From your Parisian

Sharing my newest discoveries as I float through the streets of Paris. Restaurants, bars, events, all reviewed for you with love, from your Parisian.


Leave a comment

Paris Coffee Shops: La Bossue

My list of food places to visit in Paris is constantly expanding, so with almost 2 weeks off from work for the winter holidays (YAY :)) I had intended to check out a few of them for lunch. Unfortunately, I soon discovered that many restaurants and cafés had also decided to go on holiday (surprise…surprise…) until January. So I was really happy to stumble upon the charming La Bossue last week with my friend G. Located in Montmartre, it is just a few steps past the main tourist track which makes it a great place to enjoy a homemade lunch or a nice baked treat with a cup of coffee.la bossue_paris_tableWalking into this peaceful little tea house and cake shop is a true pleasure, with its large counter full of freshly baked treats displayed for all to see and the most amazing smells wafting through the air. The décor is a little like what you would find at a hip Grandma’s house with vintage wallpaper, mix and match furniture, retro mirrors, hanging potted plants and framed black and white family photos. The kitchen is open so you can see that everything is carefully prepared and baked in a large metal oven by the young and friendly owner.la bossue_paris_kitchen interiorWe sat down and ordered a pot of organic tea (4.50 Euros) at a table facing the cute inner courtyard, adorned with a pretty antique lamp. They offer a great lunch special which includes one of their 2 soups of the day (we both chose the seasonal veggie soup) with a savory baked dish (I chose the spinach and goat cheese pie while G preferred the creamy gratin dauphinois) and a side salad for 9.50 Euros. la bossue_paris_lunch specialla bossue_paris_lunch special 2Their comforting lunch is bursting with healthy vegetables while being incredibly tasty at the same time. Kind of like the type of meal a caring older relative would make for you. You can then be tempted by a large selection of sweet delights, such as a slice of carrot cake (3 Euros) or a delicate raspberry financier (1,40 Euros), to accompany a cappuccino (4,30 Euros) or a killer hot chocolate that comes with a tiny pot of vanilla bean whipped cream (5 Euros). Apparently they also serve a wholesome buffet brunch on the weekend (23,50 Euros), which I am going to have to try soon! la bossue_paris_coffeela bossue_paris_cakesVerdict: La Bossue is a real gem! Enjoy breakfast, lunch or tea time (open from Wednesday to Sunday) in a cozy and welcoming environment. And, as this is my last post of 2015, I want to thank everyone for following my blog this year and I wish you and your loved ones a happy and healthy New Year! 🙂la bossue_paris_exteriorContact Details:
9 Rue Joseph de Maistre
75018, Paris
+(33) 09 81 72 65 59

Rating:

5 adorable grannies out of 5

Advertisements


2 Comments

Paris Shopping: My top 5 shops in Montmartre when in need of that perfect gift!

It is only 3 days away from Christmas, and although I’m sure you aren’t all procrastinators like me, I thought it would be a good time to give you a short list of my favorite places to get last minute gifts in the Montmartre area of the 18th arrondissement of Paris. These places are mainly small boutiques (no big brand name stores) that sell jewelry, clothes, gifts and handbags that are actually made or created in Paris or in France…which is what I’m looking for when I send a gift to a friend overseas. The last thing I want to get them is something that they could have bought at their local H&M. So here are my top 5 go-to places, when in need of a special gift:

Make My D…make my D_Paris_exteriorMake my D… or as I like to call it, Make my Day, is a store full of carefully selected clothing and accessories by Nathalie Bui, that’s right, Barbara Bui’s sister. She has a talent for finding the most amazing items and her store always gives me the feeling that I am entering my (imaginary) fashionable friend’s walk-in closet. While she stocks Dutch and other European brands, you are sure to equally find Parisian based brands like Fine collection (cozy sweaters and other clothing) and My Boobs Buddy (cheeky T-shirts supporting breast cancer research).

What do I buy here? : Wallets, clutches and handbags by the Parisian brand Shine Blossom. They are made with soft leather in a variety of colors and styles. I love the details and the bright interior lining and have bought several items from this brand for friends and family! My black bag is pictured at the end of this post!

Contact Details:

7 rue la Vieuville

75018 Paris

+33 (0)1 44 92 82 98

La Boutique EtoiléeThis cute little boutique is located in the quiet rue Durantin and is great if you’re looking for a girly, sparkly gift for your best friend or sister. It is kind of like going to a local designer craft fair as all the items sold here are made by French (mainly Parisian) designers. My favorite jewelry brands discovered here include Chouette Fille (beautiful bracelets made from pastel colored, metallic and sparkly pieces of leather) and Virgnie Mahé (Art Deco inspired brass and enamel earrings that really stand out and give you a quirky, vintage look).

What do I buy here? Pretty gold or silver plated earrings by Hélèn Bussi that give you a classy bohemian look (a pair I bought is equally pictured below).

Contact Details:

16 Rue Durantin, 75018 Paris

75018, Paris

+33 (0)9 81 05 87 43

Cosi Loticosi loti_paris_exteriorIf you’re looking for some great home décor items, then you can’t beat Cosi Loti. It is actually equidistant from Abbesses and Pigalle metro stations and you are always greeted with a smile from the moment you enter the door. From framed inspirational quotes to scented candles to Japanese-style ceramic bowls and cups, you are sure to find inspiration for that special gift or for your apartment. They also have some jewelry and handbags for sale at the entrance of the store.

What do I buy here?:  Tea towels, aprons and cushions featuring cute patterns, graphic prints, and phrases such as “oh la la”, made by La Cerise sur le Gâteau. Perfect light gifts to send in the mail!cosi loti_paris_interiorContact Details:

21 rue Houdon

75018, Paris

+33 (0)1 44 92 90 39

Corpus ChristiCorpus Christi_Paris_exteriorCorpus Christi is the place to go for bobo/rock-inspired jewelry created and made in Paris. Although there is another boutique in the Marais, I usually shop at this location. I love the simplicity of their pieces that stand out thanks to the various religious emblems and influences from nature chosen. Baroque crosses, flowered skulls, totem polls, brass knuckles, feathers, daggers and other medieval medals are just a few of the choices of pendants you can have on a simple silver or gold chain. The boutique itself uses natural elements like fur, moss covered stones, plants and animal skulls to lighten the sometimes dark and medieval feel of some of their creations. Very popular with trendy tattooed Parisians.

What do I buy here?: Dangling gold bow and arrow earrings or a silver ring that looks like a French crown with delicate engravings and Fleur de Lys ends….too many choices to list!Corpus Christi_Paris_jewelryContact Details:

6 rue Ravignan

75018 Paris

+33 (0)1 42 57 77 77

PaperdollsPaperdolls_Paris_exterior1This concept store is so unique that it is worth a visit just to admire the decor, but if you look closer you will be equally impressed by the work of the various independent designers (mostly French) found inside. Clothing and accessories are presented in this universe, which is divided into sections corresponding to the various rooms (e.g. dressing room, kitchen) of an apartment. The bathroom features an old bathtub reconverted into a sofa, vintage taps and mirrors nailed to the wall, changing rooms hidden by shower curtains and jewelry displayed over two quaint dressing tables. The office has pretty rings laid out on a desk with an antique typewriter nearby. Floral wallpaper, porcelain plates and many other girly touches make Paperdolls a real pleasure to visit.

What do I buy here?: Cute rings by Emmanuelle Biennassis, featuring cutouts of clouds, foxes, sparrows or hearts. Very playful and fun, perfect for your little niece!

Contact Details:

5, rue Houdon

75018 Paris

+33 (0)1.42.51.29.87

So there you go! Obviously there are tons of other stores I could add, but that will have to come in another post… as I have to get out and finish my Christmas shopping! :p Happy holidays everyone!Shopping_paris_montmartre

 

 

 

 


Leave a comment

Paris attacks: darkness in the city of light

Words are hard to come by after the horrible terrorist attacks that occurred in Paris last night, however, I felt that a short reflection was needed. It really hit me hard this time as they attacked more than this city and its people; they attacked life and the pursuit of happiness itself.

It was almost one year ago today, November 16th, 2014, that I was at a concert at the Bataclan. I remember how incredibly excited I was to see my favorite hip hop artist, Common, live for the first time ever. I remember entering the beautiful theatre and the sense of unity shared by everyone as we all smiled and sang the same lyrics together in unison. I was so close to the stage that I could almost reach out and touch him! What a thrill! We were all at that concert to enjoy his music and to dance and feel alive. I was on a cloud of happiness after that concert, filled with the feeling that the world was an amazing place. Last night the people at the rock concert probably had the same feelings of anticipation and excitement. They probably screamed and cheered when the concert began and felt the incredible rush that music can sometimes bring. Like myself, they were there to have fun and forget their troubles…but unfortunately their evening transformed into horror.

I have been several times to Le Petit Cambodge, the restaurant near Canal Saint Martin that makes super yummy noodle dishes (they are especially known for their “bobuns”) and that was sprayed with bullets last night. I have fond memories of sitting outside in their colorful chairs with friends one summer night and equally another time inside, with a friend, where it was super crowded and we were elbow to elbow with the people beside us (but we didn’t mind one bit). This place is well known in Paris and is very popular, and as the temperature has been fairly mild lately in Paris, I’m sure it was packed with hungry diners.

Basically, the thing that shook me up the most was the fact that it could have been me, or my friends, that were attacked by these monsters and I realize just how lucky I was have had a night that did not end in such a traumatic manner.

So as I’ve already said, they attacked more than a city last night. They attacked innocent civilians who only wanted to enjoy their Friday night in whichever way brought them joy. Parisians love their Friday nights (and Saturdays too)! They love to go out for drinks, enjoy a good meal with good company, dance at a concert and live in the moment! These terrorists attacked the right to sit out on a terrasse and enjoy a cheese plate with a glass of wine, or simply a round of beer with friends. They attacked the right to dance like no one is watching or to sing to a song that you have sung along to for years and that has perhaps got you through some tough times. They basically said that everything Paris stands for should die. But it won’t.

Today, while going to get my groceries I overheard a Muslim mother talking to her son of about 4 years old in the street. She said “There are Muslims, Christians, Jews and Buddhists and we should respect everyone and their religion”. The boy looked up, slightly puzzled, and she continued; “we should never treat others badly because they are different, because the world is full of differences, and that is what makes it beautiful.” I looked over at her and smiled, then the traffic light changed and I crossed the street. I couldn’t help thinking that if every child had someone to teach them such compassion and acceptance, then these monsters would not be able to brainwash impressionable young people with their hateful messages and turn them into inhuman killing machines.

I can only hope that Paris will recover from these horrors while keeping its soul and my deepest sympathies go out to all of those who lost a loved one. I also hope that other cities in the world who have equally suffered from similar attacks, but which are not as “famous” as Paris, will receive the world’s support as we have seen over the last 24 hours. My heart breaks for Paris, but it is the city of love, light, freedom, music, art, culture, drinking wine and skipping home in the streets after a great night out and, in my mind, will always be capable of healing and shining bright again.

1