Eating well in Paris

Paris has some of the best restaurants in the world.  But sometimes it is hard for a tourist to find good, affordable foods.  We had some great meals while in Paris.

I have to admit that I could simply eat a baguette sandwich from a bakery and be happy the whole trip.  That is my go to quick, easy and cheap meal in Paris and it never disappoints.  They usually have a wonderful selection of sandwiches with different types of meat, cheese and with or without salad.  They are even great purchased from supermarkets.

My second must have food in Paris is all the great pastries and breads.  Can you say pain au chocolat?  Why would you ever need to eat anything else, except if it is a Tarte a Citron or a Mont Blanc or anything sold in a bakery.  All the breads are also excellent.

Another must have is a crepe.  It is best if you find a place that makes them fresh and to order.  I noticed many of them make a whole bunch and then just fill it for you.  That is not what you want, you want it fresh.  I personally love crepe with banana and Nutella but a crepe sucree is also wonderful.

If you want to have a sit down meal this is how I go about choosing a meal.  I look for a restaurant that doesn’t appear to have any tourists in.  I prefer small quirky places where they treat their regular customers like old friends.  Some times they are little holes in the wall, some times they are fancy.  But without fail this recipe never fails me.  This time my husband and I stumbled across L’Enfance du Lard near the Saint Suplice.  We ordered the Camembert pané roti et salade verte for an appertizer and since I love camembert it was a perfect start.  Then I had the parmetier au confit the canard, which is basically a potato cloud with duck cooked in sauce.  It was delicious.  My husband had the very well cooked veal liver.  It was a small restaurant with a lovely ambiance and I am so glad we stumbled upon this great place.  We had a memorable French meal without spending too much money and the food was excellent.

Our other dinner experience was using a Groupon coupon and we also had an excellent meal for a steal.  Read my experience here.

One thing I noticed was that many cafes and bakeries offered brunches on the weekend.  So one sunny Saturday morning my husband and I had a great brunch at Le Pain Quotidien Lepic in Montmartre.  There is nothing quite as Parisian as sitting outside on a sunny morning, eating delicious food and watching people go by.  We spent a long time doing this and I have to admit that it was probably one of my favorite Paris experiences.  Plus it did not hurt that the food was delicious and plentiful.  My husband ordered the biologigue brunch which was all healthy and vegetarian.  I ordered the traditionelle which had some lovely French cheeses, some cold cuts, pain au chocolat and other breads.  We both had the delicious yogurt parfait and wonderful chocolat chaud.

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A bounteous brunch at a Paris cafe.

When in Paris you simply must find a great place to eat outside.  Parisians enjoy this ritual no matter the weather and I think it does good for their souls.  We were lucky that this day in particular was one of the warmer days while we were there.  But many cafes offer outside heaters.

Near our hotel there was a bakery/ tea house that always had a long line.  I got in the bakery and ordered a Mont Blanc and it was a great pastry.  On our last day in Paris we simply had to stop by a patisserie and enjoy some of their creations.  The hard part is simply picking one.  But when in Paris you simply must act like a Parisian and just pick your favorite.

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It’s impossible to pick only one pastry!

Paris is a wonderful place to eat.  Just be sure you choose wisely or you will be eating touristy meals that are expensive and tasteless.  Eat like a local.

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