Saturday, March 5, 2011

In Paris day 1

*cue the french-sounding accordian music* 

I made it!!  Bienvenue a Paris!  Close your eyes past the industrial apartment sprawl that you look at on your taxi ride into Paris because once you've seen the sign for the 18th Arondissement, you've really arrived!  The magnificent soccer stadium is a teaser but the reality hits when the Eiffel Tower makes her debut.

I booked a hotel in the upscale neighborhood of Saint-Germaine.  My hubby was waiting for me with a delicious cup of cafe americain in the lobby of the K and K Cayre Hotel on the rue du Bac.  There really is no more convenient place.  As it turns out, we are actually here during Paris Fashion Week (I know, I could just die!!) AND it's the weekend of the Paris Semi-Marathon.  For those of you who don't know us, well, I'm on my 15th half-marathon. If I ran this race, not only would I have the accomplishment of running a half in Paris but I'd also have a parisian medal for my medal wall!! Sadly, the race was sold out in December but that may not mean we're out.  We're looking to see if they have a craigslist equivalent.  We'll see what we can do.  In the meantime, we get to listen to the team of make-up artists staying at our hotel complain about the "foundation" sessions they had to suffer through at some runway show.  We're keeping up on the juicy gossip about the John Galliano firing from Dior!!  Not to mention, we get to see all of the blondes with tints of light pink in their hair.  There was also a young woman with the side of her head shaved and dyed like a cheetah print.  It's a look I may have to ask my hairstylist about.  If only they knew what I'd do for a ticket to a show!!??

After a much needed nap, shower and another cafe americain, we decided we're very hungry!  Evan was in charge of dinner plans.  He chose this amazing little place in the Latin Quarter called "Le Vin Qui Dancez" or The Dancing Wine, I think. 

We've decided to make ourselves experts on the Metro.  The station is right outside our door and after two change overs we were just a few blocks away.  We briskly walked past the Pantheon and the Sorbonne.  We made our way down to rue de Saint Jacques to this adorable and cozy place with an amazing wine selection.  Evan chose our opening wine, a delicious and crisp 2004 Vouvrey Sec from Vignoble de Brisse Barre.  Evan said he could taste the cold alpine water that fed these grapes.

I decided we didn't need a huge dinner but rather a couple of warm appetizers with more wonderful wine.  The wine menu was hilarious.  Check it out:

For dinner we chose a delicious pumpkin veloute with bacon mousse and chestnut chips that just metled in my mouth.  We also had a Ravioli du Daphine with a basil cream and shaved Parmesan cheese.  The sommalier recommended we try an outstanding Sancerre Rouge that quickly eclipsed the food.  We didn't know they made Sancerre in red?! Who knew the french had perfected such a delicious alternative to Pinot Noir??  We were getting full of food but we couldn't pass up trying the melted Brie cheese with truffle oil.  I don't usually go nuts for Brie but this was outstanding.  They served it in a little ramekin with a typical selection of fresh bread.  The sommalier brought over glasses of this fabulous Saint-Emilion Grand Cru that made me want to cry it was so good.  The wine went from being outstanding to extra-terrestrial as it sat and opened up in my glass.

I honestly didn't think I could eat another bite and then the sommelier came up to check on us.  She asked if we'd like dessert.  I told her I was so full and we also came to their establishment without reservations.  The restaurant was starting to quickly fill up.  She said, "don't worry about anything other than your own pleasure."  Well...that just left us speechless!  Quickly it has become our trip motto!  This is why we love France!  Now we couldn't turn down dessert.  She recommended their tiramisu because it's served with a little shortbread from Northern France.  She suggested a pairing with a new wine we hadn't heard of, Corbrieres Mazerac from the Domaine de la Bouysse, a 2007 vintage.  Can I just say???  Outstanding...the tiramisu was incredible.

After dinner, we asked our waitress about "cool" places to go where, as 40-somethings we wouldn't stand is Paris Fashion Week!!  She had no clue.  Turns out, the area we were in is pretty quiet on Friday night.  We decided to take the Metro back to the hotel and ask our new favorite concierge, Denis.  Thank goodness for him!  He recommended this place called Cafe Mabillon.  It was a great last call for us.  Mash-ups of Pitbull and Rihanna mixed with another delicious glass of a 2005 Haut-Medoc.  Could it get any better?  The crowd was a comfortable mix of 20's to 40's.  We felt right at home.

As I write this my hubby is fast asleep in our luxurious bed.  I'm wide awake because it's 5pm in San Diego.  Ugh!  So, here I am hoping to persuade my friends and family to consider Paris on your next vacation!  It really is a magical place.  I think we're headed to the Musee d'Art moderne de la Ville de Paris.  I can't wait!  Bon soir, mes amis!

1 comment:

Kim Kelly said...

I'm considering!!!
So glad you posted!! We've been thinking about you since you left. All sounds amazing!!! So glad you are having this time away, it does wonderful for you outlook.
Need food pics, though to be complete... ;)
Enjoy!! Can't wait to read the next installment. Thanks for including us!!