A Wintry Weekend in Paris

3/18/2017 04:50:00 PM

Place de la Concorde

Salut! Time to tell y'all about my trip to Paris! On our Christmas trip to Germany, I did my usual mini-break (break within a break?) to Paris, to visit my great friend Clarice and eat all of the things. This time it was a fab two-night trip right at the end of the year. It was my first experience of a Parisian winter, and boy, was it cold! (The trip was from a Thursday to a Saturday, so not technically a weekend, but I do love alliteration, so I'm keeping the title: "A Wintry Weekend in Paris").

It's very easy to get to Paris from Germany, and thanks to our frequent trips back to Germany to visit Sandra's family, I've been fortunate to visit Paris many times over the past six years. (Three times in the last eighteen months!) Despite living halfway around the world, in these last eighteen months, I actually think I've seen Clarice more frequently than some of my friends in Melbourne. Whoops.

I arrived in Paris around lunchtime, and was set to meet Clarice in the early evening after she finished work, so filled my afternoon with some foodie destinations. I actually did all of this on foot - what a way to work up an appetite!

My usual first-stop, coffee-spot 10 Belles, was closed for the Christmas holidays, so I walked west across town to South Pigalle and had lunch at Rose Bakery (46 Rue des Martyrs, Paris 75009). Rose Bakery is a very popular modern British-style cafe, selling brunches, fresh juices and salads, tarts and cakes. They've actually been on my must-visit list for years (ever since I saw their cookbook nearly ten years ago), so I'm glad I finally popped in for a meal! (Back in 2011, Clarice, Sandra and I happened to be strolling through the neighbourhood and had a quick look inside, but didn't actually eat there).

I enjoyed one of their signature square quiches (with broccoli, zucchini and green beans), and a refreshing apple, carrot and ginger juice. I loved the perfectly flaky, buttery pastry! Perfect little lunch.

Broccoli, Zucchini and Green Bean quiche, Apple carrot & ginger juice

The cafe itself only has a small display of cakes. I had a vague memory of there being a big display of salads, tarts and pastries, but I didn't see it this time. (Actually, upon googling, I realise that Rose Bakery has a takeaway shop next door to the cafe, which is where the big displays of food must be. Whoops, totally missed that!)


I can't resist a French loaf cake, and went for the pistachio. So moist and fragrant! The recipe is in their cookbook, and it's on my list to bake.

Pistachio Cake

I hung out here for a bit - it's cosy and comfortable, and the staff were friendly - before walking around the corner to KB Cafeshop (53 Avenue Trudaine, Paris 75009). Aaaaaah! Coffee!

Piccolo at KB Cafeshop

It was nearby, so I'd decided to add Compagnie Générale de Biscuiterie (1 Rue Constance, 75018 Paris) to my itinerary. I'd read about this place on David Lebovitz' blog, and was very excited to come visit. They're a new little atelier, specialising in biscuits. As I approached the shop, I knew I was in the right place, because I could smell the butter! (Thank goodness, because the route from KB Cafeshop to the biscuit shop was pretty much the heart of the red light district, which can get pretty seedy! It was fine while I was there in the afternoon, but I was just not mentally prepared to see so many explicit neon signs so early in the day. Side note - turns out that the French and English languages use a lot of the same words for female anatomy! Educational.)

Compagnie Générale de Biscuiterie

After much umming and ahhing, I bought a little bag of biscuits to take home with me, and will tell you all about them in my next post on Paris. (Stay tuned for "Sweet Treats from Paris"). Spoiler alert: they're fantastic.


On my way from the biscuit shop to my next destination, I happened to walk past the Moulin Rouge. I didn't even realise it would be there until I was waiting to cross the street and noticed that dozens of tourists were taking romantic couple selfies (*eye roll*) in front of something. Then I turned around and saw it. Anyway, here's a (non-selfie) photo!

Moulin Rouge

From here I walked south across town until I got to Galeries Lafayette (40 Boulevard Haussmann 75009 Paris), where I met Clarice so that we could do some food shopping! (We so fancy). I bought a bunch of sweet treats at Gourmet (macarons and chocolates, more details in my next post), and then we went to the grocery section to buy food for dinner! We ended up buying cheese, bread, champagne and a little apple and salted butter confit to go with.

The cheeses are just incroyable.

Blue cheese

Goats Cheese


More cheese!

Then it was back to Clarice's for dinner! She prepared some little fig toasts with foie gras, toasted hazelnuts and a piment d'espelette jelly.

Foie gras on toast fig bread with Gelée de Piment d'Esplette & toasted hazelnuts

And here are the cheeses! We got a slice of a gorgeous nutty comté, a tiny tomme of goats cheese, and (what indulgence), a round of Mont d'Or. (Faced with indecision at the Lafayette cheese counters, I basically thought anything with raw milk would be good, as we can't really get that here in Australia).

Comté, Goats cheese, Mont d'Or, baguette, radishes, toasted hazelnuts, Apple and salted caramel jelly, green salad & pink champagne

Hello, lover.

Mont D'Or

For dessert, Clarice had bought a Jacques Genin Paris Brest! What a treat! You may remember that on my last trip to Paris, I went to the Jacques Genin store on Rue de Varenne to buy one of their famous Paris Brests, only to find out that they didn't sell pastries on that particular day. D'oh! Anyway, on this trip, thanks to Clarice, I got to try it! Woohoo! (In case you didn't know, a Paris Brest is a ring of choux pastry filled with a praline mousseline cream). Jacques Genin's version is covered in roasted hazelnuts and generously filled with a richly flavoured, beautifully piped cream. Gorgeous!

Jacques Genin Paris Brest

The next morning, Clarice made one of her pretty breakfasts - more buttered fig toast, Chemex coffee and yogurt with raspberries. I love her super instagrammable table and all her crockery and accessories. Reminds me that I need to make an effort to use all the different plates and cups I've bought over the years!

Fig toast, Chemex coffee, Yogurt with raspberries

From here, we braved the cold and travelled over to Sadaharu Aoki (56 Boulevard de Port-Royal, 75005 Paris), for our traditional (second) breakfast of matcha croissants. We don't have quite the appetites that we did in previous years, so we shared a matcha and an matcha almond croissant with a pot of tea each. (In previous years we would have added a pastry or two as well!) They were as gorgeous as ever.

Matcha croissant, Almond matcha croissant

We then took a walk up the quaint Rue Mouffetard, where I loved looking at all the seafood displays out in the open. (Yes, that day the maximum temperature was minus-one degree celsius, so it was colder than a fridge!)

Rue Mouffetard

My spidey senses tingled when I saw a new hipster coffee shop, Dose Dealer de Café (73 Rue de Mouffetard, 75005 Paris), and I just had to stop in for a flat white. It was really warm and cosy, and the coffee was great! (Also free wifi).

Dose Dealer de Cafe

Flat White

Slightly further up the road was our lunch destination - La Maison des Tartes (67 Rue Mouffetard, 75005 Paris). Clarice's brother had discovered this cute and cosy little venue on a previous trip to Paris. It was very well priced too - we got a slice of house-made quiche and a drink for 5.20€.

La Maison des Tartes


We then took a walk to the Île Saint-Louis, passing by the Notre Dame on our way.

Notre Dame

And we finally tried something that I've been meaning to try for the past six years - the tarte tatin at the Berthillon Salon de Thé (29–31, rue Saint Louis en l’Ile, 75004 Paris). Berthillon is justifiably famous for their amazing ice-creams, but if you get a chance to pop into the salon de thé, I'd highly recommend it.

Sweet treats at the Berthillon Salon de Thé

The tarte tatin is fabulous! The apples are really, really dark and caramelized, and there's a generous amount of them. Meanwhile, the pastry was just the right amount of crisp. So good! You can pay extra to have a scoop of ice-cream with your dessert - we chose the seasonal marrons glacés (candied chestnut). So good! (If only I'd been hungry enough to have a boule of caramel beurre salé as well!)

Tarte Tatin with marrons glaceé ice-cream

It was a big day of eating! So we went back to Clarice's place to relax and rest up for dinner.

Eiffel Tower funky light thing

We wanted to do one special dinner on the trip. One option was Restaurant Bouillon (47 Rue de Rochechouart, 75009 Paris), who do an amazing popcorn mille feuille, but unfortunately they were closed for the Christmas break. (Next time!) So, for this trip, Clarice and I decided to go to an old favourite, Bistro Paul Bert (18 Rue Paul Bert, 75011 Paris), which we knew we'd love. We've both visited previously - once for me in 2013 with Sandra and her mum (scroll down to the bottom of my Paris 2013 post to see), and Clarice has visited a few times for special occasion meals.

We started with a glass of Champagne each and some garlicky saucisson sec. (Clarice took the liberty of ordering Champagne, and I was more than happy about it!)

Garlicky saucisson sec, Champagne

I'll blog the meal in full, but for today's post let me show you the gorgeous desserts. We had a Grand Marnier soufflé and a Paris Brest (yes, another one). Just quietly, I liked the Paul Bert Paris Brest even more than the Jacques Genin one. It had more of a simple presentation, but had the most amazing silky smooth praline cream. Must order!

Soufflé au Grand Marnier; Paris Brest

The next morning, Clarice kindly made a breakfast to see me off to the station - fluffy pandoro, bircher muesli and coffee. Yum yum! She made it all look so effortless, serious domestic goddess!

Breakfast - Chemex coffee, Pandoro, Bircher Muesli

That was Paris! Thank-you to Clarice (and José and baby Tiago) for being the best hosts!

Read about my previous trips to Paris here:

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  1. I have serious Paris envy! Three times in 18 months .. how wonderful. Everything looks amazing!

  2. Wow that's a lot of time in Paris-how wonderful! I have the Rose cookbook so I'll look up that cake. I made one of their broccoli cakes (yes!) and it was fun and delicious :D



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