Saturday, September 29, 2012

People’s Drugstore - Beer Store in Montmartre

While you can get good wine just about anywhere in Paris, finding good beer is a bit tougher. The grocery stores tend to stick with just a few mass-market brands and it can be tough to find a more than 4-5 beers on tap at your average bar/cafe.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Amazing Cèpe: a wild mushroom lover's dream

Did you know that the general health association (DGS), in France recommends to amateur pickers that when in doubt on the toxicology of mushroom, they should consult their pharmacist? Historically as part of their training, Pharmacists in France are taught to recognize a large number of mushrooms in order to prevent food intoxication. So if you venture of into the wild to collect your mushrooms (proceed with caution), you can take your spoils to a local pharmacist to have him confirm whether or not they are edible. It is always best to go mushroom picking with someone who knows what they are doing as you probably don't want to make your next mushroom experience your last!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Wednesday wandering - Jardin Anne-Frank

The Jardin Anne-Frank is located near the Centre Pompidou at the end of the little Impasse Berthaud paved dead end street.  This hard to find garden is very away from tourists and even many locals don't realize it is here. We only found it by accident thanks to google maps. It is a great place to have a quiet picnic or a quick lunch.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Musée de Montmartre: Autour du Chat Noir

You've seen it. I mean you can't really miss it: Le Chat Noir. But other than a cute little kitty on your Paris souvenir shopping bag or tee-shirt, do you know what Le Chat Noir represents?

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Wednesday Wandering: C’étaient des enfants - Déportation et sauvetage des enfants juifs à Paris

Although Paris was relatively unscathed during much of WWII that didn't mean all its citizens remained safe. The Vichy government openly collaborated with the Nazi occupiers to identify Jews for deportation and transportation to the death camps (about 75.000 were killed form Paris). Some of the saddest cases were the small children that were rounded up from Paris and sent off the the death camps.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Tuesday Tidbit: Memorial to Michel Petrucciani

Michel Petrucciani was a French jazz pianist who was influenced by Duke Ellington at an early age and performed with Kenny Clark and Charles Lloyd.  A memorial is dedicated to him at the intersection of rue Duhesme, rue Versigny, and rue Sainte-Isaure in the 18th arrondissement.  Place Michel Petrucciani features a sidewalk mosaic dedicated to him by painter, sculptor, and life-long friend Edouard Detmer.  The mosaic was inaugurated in 2003, four years after Petrucciani's death.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Paris People: Artist Alan Smith

Montmartre is one of those places in Paris where (you have probably heard this), great artists came to mingle. An artist's mecca and haven with a bohemian charm. Where the likes of Toulouse-Lautrec, Utrillo and Van Gogh came both to be inspired and to be "free".  But the art has never left this vibrant neighborhood and though many art galleries are found in other areas in Paris, it just seems so fitting to pop into some of these smaller galleries and museums with the same laid back feel that Montmartre evokes. Perhaps an opportunity to discover a new up and coming talent or even to acquire works of well known artist for less than you would pay in some of the "upscale" galleries.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Les 110 de Taillevent - Elegant dining in Paris 8

A good friend of mine told me about her dining experience at Les 110 de Taillevent and advised me that I must go to try it out. Frankly you don't have to tell me twice, I am always ready to try new things and discover new restaurants in Paris. Les 110 is definitely a great find and goes on to my list of recommendations to guests and friends.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Paris People: Desbina Collins from Fashion to Well-being

Do you ever Google anyone? Sometimes you are amazed by what you find, even about yourself! When I decided that I wanted to interview Desbina, I thought why not google her name and see what comes up and low and behold, there I found that she was once a fashion designer in Australia! Amazing! Now I was curious. How did she get to Paris and into massage rather than into the world of fashion in the capital of fashion?

It is fascinating to learn about people's life paths. Two people could have the same job and have taken such different channels to arrive at the same place. You'll find similar jumping off points for many of Paris' expats but if you dig deeper you often find inspirational journeys.

I had the pleasure of meeting Ms Desbina Collins some years back at a get together in Paris and quickly learned that this Greek born Australian was not only a gifted masseuse but also a charming and talented lady.
Photo Copyright Iron Lace

Saturday, September 8, 2012

7th Heaven at Hotel Terrass The 7th cocktail bar

I had finally gone to brunch at the Hotel Terrass, which is pretty hard to miss if you live or work in the Montmartre area as I do but I had not yet had the pleasure of wandering up to its small rooftop terrace bar, The 7th. I recalled reading a post about it from our friend Forest, aka 52 Martinis and was curious to try it out. So after a very busy hot day of running around I rushed over to the hotel to meet a girlfriend. Before stepping into the gloriously air-conditioned lobby, I noticed a sign outside that said that The 7th was "complet"- full! Oh no! Was I supposed to have reserved? I wasn't sure and actually I'm still not sure to tell the truth.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

La Rentrée 2012: Coming soon Paris events. . .

C'est la rentrée! The mass re-population of Paris has been in effect for about a week. It's officially the end of Summer. And what a Summer it was: rain, more rain, a minor heatwave and then finally beautiful weather just in time for the end of Paris plage. : ( August is Paris's quietest warm month and the Parisian who can or who want to, take off to warmer pastures for Sun, sand and fun. I saw them on the route to Barcelona. I spotted them in Poitou-Charente. They were in the Herault and Aude. They were just everywhere!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Paris in August: The Myth Of The Parisian Ghost Town

A lot of people have a pre-conceived notion that all Parisians leave for the entire month of August and that nothing in the city is open. People had told me this but after actually living in Paris in August I realized that these people were exaggerating a bit.
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