Tag Archives: Food

food and wine and mixers

Paris loves its salons.  It seems that every weekend there are several of them held at a mammoth facility called Paris expo Porte de Versailles.  I can’t begin to describe the scope of this place.  It consists of many (8-10?) enormous halls which house expos of all types.  Last April we went there for the marathon expo, which is where runners picked up their packets and vendors sold running paraphernalia.  A few weekends ago we were invited to attend a food and wine expo held there.  It was very similar to those held at home, but was interesting to me because the products were from specialty regions of France and Italy.  There was a large crowd around the platform where a recent winner of France’s Top Chef (also called “Top Chef”) was filming a TV segment of some kind and also signing autographs.  It was kind of weird to have no idea who she was, while people around me were gazing at her with rapt adoration.  She was pretty cute, but I bet she doesn’t have an amazing house in the Hamptons and a posse of beautiful , gay, rich  friends like Ina does.

In addition to food and wine, there were also products like special salts, spices, and olive oils.  We bought a bottle of Italian olive oil that our friends recommended.  I never have been able to discern much difference in olive oils, but perhaps I will learn.


I loved these vibrant spices.

An array of gorgeous spices














The cheeses,meats, olives, and pastas were so tempting.  Hooray for free samples!

I can't even imagine how much all that cheese is worth

delicious parmesan cheese










care for a little sausage?

more gorgeous cheese










not sure about this vendor--selling more sausage, maybe?

I love these colorful mixers!

I couldn't resist these baby Frenchies taking their little class.. You go, Julian!











A perfect outing for the foodie that I am- and our friends who invited us didn’t even know of my obsession with all things culinary!  I return for another salon on Thursday.   Can you guess what it is?  Hint: it’s edible and someone in my household shows no control in its presence.


Have a good Tuesday, my friends!


















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Filed under cooking

A little something for everyone

Description: Coffee cortado (An latte art exam...

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My parents and I strolled around the first arrondissement and stumbled upon countless parks and squares with the requisite fountains and general fabulosity to which one gets kind of numb after awhile.

We installed ourselves at a sidewalk table on a cafe in front of a theater called La Comedie Francaise and savored cups of coffee and the bustle of rue Saint Honore.  An interesting note about coffee here- coffee with cream in it (which the French never drink after breakfast) is twice the price of black coffee.  Mom and I have decided that the “cafe allonge” , which is basically espresso in a larger cup with water added to it, tastes exactly like the black coffee we drink at home.  How unusual for me to prefer the cheaper variety of anything.

I took Mom to a ceramics shop that my friends and I went nuts over when we were here in April.  It’s hard to capture the charm with my camera because the shop is very small and snakes back to an even smaller room.  The shop is called  Astier de Villatte  The dishes are made in Paris and are to die for.

This link will show you infinitely better pictures of the shop and the dishes.

Here is a picture of the bowl I bought myself for our wedding anniversary back in April.  Mark wasn’t really all that into the bowl, but he was happy to be relieved of gift-buying duty .  And I love, love, love it.

That night we tried a restaurant recommended by a friend of my sister’s called Les Papilles (which I thought meant “butterfly” but in fact means “tastebuds”).   It was in one of my favorite neighborhoods near the Luxembourg Gardens, and we took a cab in order to enjoy the scenery and not be smashed into the metro at rush hour.

Like many Paris restaurants we have tried and loved, it was tiny and full of personality.  Bottles of wine are lined up along the wall, and we were told to go select a bottle or two to go with our meal.

Les Papilles  prepares only one menu a night, so one would be advised to check on the offering if one is a picky eater.  It was so nice not to be forced to make any difficult menu decisions (which often are more of the  “what the hell does that mean?”  variety than the “hmmm- what should I choose?” variety) and they brought out our food in large dishes set in the middle of the table. Voila!

Delicious little mound served in bowl before soup added

Words cannot describe how delicious this parmesan soup tasted

Amazingly creamy, buttery polenta and pork tenderloin

The brie was a bit stronger than we are used to- I think only my dad ate it.

cold dessert concoction went down easy

The remnants of a great evening!

This is a terrible picture of the restaurant, but it gives a glimpse of the colorful tile floor and the  width of the restaurant.  We were at a round table at the very back, which was perfect.

And now, a little reward for those of you who have read this entire post!  One of the more entertaining parts of the evening- the large movie poster hanging next to our table.  Vive la France!!


Filed under Paris dining, Paris outings, shopping