To top off our food centric Euro-trip last year that brought us to 12 Michelin stars in 12 days, we made a 2 day stop in Paris. We got greedy — we wanted to hit the top sightseeing destinations while eating as much pastries and yummy food as possible.
Below is a photo centric account of our quest with a recap of the highlights at the end. Hope it will add some ideas onto your Paris itinerary.
Eating = #1: Angelina at 226 Rue de Rivoli
We started the day strong by making our first stop Angelina in Vendome district. It’s an establishment started in 1903 and has been an institution ever since. They are known for their hot chocolate and Mont-Blanc pastry (which they have trademarked).
And there is good reason behind the fame — the hot chocolate tasted like thick melted chocolate that would come out directly from the Willy Wonka chocolate waterfall. On top of their delicious pastries, the atmosphere was equally pleasing. It definitely makes it onto the “must return” list.
Walking it off: Jardin des Tuileries + Seine
We got very lucky with the weather. Our walk through Jardin des Tuileries couldn’t have been more perfect. I wish we made more time in our schedule to sit and relay at the fountain. If I lived here, I could definitely see myself coming on the weekend to read a book or write in the journal while people watching.
Time flew by as we relaxed on the green chairs in the garden. Needing to head towards our lunch reservation, Thorsten nearly had to drag me away from this spot. As we proceeded down the Seine, we encountered equally stunning views as well as the classic sightseeing destinations as we headed towards the 7th arrondissement. After this stroll, I considered the hot chocolate walked off and ready for more food.
Eating: La Table de Akihiro
Driven by a few articles I stumbled onto on the internet (NYT, Paris by Mouth, etc.), we made a reservation to the cozy restaurant for lunch. Boy was it worth it. The seafood just melted in our mouth. It tasted as if everything was sous vide. As we watched the flawless execution in the kitchen, our stomachs definitely got a treat.
WALKING IT OFF: To the Eiffel tower we go
Meandering through the streets in the 7th arrondissement made me feel as if I traveled into Madeline’s world. Getting lost was the goal — and we enjoyed all the scenery that came along with it, including stumbling upon Musée de l’Armée.
Drinking: Eiffel tower
When I visited the Eiffel Tower in 2009 for the first time, I envied the groups of people on the lawn eating, drinking, and enjoying the day. Now that I go back, we made sure we were ready to hang out on the lawn. Although we remembered to bring wine, we forgot cups. It was an adventure trying to buy plastic cups. We were entertained when we ended up paying 5 euros for 2 disposable cups. I would like to think I was leaving room for improvement on the experience for next time 😛
WALKING IT OFF: Destination Arc de Triomphe
After we polished our wine, we strolled around checking out the festivities at Eiffel Tower and made our way through Chaillot to the Arc de Triomphe — checking off many of the must see tourist items. If you are looking to do shopping, this is the prefect time to squeeze it in along Champs-Élysées and the adjacent streets.
EATING: LE CHATEAUBRIAND
After taking a rest at the hotel, we treated our stomachs to a tasting menu at Le Chateaubriand. The taste was just was good as the pictures look.
WALKING IT OFF:Back to Eiffel tower for a light show
We ended the night watching the light show at the Eiffel Tower.
We decided to leave day 2 to chance. Having a list of a few ideas in mind, we set off to indulge our stomachs in whatever looked good.
Start = Food
Aki Boulanger, in the Japanese district, set the day off right. We couldn’t decide which pastry to pick so we got 2 each to taste. If I were to go back, I might have gotten 4 just to myself 🙂
Walking it Off: Louvre
This is a great place to walk off a meal! In the museum, the art seemed endless as you move from one room to the next. Especially on a rainy day, you can spend it entirely getting lost in the Louvre. I remember one of the highlights to my first visit to Paris was sitting by the fountains here and I would go back in a heartbeat.
Eating: Les halles
We decided to leave day 2’s food adventures unplanned so we can see what chance brings us. It did not disappoint as we picked a random restaurant in Les Halles district after we checked out Notre Dame.
More room for dessert: Galeries Lafayette
It’s not typical for us to visit a shopping mall as a destination during any trip. Nevertheless, we heard Galeries Lafayette was worth checking out for the architecture. Although the shopping experience was very crowded, the stained-glass done was stunning. Plus, there was a Pierre Hermé macaron shop in the basement.
Even MORE ROOM FOR DESSERT
Leaving the day unplanned is very dangerous for our waistline. We ended up hoping from one pastry shop to the next. On our way to Jardin du Luxembourg, we passed the Pantheon and ultimately picked up a strawberry tart.
Relaxing in the gardens was very fun, especially watching the kids set off their sail boats in the artificial pond. To be very frank, I wanted to get a sail boat to play with too … but the line was too long.
Time for Afternoon Snack
We couldn’t stand the thought of not having escargot before leaving Paris. So we set off on our next quest to find a side walk bistro that offered escargot to change the pace a little from all the dessert. That place turned out to be Le Comptoir. If I were to go back to Paris, I would do more research in advance to find another escargot place to try.
Mind on the food + Food on the mind
Looking back, I’m amazed at how much food we were able to eat on our last day on our Europe trip. Pâtisserie Gérard Mulot was definitely one of the more memorable ones. When you step in, it was like stepping into a Disneyland for foodies: the colors, smell, selection. The only drawback is that they don’t gave a lot of seating. So we ended up finding a spot by the window to munch down our loot.
After all the food, we wandered through the streets to head back to the hotel and rest before dinner. But we couldn’t resist the windows of Eric Kayser and HAD to make a stop.
Walking it off: Seine, Notre Dame, Sunset
Exhausted from all the eating, we traversed the city back through Notre Dame and enjoyed a great sunset over Pont Neuf to top off our trip. Paris: we will miss you.
- Hot chocolate at Angelina
- Green chairs in Jardin des Tuileries
- Wine on Eiffel Tower lawn
- Strawberry tart in Jardin du Luxembourg
- Sunset over Seine
May your trip be as magical and yummy!