A day in the Bastille neighborhood:
I never thought I could be repulsed by food. Until yesterday. Yesterday I tried bone marrow for the first time. We went to a very adorable typically French bistro, Chez Paul, and since it was on the menu it seemed like the right time. I was expecting a broth or something to slurp, instead this is what I got:
Pieces of bone with gelatin, flabby pieces of lard in the middle with sea salt on the side and some toast. I felt nervous. I took a piece of lard and slabbed it onto some dry toast with a dash of salt on top and went for it. It was so buttery and SO rich, the kind of rich that makes your stomach turn. I went in for a 2nd taste just to be sure of what I was feeling, and it was confirmed. I could not eat another bite. I couldn’t even look at it after that, I felt physically ill. I commend and respect the tradition and I think it’s wonderful to use every bit and piece of the animal. But I could not do it. Grandma and mom refused to try it, even when I tried to bribe them with beer. Luckily I ordered a side of French onion soup – it is delicious here. Simply to die for. They melt a half wheel of cheese on top, which naturally satisfied my foodie fix. You can’t win ’em all, but you sure can try.
And what followed lunch was this:
Paris has a Magnum pop-up store (there are also locations in NYC, London and Berlin- that I know of) which you can build your own magnum. For 5 euro you chose vanilla or chocolate ice cream, with a hardshell of either white, milk or dark chocolate + 3 toppings of your choice. If you love magnums, you must go while in one of these major cities. It was a nice change from gelato 😛
We didn’t just eat ALL day.. After my morning run in Luxembourg gardens we perused the market at the bottom of the hill from our apartment on the way to the Bastille neighborhood where we walked the “high-line.” It is 4.2 km long park above the city, originally an old railroad track from 1859.
We also went to Victor Hugo’s Paris apartment.
He lived in a part of an old Palace with a nice little park in the center grounds.
And on Sunday we went to the Musee D’Orsay. It’s free on the first Sunday of every month and it just so happened to be first Sunday! We went straight up to the 5th floor to view the impressionist pieces. Musee D’Orsay holds one of the largest Impressionist collections in the world.
After the museum we walked across the bridge to the right side of the Seine and had lunch in the Tuileries garden.
We walked through the garden to Place de la Concorde, one of the major squares in Paris (where Marie Antoinette was beheaded in 1793) onto Champs Elysees toward the arc. We had to stop for Starbucks of course.
America is my country and Paris is my hometown. -Gertrude Stein.