When the chance came to reconnect with the food and chefs that we fell in love with while on our honeymoon in Paris, Asheley and I jumped on board. Better yet, it was happening right here close to home in Brooklyn! Chef Daniel Rose of Spring Restaurant, Chef Inaki Aizpitarte of Le Chateaubriand, and even Pastry Chef extraordinaire Pierre Hermé were flown in from the City of Light (as well as several other chefs from around the globe), collaborating with some of Brooklyn Flea’s finest food vendors. Welcome to Le Fooding: Brooklyn Fling 2012, a 5-day event showcasing the parallel food trends driving the culinary scenes in Brooklyn and big cities across the globe… a breed of new, young, radical chefs that are at the heart of the global culinary landscape. As the people at Le Fooding put it, the festival was ”an insta-capture moment of all that is most alive in 2012, at the crossroads of style and deliciousness.”
Enjoy the various snapshots from Campfire Session #2, held at the Williamsburg Brooklyn Flea Market overlooking the stunning Manhattan skyline. Just check out this view:
Imagine this for a second: You wake up tomorrow morning to find that you have every “IT” chef on speed dial. Your inner circle of friends includes a plethora of Michelin chefs, wine producers, chocolatiers, and a smattering of other superstars in the culinary world. You are so tapped into the local and global culinary scene that you can score that impossible reservation every night of the week. Your phone rings and it’s one of the many international celebrity chefs, food journalists, sommeliers, or other industry professionals that knows your name, calling to ask if you could show them around Paris when they arrive on vacation. Your little black book of contacts is every food-lovers dream and fantasy come true, and that is just the tip of the gigantically amazing culinary iceberg that is your life.
Meet Wendy Lyn. It’s her real life, and she’s sharing it all with a steady stream of food-loving visitors in her home city of Paris…
Food. It’s everywhere in Paris! You can barely walk down one rue (street) without finding at least one eating option. However, eating well in Paris does require a little bit of work on your part. Luckily for us as we prepared for our trip to Paris, I am very “Type A”… so I researched… and researched… and ended up finding a lot of great information about the Paris culinary scene, as well as tips and advice for eating like a local. I found myself spending a lot of time on two fantastic Paris food websites that I highly recommend you check out before your trip: Wendy Lyn’s The Paris Kitchen and David Lebovitz’s Living The Sweet Life in Paris.
After eating our way through Paris and now reminiscing about our little time spent there, I’ve compiled the following tips for you to eat like a local (If you are looking for what you absolutely need to eat while you are in Paris, the foods you shouldn’t miss under any circumstance, look no further: check out my post on The Top 10 Foods You Have To Eat In Paris.) So here it is, enjoy eating like a local:
After being good tourists and doing touristy things: taking a strol through the beautiful Luxembourg Gardens, viewing the Paris panoramic from atop Montparnasse Tower, and visiting the crypts within the Pantheon, we were absolutely starving for some lunch. Luckily not too far away and within walking distance were two places I wanted to check out: Franck Kestener Chocolatier (which you can read about in my post The Best Paris Chocolatiers) and Les Papilles, a charming little bistro/wine bar. I had Les Papilles on my list of potential restaurants to visit after reading how much Paris food blogger David Leibovitz enjoys dining there. And man he was right… this place was great!
I like to plan… a lot. As I painstakingly prepared for our trip to Paris, I researched food extensively. I mean, hey, let’s face it: how many chances am I really going to have to go to Paris…. Exactly. And if I’m only going once (or maybe if I’m lucky twice), I wanted to do it right. I wanted to eat the very best Paris had to offer. And that’s exactly what I did!
And so came the idea to do this “Top 10 List”, so that if you ever have the amazing opportunity to visit Paris, this can serve as your gastronomic guide. As I sat down to write this post, it was a pretty daunting task… there is a ridiculous amount of insanely delicious, unbelievable food in Paris. How do you decide what’s the best?! But trust me, if you eat everything on this list, you are going to be very, VERY happy with your trip! I know I was. In no particular order, here’s my top 10:
Bistro (Bistrot): a small, informal, classic Parisian restaurant serving moderately-priced simple meals.
In other words, it’s a neighborhood restaurant. It’s a place where friends can gather and enjoy great food classics, all the while relaxing within a laid-back, casual atmosphere. It’s a place where you feel welcome, the waitstaff is friendly (but always in a hurry), and a great meal is only an affordable prix-fixe price away. Check out this wonderful article about the typical Parisian bistro experience on Wendy Lyn’s The Paris Kitchen. It really gives a great overview about why locals love the bistro and how they are different from American restaurants.
Bistro Paul Bert is a pretty special bistro. It is known for being one of the best, not only for its amiable owner and waitstaff as well as great food and wine, but also for it’s relaxed-lively atmosphere. Here’s a recap of our experience:
Chocolate. Those three syllables are like music to my ears… or more accurately, stomach. As a kid, I thought Kit Kat and Twix Bars were the best chocolate out there (ok, not going to lie, I still do enjoy a candy bar here and there). Growing up, Lindt and Godiva were the “gourmet chocolate” in my life. Then the awakening happened: a friend took me to her favorite French chocolatier in NYC, La Maison du Chocolat. I uncontrollably wept on the inside. Where have you been all my life, I thought, as each little piece of heaven was slowly and carefully enjoyed. I soon discovered another fantastic French chocolatier in NYC aptly dubbed Mr. Chocolate, Jacques Torres. These are the types of places that every cocoa bean dreams of ending up one day.
Now imagine you were going to a place where these types of chocolatiers were absolutely everywhere, always just a short walk away. Yes, exactly: heaven on earth! Asheley and I definitely spent our fair share of time in Paris chocolatiers. We didn’t get to all of the ones that I had on my list to visit, but the chocolatiers we did get to were really fantastic:
Day 1 Dinner: First impressions are important. And if Chef Daniel Rose’s Spring Restaurant was any sign of what was to come for our Paris gastronomic honeymoon (and it was), we were going to eat well. Very well. Knowing how difficult it can be to score a table at Spring, this was the reservation that I was probably most excited about when it was secured by our concierge just over two months prior to our arrival date in France. Two months, you say?! That’s a long time! You’re right… but it is absolutely 100% necessary to plan your dinner reservations in Paris months in advance of your trip if you want to eat in the area’s most celebrated restaurants.
Chef Daniel Rose, a native of Illonois, is a master of ingredient-driven cuisine. He treats all his ingredients with the utmost care and respect, and his menu changes weekly as he seeks out and sources the best local markets have to offer. Throughout our meal, every aspect of each plate was masterfully prepared and well-balanced. He was able to pack flavor punches into our meal with his delicious citrus accents and pan sauces.
What follows is a recount of one of the best meals we had in Paris:
I know, I know, it’s been a while. Too long. I’ve been kept pretty busy lately with getting married, having the most amazing gastronomic honeymoon in Paris one could ask for… you know, just a typical July. There are so many pictures, experiences, and memories to share, it is difficult to find a place to start! Here are some posts to look for in the upcoming days/weeks:
• Restaurant Reviews from Spring, Le Chateaubriand, Bistrot Paul Bert, Chez L’Ami Jean, Les Papilles, L’Avant Comptoir, and more!
• The Best of Paris Chocolate
• The Best of Belgian Chocolate
• The Best of Paris Bakeries
• Top 10 Things To Eat in Paris: What Not To Miss Under Any Circumstance
• Top 10 Food Items to Bring Back from Paris
• Going To Paris? What Americans Need To Know
• How To Be A Food Tourist in Paris
• Top 10 Paris Tourist Tips
• The #1 Paris Food Experience Revealed
Holy crap, I’m getting married today! Right now my soon-to-be wife and her maidens are getting their hair and make-up done, so I figured, what better way to start off my day than writing a quick post. Last weekend my buddies and I went down to Atlantic City for the big bad bachelor party. A lot of the guys were excited for late nights of gambling and beverages. I was excited for the Saturday morning round of golf and the massive quantities of food I was to enjoy! Don’t judge. After we played our round of golf, a lot of guys took a nap before dinner. A couple of my brave friends joined me on the food crawl I was waiting for all weekend…