, Suite 114. Continue Reading »
Posted in Arts, Parisian Living | No Comments »
April 29, 2009
Ah, the concept store. Prescriptive, arrogant, attractive, alternately kitschy-cheap and prohibitively expensive; it’s hard to avoid mixed feelings when dealing with these store-size display cases of “cool”. Except, that is, if you wander up the Rue Vieuville in Montmartre and stop by Spree on a lazy, sunny afternoon.
This gallery/boutique was started 8 years ago by low-key creative couple Roberta Oprandi and Bruno Hadjadj, she a designer, he an artist, with the unambiguous purpose of allowing their inspirations to mingle and match.
Whereas fad-meccas like Colette inevitably make you feel like you’re walking into a museum where the docents are the judges and executors of trendy, Spree manages to elusively walk the line of cozy, intriguing and unpretentious. Continue Reading »
Posted in Arts, Parisian Living | 1 Comment »