The Gros Caillou (or “big pebble”) neighborhood spans from Invalides to the Champs de Mars in the 7th arrondissement. The neighborhood, which is located within a pebble lined boundary that dates back to the middle ages, is comprised of specialty boutiques, the café and merchant-lined Rue Cler, and the inevitable, tourist-tailored commerce.
While viewed as a more traditional neighborhood catering towards the affluent bourgeoisie, recently opened businesses are revitalizing the district with their youthful energy. Here are a few newcomers that provide a refreshing perspective on everything from pantry goods to athletic pursuits.
Bleu Olive Épicerie
A cheery, blue-and-yellow interior greets coffee, breakfast, and lunch lovers entering this cozy épicerie. Bleu Olive is a popular local hangout perfect for intimate gatherings, Friday evening apéros, and tapas style dining. The menu is made up of freshly made savory tarts, salads, soups, sandwiches, with coffee from Belleville Brûlerie. Here you’ll find a collection of local, organic wines and liqueurs, pâtés, chocolates, jams, and other conserves for all your pantry needs.
Vin, Art et Délices
It’s hard to miss this store front made up of gold-accented décor and bottles arranged like works of art. Nestled on Rue Amélie, Vin, Art et Délices stocks a special selection of Austrian wines from various regions. Here the ambiance is eclectically Austrian- think shabby chic meets Marie Antoinette—feminine, romantic, and filled with chilled and dessert wines, Champagnes, and Austrian specialties. Pick up a bubbly Schlumberger, which dazzlingly showcases the country’s shining personality through an iced, or one of many sparkling wine from the Weinviertel region.
Zia is an American-owned café that brews up more than coffee. While light-and-fresh, market-picked specialties and salads are plentiful, the star of the menu is a gigantic Dutch baby pancake, filled to your liking with fixings such as asparagus, egg, and parmesan. Bonus: Brunch is served all weekend.
This posh, gourmet épicerie on Avenue Bosquet adds a bit of pizazz in a tight laced district. Enter Black Cat and discover a realm of refined products, picked for exceptional quality by the finest culinary experts. Savoir-faire is executed and illustrated in wines and spirits with upmost respect for their terroir, among treats that are savory and sweet, teas, coffee, oil, vinegar, spices and condiments, artisanal salt and peppers, and high quality tableware.
While the neon sign in the window may ask “PLEASE (DO NOT) SMILE AT YOGIS,” there is a whole lot to smile about inside this wellness oasis. Dubbed the only yoga studio of its kind, YUJ is a welcome newcomer in the neighborhood, and a saving grace for fans of L.A.-style yoga: power-friendly, strength-building, and set to a killer soundtrack. The good vibes epitomize this special flow formula in the dark set to music, making YUJ uniquely for those seeking an out-of-the-ordinary yoga experience.
Guilt be gone at this health-nut-friendly sweets shop. Come here for good-for-you goodies including ice cream, sorbet, and other gluten, aspartame, and sugar free treats. Delicesweet makes it easy for vegans and health-conscious eaters to enjoy themselves with moderation. Tip: Sit back for a quality café and au naturel chocolate fashioned by Venchi, a master Italian chocolatier.
La Queijaria Nacional
Your passport to Portugal awaits at rue Saint-Dominique. Queijaria Nacional is not only the national cheese of Portugal, it’s also a sunny, white and blue tiled épicerie which embodies the culture and traditions of the Lusitanian culinary savoir-faire. Stock up for your next party, or settle into the small table for a dégustation apéro with Vino Verde: a slightly sparkling white wine distinctive of Portugal’s terroir.
Daniel Guittat could easily be hailed the florist of the 7th arrondissement. Jean-Laurent Guittat, florist extraordinaire, and his team are fit to fashion a floral arrangement for your home, office, event, cocktail, or wedding party. Personalize your design with the freshest flowers and botanicals from France to exotic locations around the globe.
Défilé de Marques
While living in a global fashion capital certainly has its perks—such as being nestled footsteps from dépôt vents and auction shows at Richlieu-Drouout, I have found the selection and customer service superior at Défile de Marques in the 7th arrondissement. Far greater than designer threads and treasures at discounted prices, here you’ll find high quality selections and consultants fit to find a marque to suit your personality. Go green, and participate in a form of upcycling gone glam at this luxury vintage shop: from Chanel to Louis Vuitton, McQueen to Jean-Paul Gaultier.
Girls Nails Bar
Book your next spa day with the girls at this eco-friendly beauty salon. Adorable and independently owned this women’s-tailored wellness center pledges to use as many earth-friendly tools as possible in their beautifying propositions. Girls Nails Bar proposes organic, home-made, all-natural treatments: a stark contrast to the chemical-driven offerings at classic nail salons.
Bleu Olive Épicerie – 184, Rue de Grenelle 75007. Open Tuesday through Thursday 8h30 to 19h. Friday apéro 8h30 to 21h. Saturday 10h to 19h. Métro: La Tour-Maubourg (ligne 8).
Vin, Art et Délices – 11, bis Rue Amélie 75007. Open Monday through Sunday 10h to 23h30. Métro: La Tour-Maubourg (ligne 8). Facebook / +33 09 80 65 21 19
Zia – 22, Avenue de Tourville 75007. Open Saturday and Sunday 10h to 17h. Wednesday through Friday 8h30 until 23h. Métro: École-Militaire (ligne 8).
Black Cat Delicatessen — 40 Avenue Bosquet 75007. Open Tuesday through Saturday 10h30 to 20h30. Sunday 10h30 to 14h. Monday 13h to 17h. Métro: École-Militaire (ligne 8).
YUJ YOGA STUDIO – 11 rue Edmond Valentin 75007. Studio: Open every day 7h45 to 21h. (by reservation). Boutique: Open Monday through Sunday 10h to 19h30. Métro: Alma-Marceau (ligne 9).
Delicesweet – 54 Avenue de la Bourdonnais 75007. Open Monday 13h to 18h. Tuesday through Saturday 10h30 to 19h. Métro: École-Militaire (ligne 8). Online orders available.
Queijaria Nacional – 108 Rue Saint-Dominique 75007. Open Monday through Saturday 9h30 to 20h. Sunday 9h30 to 13h30. Métro: École-Militaire (ligne 8).
Daniel Guittat – 62 Boulevard de la Tour-Maubourg 75007. Open Monday through Saturday 8h30 to 20h30. Sunday 11h to 13h. Métro: École-Militaire (ligne 8).
Défilé de Marques – 171 Rue de Grenelle 75007. Open Tuesday through Saturday 12h to 20h. Métro: École-Militaire (ligne 8).
Girls Nails Bar – 62 Avenue Bosquet 75007. Open Monday through Saturday 10h to 20h. Métro: École-Militaire (ligne 8).
- While you’re in the neighborhood, check out Le Cairn Cafe and Naturopathy.
- You can find more wine at Les Petits Domaines.
- Read about the 7th arrondissement over at Paris Perfect.