Thursday, May 31, 2012

Pizza anyone? Dining at Pizzeria Maria Luisa

The city of Paris does not seem to be short on pizza dough. There are dozens and dozens of pizzerias throughout from the chains to the artisanal to the unique and the 10th district boasts some at least two nice options that I like but I certainly haven't explored them all. To think that there was a time that I hated pizza. A time when this great bread was foreign to me. Thank goodness those dark days are over.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Friday Foto: Rain rain go away, sunshine is here to stay!

3 long weeks! Is that what it was. The sun has not been a friend of Paris and the rain just kept coming and coming. So you can imagine that as soon as the sunshine was upon us, people took to the streets. Photos like these could have been taken anyway in the capital. The interiors of restaurants and bars with terraces were empty and everyone poured onto the streets.

Happy Friday! May the sun shine on.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Paris People: Hélène Dufleit - The Best Massage in Paris

I have always been a great lover of massage from an early age and only believe that those who don't like massages just haven't found a way to let go.

I remember trading massages with the grown-ups whose hands were certainly stronger than mine, at as early an age as 8 years old. I even took a massage class in university - a perfect way to end the work week I thought. What better time to get a massage than when you've arrived at your holiday destination? At least that's what I always say. And try to do. I've been told it is great for jet lag.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Sipping on Saturday: French Wine Tasting class with Preston Mohr

Today's Sipping on Saturday guest blog post comes from Gwen Evans of Paris Found. Gwen takes us into the Cook'n With Class' French Wine Tasting taught by Preston Mohr  where palettes are being opened to the finer side of French wine and general wine knowledge. Not to be missed!

If you are like most American visitors to Paris, one of the big pluses is being able to sample wonderful French wines at very reasonable prices.  The downside of that is that it can quite confusing and intimidating when faced with so many choices — many of which are unfamiliar to us from the States.  Add to that the fact that a lot of the wine labels have very little if any helpful information, and it's a bit of a gamble when you are at the store. In my 20 plus trips to Paris I have tried (mostly at random) lots and lots of different wines, both red and white, and have never really had a bad bottle; for between 4 and 10 euros you can get some amazingly good wine. Even the equivalent of "2 buck chuck" here is a whole lot better than the stuff back home.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Friday Foto: Nostalgia in Montmartre

I remember the first time I visited Montmartre as student. At the time I was living in the 5th and though I loved it there, there was something so magical about Montmartre. tIt is no wonder that I ended up back here again as an adult.

I had my portrait painted once at Place du Tetre with a friend visiting me in Paris and I heard the accordions playing in the streets. I have that painting to this day - Just have to locate where I've hidden it from myself. I remember thinking - this doesn't look that much like me. I wonder what I would think today?

It's funny when you re-visit a place you went to long before and you try to conjure up that first impression, that first awe and the feelings that you had when you looked upon the area for the first time. It always brings a smile to my face. You see I am a very visual being. My mind photographs everything I see. I stock the images away in my memory and can call them up whenever I like but some memories get fuzzy of course, so walking back in my footsteps helps bring it all back to me.

Happy Friday everyone!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Sipping on Saturdays: L'Academie de la Biere

You can get good wine anywhere in Paris but where do you go if you want good beer? L'Academie de la Biere! Follow James' journey to this fine establishment in the 5th. 

Europe might be known throughout the world for great beer but sadly that tradition hasn't made many inroads into Paris. While France does make some nice brew, it is overshadowed by French wine and Champagne. 

Just about every cafe in Paris sells beer and you almost always see people drinking it but most places only have 4-5 choices. So where do you go if you want a nice selection of brew (other than taking the train to Belgium)? Just head to L'Academie de la Biere.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Friday Foto : From The Top Of Notre Dame

I still think one of the best views of Paris is from the top of Notre Dame cathedral and the walk up is totally worth it. The line to go up gets pretty long so get there early if you don't want to spend all day waiting in line.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

And the best baguette goes to . . . .

My my my how we are so obsessed with the baguette in France. A bread that whose price as once regulated by the government. That was the fate of the ordinary baguette. But did you know there is more than one baguette? If you go to certain boulangeries and ask for a baguette you will get bread but you may just get that ordinary baguette (still a tasty treat of course), which is made from bleach flour from yeast. The bread that I ask for when I go to get a baguette is la tradition. La tradition is made from bleached flour + whole-wheat flour (so more fiber), a yeast but yeast from levain naturel (fermented dough), so it relies more on the talent of the baker to give life to his levain naturel and thus taste to his baguette. This is why a tradition of one boulangerie can taste so different from that of another.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Wednesday wanderings: Sainte-Chapelle

Most visitors to Paris know about Notre Dame but there is another amazing church that is located just a few minutes away—Sainte-Chapelle. Built in 1248, Sainte-Chapelle is known for its amazing stained-glass windows. The structure has survived a few revolutions and wars — all the stained-glass was taken down and stored in a safe location during WWII. Two-thirds of the stained-glass is original and continues to be an example of the finest 13th century craftsmanship. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Tuesday Tidbit: On va faire le pont - May holidays

I've always loved the month of May. Anyone knowing me personally probably knows why. But after moving to France the month of May took on a whole other dimension.The month of May has the most Jours fériés (holidays) of any other month. You could even throw in May 27th (Ascension), for good measure.


Labour Day (La fête de travail) Tuesday


1945 Victory Day (Victoire 1945) Tuesday


Ascension (Ascension) Thursday



Whit Monday (Lundi de Pentecote)

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