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DBB/Paris: A Modern Twist on Mexican Food and Cocktails in Paris

HiP looks inside DBB/Paris, modern Mexican fare and cocktails in Paris' 11th arrondissement.

Shay Ola cuts an imposing figure in the tiny kitchen of DBB, his newly opened restaurant just around the corner from République. Tall and clad in a brown leather apron, he looks more like a blacksmith than one of the most recent chefs to take up residence in Paris.

HiP looks inside DBB/Paris, modern Mexican fare and cocktails in Paris' 11th arrondissement.

Originally from London, Shay came to Paris for what he describes as, “a scene where it’s still all about the food. Things are happening here at the moment and I want to be at the forefront of that,” he says.

HiP looks inside Death by Burrito, modern Mexican fare in Paris.

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews, Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

La Distillerie de Paris: An Experimental Micro-Distillery Opens in Paris’ 10ème

La Distillerie de Paris: Paris' only local distillery, making gin, vodka, and whisky spirits in the 10th arrondissement
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 Julh
ès 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.

La Distillerie de Paris: Paris' only local distillery, making gin, vodka, and whisky spirits in the 10th arrondissement

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.

La Distillerie de Paris: Paris' only local distillery, making gin, vodka, and whisky spirits in the 10th arrondissement

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Heimat: Chef Pierre Jancou’s New Paris Restaurant

Heimat Restaurant: Pierre Jancou's latest gastronomic bistro near Paris' Palais Royal

I knew we were in for a treat at Heimat the minute we walked in the door. For one of Paris’ most anticipated new restaurants, located in the swanky Palais Royal neighborhood, my expectation was to encounter that certain form of snobbery that increases the closer you get to the center of the city. But the greeting at Heimat is just the opposite; despite being housed in a stony cellar space on rue de Montpensier, the welcome is warm, as is the lighting and the conversation that fill the cavernous yet cosy dining rooms.

Pierre Jancou, the man behind Racines and Vivant, seems to have stepped back from the pretense of his earlier exploits in opening Heimat. It offers a legit list of natural wines, but clearly has an interest in making these wines, and the food they are paired with, accessible to a curious lunch crowd. Heimat joins a handful of comfortable dining spaces - Café de la Nouvelle Mairie and Le Siffleur de Ballons also come to mind – that prove that natural wines have found their home in Paris, and the restaurants that serve them no longer need to have an achingly cool aura or inflated prices.

Heimat Restaurant: Pierre Jancou's latest gastronomic bistro near Paris' Palais Royal

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews | 2 Comments »

Société Parisienne de Bière: The Newest Stop for French Craft Beer Lovers

Societé Parisienne de Bière: The best stop for French craft beer and microbrews in Paris

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.

Societé Parisienne de Bière: The best stop for French craft beer and microbrews in Paris

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LIZA Lebanese Restaurant: From Beirut to Paris with Liza Asseily

LIZA Lebanese Restaurant and Bakery: Sandwiches and Traditional Cuisine in Paris and Beirut

Liza Asseily

I recently made my way from the Palais Brogniart in Bourse to the lively Lebanese restaurant LIZA on rue de la Banque, which lines the AFP headquarters. Opened 10 years ago, it was Liza and her husband Ziad Asseily’s first-ever venture. The Beirut-born socialite, who bounces between Paris and Beirut, has since opened a magnificent restaurant in a former palace in Beirut and an outpost at the Galeries Lafayette in Paris.

LIZA Lebanese Restaurant and Bakery:  Sandwiches and Traditional Cuisine in Paris and Beirut

Liza Asseily

“The Paris restaurant is my baby but I love all my projects – even the bakery. In fact, you’d laugh at me if I told you I’d been dreaming of having one of the sandwiches from the bakery for the last couple of months while I was in Beirut. I miss Paris when I’m in Beirut and I miss Beirut when I’m in Paris,” says a bubbly Liza, her big brown eyes sparkling. Liza came to the city with her parents during the Lebanon war and has since called both Beirut and Paris home. “I love to be outside of my comfort zone – I think that this fearlessness to start something new is engrained in us Lebanese due to the war. We just go for it.”

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Stories of Love in Paris: Happy Valentine’s Day!

Romantic Paris: Celebrate Valentine's Day in the City of Love with Selections from "That's Paris" Short Stories

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.

Romantic Paris: Celebrate Valentine's Day in the City of Love with Selections from "That's Paris" Short Stories

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Posted in Parisian Living | 4 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 Food, Restaurant Reviews | 4 Comments »

Roasted Chicken in Paris: The Best Poulet Roti in the City of Light

Where to Eat the Best Roast Chicken in Paris: The Chicken Lady at Marché Bastille, Le Coq Rico, Maison Ramella, and more!

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.

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Posted in Food, Markets, Parisian Living | 4 Comments »

Le Comptoir Général: African Food, Drinks, and Dance Along Paris’ Canal Saint Martin

Le Comptoir General: Celebrating African with a Coffee Bar, Street-Style Thrift Store, Cocktail Bar, and Reggae Dance Floor Along Paris' Canal Saint Martin

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.

Le Comptoir General: Celebrating African with a Coffee Bar, Street-Style Thrift Store, Cocktail Bar, and Reggae Dance Floor Along Paris' Canal Saint Martin

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Sick in Paris? French Medical Assistance 101

When You're Sick in Paris: Practical Advice on Seeking Medical Attention in French Pharmacies, Doctor's Offices, and Hospitals

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.

When You're Sick in Paris: Practical Advice on Seeking Medical Attention in French Pharmacies, Doctor's Offices, and Hospitals

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.

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Posted in Parisian Living | 6 Comments »