I had been there twice before, once for a high school trip and the other for a more extended study-abroad program. I adored it both times and dreamt of a time that I could return.
Last August, I decided that since I actually had my life planned far enough ahead of time to book plane tickets, I would schedule my Parisian adventures for my school’s April break.
While I have seen all of the “touristy” parts of Paris, I wanted to tackle all of the hidden gems that the locals know about and keep secret from us foreigners.
I turned to David Lebovitz, American expatriot in Paris, who has authored several cookbooks as well as the man behind the popular blog davidlebovitz.com.
Like me, he has a keen interest in food and has explored Paris by following his nose to the best bakeries, pastry shops, and bistros.
When I am not in Paris, I live vicariously through him. When I am there, I follow his recommendations.
A few years back, he penned the book The Sweet Life in Paris. In this book, he spins tales of Paris, its people, and (perhaps best of all) its food. I love this book.
He tells us about the best places to buy croissants, chocolates, oils, meat, cheese and more. This is a man after my own heart.
As I embarked on this trip to Paris, I wrote down some of his highly recommended addresses and paid them a visit. I also made sure to explore Paris with the spirit that Lebovitz encourages: being drawn to new tastes and savoring them.
If you should venture to Paris anytime soon, here are some addresses that I can add to his. These are home to foods
that I will return to every time I venture back (since I WILL be back) and you should try them as well.
- Mondrian: 148 Blvd St. Germain, Sixth Arrondissement: Get the hot chocolate a l’ancienne. It will rock your world.
- Berthillon: 31 Rue St Louis en l’ile, Fourth Arrondissement: Ice Cream and lots of it. My personalfavorite is a scoop of pistachio and a scoop of dark chocolate…together! Nothing can beat this.
- The Restaurant on the rooftop of the Arab Institute of the World:1 Rue des Fosses St.-Bernard, Fifth Arrondissement. You will get a stunning view of Paris and a mint tea that will knock your socks off. Be careful though. It stops serving food after 3, so go for lunch instead of dinner.
- Le Refuge des Fondues: 17 Rue des Trois-Freres, Eighteenth Arrondissement: This is a tiny place in the red light district that serves up some delicious cheese fondu and great atmosphere. You have to climb over the tables to get a seat and people write their names on the walls to say they’ve been there.
- The Rodin Museum: 79 Rue de Varenne, 7th Arrondissment: They don’t serve food here, but they give you a great picnic location. Get some bread. Get some cheese. Have a picnic amongst Rodin’s statues. It’s amazing.
What are your favorite places in Paris? Have you been there before? Have I convinced you to get there as soon as possible?
I’ve only been back for a few weeks and I am already missing it…