Merci merci for the concept – solo café @ Used Books Café, Paris

It’s often said and it’s true Paris is a city that is best discovered on foot. Yes, you do need to watch where you place your foot so sometimes you miss the wonderful architecture as you are worried about, rightly so, la merde everywhere. That aside one of my favourite places to get lost in is le Haut Marais where there are the most incredible showrooms, designers, my favourite shop L’habilleur and great restaurants. On one of my many adventures in this part of town I stumbled across Merci Merci although the frontage just says Merci – a concept store that also houses three different eating venues – this is someone who knows from experience that shopping is a hunger inducing activity!  Continue reading

Still packing them in after all these years – solo dining @ Le Relais d’Entrecôte

We all have a friend who introduces you to new things or in my case creates a princess with taste for: shopping in Waitrose, Diptyque candles, art house cinema, travelling solo, eating and drinking in fine restaurants in London etc and my princess maker is called Steve. We meet at French classes at the Institute Francaise in my early 20s and 15 years on we are still friends. He is responsible for pushing me out into the world and giving me a return Eurostar ticket to Paris telling me to spend 4 days solo in Paris in my 20s – be an individual –  were his words I believe.

He also took me to Le Relais d’Entrecôte of which I have such fond memories, not actually about the food, and how we laughed at unsuspecting tourists who asked to see the menu and the snort of derision and the uniform chorus from the waitresses – we only serve steak frites. I cannot forget that one poor soul who asked if they had a vegetarian option which received a stare to rival that of Medusa. Continue reading

Somebody forgot to buy the matches @ Candelaria, Paris

Hidden bars are popular in Paris: the Beef Club, Moonshiner etc and they are fun at first given the novelty factor of entering the restaurant like you own the place, walking to the unmarked door, pushing it open and entering the secret drinking den. I had wanted to go to Candelaria for a long time and finally went with a friend and decided that maybe I had judged it unfairly so promised to go back for a solo apéro – ha! Continue reading

Sometimes only a burger will do @ Cantine California, Paris

A month ago when the weather finally started to improve, I decided to start my hunt for a decent burger in Paris. I actually don’t fancy eating burgers in the winter they seem more of a summer food. Back home in London I love GBK, my gorgeous Australian friend Ms Claire introduced me to that particular Kiwi chain many moons ago and nothing comes close to matching my love for it. Living in Paris, anything foreign especially American fast food seems to have some unnatural appeal and le burger well it is on a pedestal, when Burger King opened its first store here  in December 2013 after a 15 year hiatus there was a 2 hour queue for le whopper – quite! Continue reading

macarons hugo and victor

Eating cake on Bastille Day @Victor and Hugo, Paris

“Let Them Eat Cake innit” is what Marie-Antoinette said when she heard the peasants were starving, perhaps not the innit part but poetic licence and all that. To think she lost her head over that because we’re all eating cake now! Continue reading