Amy Thomas, the sweets queen behind the God I Love Paris blog and one of our very favorite contributors, can’t seem to decide whether she prefers Paris or New York. Hard life? But really, we can’t blame her… because we can’t choose either. What do you think? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below!
New York or Paris? (Kat . . .)
Quick: do you prefer hopping in a taxi or on a Velib? Would you rather wear Manolos or Repettos? Oversized sunglasses, or an oversized scarf?
These are difficult questions. Ones that I’ve personally been trying to answer for a year and a half as I’ve also tried cracking the bigger dilemma: Which is the better city in which to live? I know, cue the teeny-tiny pity violins. Whenever I lament feeling torn between New York and Paris, I get the “poor you” rolling of the eyes. But truly, it’s not easy choosing between the two best cities in the world. Let’s see you do it.
Beauty or Energy?
Notre Dame in Paris or Snow in Manhattan? (Karigee)
Paris is dazzling. All you need to do is watch a Godard film or see a Doisneau poster to know that. But to actually walk the streets—with the Plane trees and cobblestones; the rose-tinted street lamps, green bookstalls and golden limestone facades—well, the French know a little something about seduction, don’t they.
But in New York, you’re swept away by everything and everyone around you: pedestrians, taxis, buses, street vendors, blinking neon signs, little dogs, big dogs, and, oh the freaks everywhere! To walk the streets of New York is to know what it means to feel alive.
Montmartre or Manhattan? (Karigee)
Pleasure or Success?
Long, leisurely dinners. Romantic strolls along the Seine. Sitting with friends and watching the world go by. In Paris, you dream, you pontificate, you light another cigarette. You’re supposed to just be.
In New York, you can’t just be. But you can be anything or anyone you want.
Plat du Jour or Trend of the Moment?
With some of the most deluxe ingredients and most celebrated recipes in the world, what’s better than dining in Paris? You can linger for hours, indulging in course after course of classic cuisine, while keeping pace with lovely wine and being charmed by the waitstaff (if they’re not bristling at having to work).
But in New York, you get a scene served alongside dinner. You get madcap creations and unique techniques; ever-surprising menus and colorful creations. The only problem is, you’re also expected to order alcohol to jack up the bill, eat quickly so they can cram in more business, and tip your actor-slash-artist-slash-model-slash-hipster-slash-carpenter-slash-waiter 20%. Or else.
Chinon or Sidecar?
Thank goodness for French wine. I drink a glass—Chinon, Bordeaux, Cotes du Rhone, peu import—nearly every night. And, on my most recent trip to New York, I was reminded how lucky I am to do so. Back in Manhattan, a glass of wine starts at about $12 and often makes my mouth pucker.
Thank goodness for good cocktails. With boites like Experimental and Le Club du Cercle, the French are finally mastering the mix. But if I had a centime for every lousy sidecar I’ve had, I’d be a very rich girl indeed.
Macaron or Cupcake?
Cupcake or Macaron? (Amy Thomas;Yuichi Sakuraba)
Sigh. Where to begin. I thought there was nothing better than a quarter-pound, cornflake-marshmallow-chocolate-chip cookie. Until I bit into an exquisite choux-filled, raspberry and pistachio Religieuse petit gateau.
I thought I’d miss those big, sloppy cream-filled devil’s food cupcakes. But then I became addicted to dainty rose-flavored macarons.
Croissant or muffin?
Baguette or bagel?
Café or diner?
Left Bank or downtown?
Charlotte Gainsbourg or Carrie Bradshaw?
Charlotte Gainsbourg or Carrie Bradshaw? (r9M;Sion Fullana)
The debate rages on, and from every angle it’s a draw. And while straddling these two cities has made me see life in stark dualities—everything, an either/or option—well, what can I say? It’s also given me the chance to indulge in the best of both worlds.
- The very popular Paris vs New York Blog
- Tory can’t decide either… will it be Paris or New York?
- How to find Paris in New York?