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Le Bougainville: Homemade, Grandmother-Style French Cooking

Le Bougainville: Unfussy French Cooking near Place de la Victoire in Paris

I recently found myself strolling near the Place des Victoires, a business district that appeared to have closed for the day. Continuing in the direction of the more promising Galerie Vivienne, my date and I spotted a 1950s-style café with mosaic tile floors, Formica table tops, and primary-color paint. We were dubious, but hungry, so we stepped in, pleased to find that behind Le Bougainville’s near-empty café was a welcoming restaurant with a trove of pleased diners.

Le Bougainville: Unfussy French Cooking near Place de la Victoire in Paris

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews | 5 Comments »

The Paris Craft Coffee Revolution Continues with Coffee Spoune and Café Oberkampf

HiP Paris blog. Cafe Oberkampf. Latte made with Coutume coffee.

If this summer in Paris were to be labeled anything, it could certainly be called the season of the craft café. With so many places opening up — Steel, Honor, Ob-La-Di, Broken Biscuits, to name a few — it’s hard to believe that there are any niches left to fill. But somehow, the minds behind the 11th arrondissement’s newest offerings, Coffee Spoune and Café Oberkampf, have managed to differentiate themselves from the pack.

HiP Paris blog. Coffee Spoune. Looking in the window. Continue Reading »

Posted in Coffee | 2 Comments »

CREAM Café: Craft Roasted Coffee in Paris’ Belleville Neighborhood

CREAM Café: Stop in for a craft-roasted espresso or a light lunch at Paris' own authentic coffee shop in Belleville

Climb the ascending rue de Belleville in the 20th arrondissement of Paris and you’ll find CREAM, the city’s newest address for craft roasted coffee.

CREAM Café: Stop in for a craft-roasted espresso or a light lunch at Paris' own authentic coffee shop in Belleville

On a chilly winter afternoon, the foggy windows of the shopfront hide a warm, hole-in-the-wall haven. CREAM’s simple interior- white walls, natural wood surfaces, scattered green plants – make for an uncluttered yet welcoming space.

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Posted in Coffee, Food, Restaurant Reviews | 7 Comments »

Celebrating Local and Seasonal at La Récolte, Paris’ New Sustainable Food Shop

La Recolte Paris

In the two years that led up to La Récolte‘s opening in summer of 2014, owner Mathieu Mulliez tirelessly explored France visiting independent producers. His goal was simple: find dedicated artisans practicing sustainable agriculture and bring their fresh, seasonal products to Parisians. The concept may seem simple, but it is shockingly difficult to find shops like La Récolte in Paris.

La Recolte Paris

Bringing together quality products from France (and sometimes neighboring countries) as well as maintaining opening hours that correspond to busy city dwellers’ work schedules is a rare combination in Paris. Mathieu, who has worked his fair share of 9-5 jobs and has a love of cooking with quality ingredients, decided to meet this demand head on and create a shop that could welcome customers who are on their way home from work or looking for a quick, healthy lunch.

Bento Italian and Noisette Chocolat

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Posted in Food, Green, Parisian Living | 3 Comments »

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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Paris Farm-to-Table Restaurants: Delicious, Local and Fait Maison

Farm to Table, Le Timbre 25

Le Timbre, Palmyre Roigt

Over the past few years there has been a lot of conversation around the startling statistic that around one-third of France’s cafes, brasseries and restaurants are actually using pre-frozen ingredients or entire meals that only need a microwave before reaching your plate. In typical French fashion, this was a drawn out discussion that needed a government vote and while restaurants now can mark on their menus “fait maison,” when items are truly made from scratch, you might not always be able to see the menu before sitting down.

Farm to Table, Verjus 4

Verjus, Diane Yoon

A few months ago, I attended a question and answer session about French food and the fait maison/frozen food question was raised. A few people said, “you just should know where to go.” But without any mandate and as a visitor to Paris, “knowing where to go,” is easier said than done. And for first-time tourists, it’s easy to end up somewhere that is beautifully authentic and appears to be using all fresh ingredients but well, isn’t. Here are five tips to keep you street smart when eating fresh, seasonal and farm-to-table in Paris.

Farm to Table, Verjus 5

Verjus, Diane Yoon

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Posted in Green, Parisian Living, Restaurant Reviews | 2 Comments »

Bob’s Bake Shop: A Slice of New York in Paris’ 18th Arrondissement

Bobs, Cherry Pie

When he opened his first spot, Bob’s Juice Bar, in 2006, Marc Grossman says he was driven by a simple desire to bring a little of New York to Paris. “It was something from back home, something I missed, health food, juice bars,” says Grossman. The born-and-bred New Yorker, who at one time worked on Wall Street, decided to move to Paris 15 years ago. He married a French girl and never left.

Bobs, Montage, Cherry Pie, Pecan Pie

Since opening his first café, he has almost single-handedly changed Parisian’s dining habits for the better, introducing them to things like green juice and rice bowls he calls “Veggie Stew.” However, he says his goal was never to push a health food agenda, but rather serve organic, wholesome, tasty food. “We’re not extreme,” says Grossman. “We have muffins, but we also have salads. We try to mix it up.”

Bobs, Breakfast

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews | 2 Comments »

Rachel’s Restaurant and Bakery Opens Shop in Paris’ North Marais

HiP Paris Blog, Rachels, Isabel Miller-Bottome, Montage 2

A California summer salad with quinoa, a New York deli-style pastrami sandwich, smoked Banka trout on a sesame bagel— these are just a few of the homemade lunch items you’ll find at the newly opened Rachel’s restaurant in the North Marais.

HiP Paris Blog, Rachels, Isabel Miller-Bottome, 5

Parisians might recognize the name from Rachel’s Cakes in Montreuil, a bakery and catering business that Ohio native, Rachel Moeller, started with her friends, Maria and Birke. In a 60m2 apartment crammed with two stoves and an extra refrigerator in the bedroom, they began to supply fresh, made-to-order bagels, apple pies, muffins, burger buns, and their legendary cheesecakes to Paris eateries like Le Bal Café, Le Camion Qui Fume, and The Broken Arm.

HiP Paris Blog, Rachels, Isabel Miller-Bottome, 3

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews | No Comments »