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Privé de Dessert 2: Traditional French “Desserts” with a Twist

Privé de Dessert, a unique culinary concept in Paris

At PDD2 what you see is not what you get. The offshoot of Privé de Dessert, the quirky SoPi restaurant where entrées and main dishes look like classic French pastries, has brought the same fun approach to the Opéra neighborhood in the guise of a take-away “pâtisserie” with a twist.

Every delicacy in this bright 2nd arrondissement café looks like a pastry, yet they’re anything but dessert: a réligieuse with avocado cream and salmon rillettes, a delicate éclair that refashions the traditional ham-and-butter lunchtime sandwich, or a savory cupcake that hides a surprise tartiflette filling.

Privé de Dessert, a unique culinary concept in Paris

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DonAntónia Pastelaria: Portuguese Treats Along the Canal St-Martin

HiP Paris Blog DonAntonia Pastelaria Canal St MartinAmong all of the trendy coffee shops and boutiques along the Canal Saint Martin, one new address is standing out from the rest. Forget croissants and café crèmes for a moment and immerse yourself in the pasteis de nata and galão at DonAntónia, a part eatery, part grocery store that is dedicated to the tastes of Portugal.

HiP Paris Blog DonAntonia Pastelaria Canal St MartinThe idea is simple: everything – down to the milk in the coffee – comes from Portugal. A team at Canelas bakery in Pierrefitte, just north of Paris, creates the pastries each day. In fact, they’ve been catering Portuguese cuisine for 35 years, but DonAntónia is the first storefront for the products in Paris. Continue Reading »

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La Cantine de Merci. Lunch in Paris’ Trendiest Concept Store

La Cantine de Merci: Light Lunch in Paris' Premier Concept Store

Paris abounds with design galleries, chic clothing boutiques and tile-floored bistros serving market-fresh cuisine, but rarely do you find more than one together under the same roof. Merci is a delightful exception.

La Cantine de Merci: Light Lunch in Paris' Premier Concept Store

Founded in 2009 by Bernard and Marie-France Cohen, Merci is a concept store that rolls the best of fashion, design, household goods, lighting, and lunch into one stunning space in the Haut Marais neighborhood. Spanning three light-filled floors of a former wallpaper factory, the gallery-cum-boutique is run a bit like a magazine: roughly 15 “exhibitions” held throughout the year highlight diverse themes that have included herring, urban sports, wax-dyed batiks, and urban gardening.

La Cantine de Merci: Light Lunch in Paris' Premier Concept Store

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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 »

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Café Cour: A Hidden Pop-up with Terrace in Paris’ Marais

Café Cour: A Hidden Terrace in Paris' Marais

Is there anything more Parisian than lunch or drinks on a terrasse? The warmth of the sun offset by the breeze on your face, the tables spilling out onto the sidewalk…  It’s a perfect place to people-watch. But sometimes it’s nice to feel more secluded without having to move inside; that’s where the courtyard terrasse come in. Set just enough off the street to feel like you’re in a private space, it’s the perfect place for a summer apéro as the surrounding buildings create a cool oasis from the heat of the Parisian streets.

Café Cour: A Hidden Terrace in Paris' Marais

The Marais’ newest pop-up, Café Cour, offers exactly that. Opened the first of June and tucked away off of rue des Francs-Bourgeois in the heart of the neighborhood, the terrace offers half-sunlit, half-shaded seating up until around 17h, when the sun sinks just low enough to be hidden. There’s interior seating too, if you’re looking for a place to set up your computer and get some work done in a peaceful environment.

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Capucine: An Italian Café and Wine Bar Tucked Away in the 11ème

Capucine: An Clandestine Italian Café and Wine Bar in Paris' Faubourg Saint-Antoine

Emma Stencil

During a warm week in April I enjoyed a last meal at Paris’ favorite Italian restaurant, Caffè dei Cioppi, before it closed its doors for good. Although long-time fans of Fabrizio Ferrara’s flavorful cuisine were disappointed by the move, the good news is that the space has reopened as a relaxed Italian café and wine bar in the hands of Stefania Melis, already known to the Paris gastronomic scene as coupled with Simone Tondo of Roseval fame.

With the change of hands, the terrace tucked away in an alley off rue du Faubourg Saint-Antoine hasn’t lost any of its charm. Folding metal tables and chairs are replaced by wicker stools and round café tables. A smart green awning reads Capucine in a curly script.

Capucine: An Clandestine Italian Café and Wine Bar in Paris' Faubourg Saint-Antoine

Melissa Leroux

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Yard: French Fare with a Fresh Twist in the 11ème

Yard Restaurant in Paris' 11th Arrondissement

Throughout our meal at Yard, I noticed my dining companion’s attention being drawn to nearby tables and the circling staff. He wasn’t looking at what our fellow patrons were eating, as we had ordered almost everything on the menu. At first I thought he was taken by the beautiful owner of the restaurant, Jane Drotter, which turned out to be true, but only partially.

Yard Restaurant in Paris' 11th Arrondissement

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48 Hours in Marrakech

Weekend Trips from Paris: 48 Hours in Marrakech

One of the greatest things about living in Paris (and Europe in general) is how easy it is to get to so many amazing places; two hours and twenty minutes by train to London, an hour and a half on high-speed rail to Brussels, and in just three and a half hours by plane you can touch down in another world: the red city of Marrakech. There’s a reason the city has been a favorite of creative types and designers for decades; the colors and the chaos are intoxicating and inspiring. Because it’s a relatively quick flight, you can feasibly tackle the city in a long weekend. But if you have more time, by all means take it, and be prepared to use your French.

Weekend Trips from Paris: 48 Hours in Marrakech

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Strolling Paris’ Still-Shifting 11th: rue Popincourt & rue de la Folie-Méricourt

Exploring Paris' Streets: Rue Popincourt & Folie Méricourt

Split only by the busy boulevard Voltaire, the rue de la Folie-Méricourt and rue Popincourt form a bridge between the Oberkampf and Voltaire neighborhoods of Paris. Starting at the southern end of rue Popincourt and rue de la Roquette, just steps away from the 11th arrondissement’s town hall, a neon horse head greets you as you approach Chez Aline. The horse head, along with the flashy yellow-tiled interior, is a throwback to the space’s former incarnation as an equine butcher’s shop. Chef Delphine Zampetti doesn’t specialize in controversial meat, but rather delicious lunch offerings, which do sometimes include surprising proteins. The octopus, salicorne, and cucumber salad is a particular favorite among locals as are the sandwiches, which are made using fresh, locally sourced ingredients.

Exploring Paris' Streets: Rue Popincourt & Folie Méricourt

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Posted in Food, Parisian Living, Restaurant Reviews, Shopping | 5 Comments »

Paris’ New Breed of Concept Coffee Shops

Paris' New Concept Cafés Combine Artisan Coffee with Boutiques

Steel Cyclewear & Coffeeshop 

It’s no longer hard to find good coffee in Paris. Lomi, Ten Belles, CREAM, Holybelly—the list of places to drink impeccable joe happily goes on. For those who have hit up all the traditional cafés, a growing selection of “concept” cafés offer novel spaces in which to savor a cup of java.

Paris' New Concept Cafés Combine Artisan Coffee with Boutiques

Steel Cyclewear & Coffeeshop

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