Tag Archives: Le Galopin

Walking Around Belleville

I spent a lovely day last week wandering around the Belleville neighborhood, which felt like a world away from the eighth. Back in the mid-19th century, Baron Haussmann’s makeover of Paris left many slum residents homeless. Throngs of these displaced people fled to Belleville, and today the area is home to many working-class people of all ethnic backgrounds. This is the place to look for those exotic ingredients or spicy peppers, or for authentic ethnic restaurants. Belleville also offers beautiful vistas of Paris without the crowds and tacky souvenir shops surrounding Sacre Coeur.

My first stop was Parc de Belleville. This relatively new park (I think it was opened in 1988) is built into a hillside and is a series of shady paths traversing the hill and stairs going up and down. It was serene on that late morning, with only a few people occupying shady benches and a small group of sun-worshippers having lunch in an open yard. IMG_2397 IMG_2395 IMG_2399 The park was nestled right up against apartment buildings, whose residents no doubt enjoy the view as well as the prime picnic opportunities. IMG_2398 IMG_2400 IMG_2401 And the view!! IMG_2402 Just outside a park exit was this inviting little cafe with a shady terrace. IMG_2407 I took a seat at one of the colorful tables and ordered the cheese and tomato tart. IMG_2403 IMG_2404 And then this happened. Don’t judge. I was climbing hills. I needed my strength. IMG_2405 Just across the street was this adorable building anchored by a boulangerie. I fantasized about living on the top floor. Yes, I would have been able to touch both sides of the apartment at the same time, and my bed would have to be placed diagonally. But I could rig a basket onto a rope pulley and send my money down and then pull a warm baguette or croissant back up through my window! And then I could eat them while admiring my view of the Eiffel Tower. How sweet would that be? IMG_2406 After that lunch, I had some walking to do. IMG_2409 IMG_2410 IMG_2413 I walked a long way up Rue Gambetta, which begins with this gorgeous Art Deco metro station. IMG_2414 IMG_2415 This street borders one side of the Pere Lachaise cemetery and offers a beautiful shady walk. IMG_2416 IMG_2396 IMG_2417 IMG_2419 IMG_2420 The street is also home to many elementary schools like this one. Each has a marble plaque commemorating the Jewish children who were removed from the schools and taken to camps with the cooperation of the Vichy government. It is difficult to visualize those scenes, how terrified and confused those poor children had to have been. IMG_2418 IMG_2424 IMG_2425 IMG_2427 I did not go to Place Sainte-Marthe on this trip to Belleville, but one of our very favorite restaurants is found there, Le Galopin. It’s well worth a trip off the beaten path the next time you are in Paris.

Thanks for visiting!


Filed under Belleville, Le Galopin, Paris, Paris dining

Fun Week With Family

We just said “au revoir” to Mark’s brother and his wife after a whirlwind week of food, drink, and laughter. Here is a brief recap.

On Easter Sunday we drove 35 miles south of Paris to the gorgeous Chateau de Fontainebleau.


The next day we took the train to Reims, where we spent a sunny but breezy day.

We toured the Pommery Champagne House, which was an interesting mix of modern and old.




love these fun "single serving" bottles sold in bars

love these fun “single serving” bottles sold in bars

After a delicious lunch we visited the Reims Cathedral.




The next day we explored the Canal Saint-Martin area of Paris.


That night we ate dinner at Frenchie’s Wine Bar, where we got in line at 6:45 in order to get a table when it opened at 7:00. As always, the small plates and wine were delicious. This little place is worth the early arrival.


Wednesday we walked around the area surrounding the Eiffel Tower and enjoyed an amazing lunch at Au Bon Acceuil.

white asparagus soup

white asparagus soup

We had never experienced a cabaret show in Paris, so that night we went to Crazy Horse for a bit of adult entertainment. No photos were allowed during the show, but this was the stage before it started.


Thursday we wandered up Rue Saint Honore, admiring the windows and doing a little shopping. We then strolled the garden of Palais Royale and the Tuileries on our way home.





Our week ended with a memorable meal at another old favorite, Le Galopin.

This tiny, out-of-the-way place offers a set menu, scrawled and copied on a piece of white paper.



The seven- course menu is always fresh, inventive, and delightful.




On the way home we stopped by Sacre Coeur so they could have one last look at Paris.


At the beginning of the week our guests were shivering in their light coats, and by the end the coats were left at home. Spring appears to have set down her bags at last. Maybe she will stay awhile.IMG_2099


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