Archive for April, 2016


Alsatian Gastronomy in the Shadow of Sacre Coeur

Antoine Westermann’s Alsatian roots shine in all their glory at his bistro-rotisserie, which gasconades the barnyard (or basse-cour) in a simple yet elegantly Parisian fashion. Located in the quaint rue Lepic, just west of Sacré Coeur, le Coq Rico ostensibly represents his attempt to fly the coop from his Michelin-starred existence at the luxury Paris […]

It’s Back! Les Bain Douches Nightclub

New York City had Studio 54, and Paris had its own era-defining, decadent club, Les Bains Douches. The location that served as Paris’ first public baths, in 1885, and counted Marcel Proust among its regulars, was converted into a nightclub in 1978. The pool remained from the former bathhouse and over the next two decades […]

Seventh Heaven

The 7th, the roof terrace bar of the 4-star Terrass Hotel in Montmartre, is a bar with a view. But not just any old view: the 7th floor vantage point that lends its name to the bar offers a spectacular view of Paris, with the Tour de Montparnasse, Les Invalides and the Eiffel Tower, lined up […]

Hipsters Take to Petanque

Whether you call it pétanque or boules, the traditional French game with the shiny silvery balls has made a comeback. It used to be the only people you’d see playing in were old men in berets sipping pastis. Now everyone plays, particularly Parisian hipsters (les Bobos) who don’t have to worry about breaking a sweat. […]

Frogs Love This Dog

The French bulldog is descended from an Asian “mastiff” type of dog, that have a flattened muzzle and a strong jaw, but the race was really developed from the British bulldog.  Mixed with the bulldog brought over to French by British workers around 1850, and bred with the terrier dogs or the “doguin” dogs that […]

Brass Knuckles for Paris

Artist Jessie Kanelos Weiner on one of her watercolor works: Paris was brokenhearted after the November attacks. I had this visual in my head the dark days that followed, but I was worried the idea of brass knuckles was treating violence with violence. But finally, I shared it and was swept away by the response. […]

The Most Elegant Hardware Store

There used to be a few more grands magasins (major department stores) in Paris than there are now. When I first visited long ago, there was even still the Trois Quartiers, a store by Madeleine. It has been through many metamorphoses since then but has never seemed to be commercially successful. There was also the […]

Care for a Deer Heart Salad?

I went to Yard with a friend who told me the chef Nye Smith was famous for his offal at St John’s in London, so I wasn’t surprised to see game and fish on the menu (pigeon, deer heart salad, rabbit, and whole dorade cooked in salt). The gnocchi starter in a doe ragout was […]

The Casino Scene in France

We often think of cities outside the French capital as the places to find casinos. The classic French film Bob Le Flambeur focuses on a glamorous casino in Deauville, north of Paris, while Jacques Demu’s 1963 film La Baie des Angels (Bay of Angels) takes place in Nice. So notable are the French Riviera casinos […]

Sneak Peek at the Brand New Les Halles

A third incarnation of Les Halles is now ready to be unveiled – with a design somewhat implausibly known as the canopée des halles, and supposedly apeing a tropical rainforest. Ahead of the opening (scheduled for April 6), I was given a sneak preview. Conceived by architects Patrick Berger and Jacques Antiziutti, the green structure […]

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