New Year = New Me. A me that eats out at a lot more incredible restaurants I hope! I don't know how I can still think about eating when for the past two weeks all I have done is consume copious amounts of food. However, following on from my post about French cooking I thought I would recommend a handful of my favourite eateries in the City of Light. I will give a bit of a disclaimer - they aren't all French restaurants. My mum and I when we came to view my first flat created a motto: When in Paris, eat tapas. French food is unbelievably good but sometimes you need to mix it up a bit. So let's start where it all began...
La Bodega: This is the very tapas bar that the infamous phrase was created for. I have been half a dozen times now since Mum and I stumbled across this place completely by accident and I have never been disappointed. They have great Spanish wine, patatas aioli that are SUPER GARLICKY but delicious and classical guitar music played live. If you don't mind sitting on the street among clouds of cigarette smoke and cute fluffy dogs then this is the place for you. The staff are super friendly and let you go at your own pace ordering as and when you want to. If you go then you have to order the albondigas (succulent meatballs in a tomato sauce), the calamari and the croquettas with cheese and ham. You may have to roll yourself home rather than walk!
Hero: Another place that Maman Goodbody and I like to frequent. This time it is Korean Fried Chicken. Sounds weird, but hear me out. The décor is super chic thanks to the muted tones and soft lighting which helps the chilled out vibe of the establishment. I love the sticky and garlicky fried chicken with a side of rice and kimchi. Whereas anyone else I have been with orders the super spicy one which is equally scrumptious! Have a cheeky cocktail even if it is just for the name and relax after a long day exploring P-town.
Chartier: If you ever come to visit me then this is where I take you. I won't even apologize for it. Classic French food. Great prices. Hilarious service. What more could you ask for? Well, Mike once asked for a steak haché which is basically a burger without a bun and he was told he couldn't have it because "That was for children not men." Honestly you couldn't make it up. If you want to try snails and classic desserts then you can but if you fancy steak with chips then you can get that too. For a tired evening where you want something quick but tasty with heaps of Gallic panache thrown in for good measure then you can't go wrong with Chartier!
Le Refuge des Fondues: Let's end this piece on a weird note. I shall try and set the scene. Four sophisticated ladies have spent a day swanning around Versailles in a golf cart but to nourish their souls they decide to try out a fondue restaurant recommended to them. It's in Montmartre. How cool, how hip. We walk in to be greeted by a man wearing a Metallica T-Shirt and walls plastered with signatures and graffiti from previous patrons. Two of us have to jump over the table to sit on the other side, helped my Mister Metallica who then poses two questions to us. Red or White? Meat or Cheese? Hoping for the best we go for 4 White 1 Meat and 1 Cheese. He comes back with a plate of meats and cheeses, some bread and four baby bottles of white wine. Yes, you did just read that right. Baby Bottles. Quirky doesn't even describe this place. We munch the nibbles until the main act arrives. Two bubbling cauldrons, one filled with oil to cook the meat in and one of cheese to dunk bread and potato into. It's a hearty meal and I have been back several times after this because it is just so much fun. Plus the limited choice means that everyone relaxes knowing that no one will get a better dish than them, because it is all the same!
Writing about all of that has made me quite peckish now, maybe I'll go out for dinner!