The itinerary for our Parisian honeymoon was clear: carbs + wine + carbs + wine + repeat. I would have considered it a major miss if we didn’t indulge while visiting a city known worldwide for its flawless food. We were on a mission: find the finest shops packed neatly along the cobblestone streets.
Let me reiterate what so many made clear to me – you can’t go wrong with food in Paris. Pop in to any café or restaurant and you’ll find a meal or treat that far outweighs its American competitor. That being said, as we made our way through the artfully tangled streets of the city we definitely found some places worth noting.
This was by far my favorite spot in Paris. Revered by locals, each pastry is a work of art, spectacularly delicious, and affordable. The sweets and baguettes were wonderful and the chef creates a flawlessly flaky pain au chocolat that we stopped by to grab each morning.
It’s common to see a line out the door but don’t let this deter you – it moves very quickly. As we shuffled in to the small space though there was a slight sense of urgency to call out what we wanted when it was our turn, so have your order (and euros) ready.
Delicate and bright macaroons are hardly hard to find in Paris. We saw them EVERYWHERE so I’ll admit I was a bit disheartened when multiple Parisians suggested we check out the famed Ladurée shop to pick up this cultural staple. I was hoping to find a hidden gem but let me tell you, there’s a reason Ladurée sits firmly at the top of most lists.
The feminine shop made its debut in 1862 and is a treat in itself if you’re into girlie things. The pretty pastel pastries are a bit on the pricey side, but I’d definitely go back. If you do check out it out – don’t skip the rosewater flavor – the light and sweet taste was unlike any I’ve ever had.
We stopped in this café with a photographer friend who touted it as the best hot chocolate in all of Paris. She wasn’t lying. This was not your heat and stir Nestle hot chocolate we’ve grown accustom to at home. No, no. Served in a beautiful silver container, this smooth treat tasted as though someone simply melted down a rich chocolate bar, added some cream, and voila! An impeccable solution to a cool, dreary morning. This one also fell on the pricier side, but sits just across the street from an unmatched view of the Eiffel Tower.
If you’re looking for high-quality charcuterie plates in Paris, Fromagerie Danard delivers. You absolutely need a reservation if you want to experience the gourmet cheeses, meats, and wine this little shop near the Louvre serves, but it was the clear highlight of the trip for my husband.
We opted to let our server pick his favorite French options and he suggested a bottle of wine that paired perfectly with the food. Bonus: He gave me the best answer to how Parisians all stay so skinny despite, you know, all the bread and wine.
“Well for one, we walk everywhere which you Americans just do not do. We may eat a lot of breads and sweets and believe wine should be had every night – but the breads and sweets we eat are fresh. America doesn’t do fresh.”
If eating fresh means I can mimic a French diet all the time, count me in.
I’ve already been shamed by foodie friends for putting this on here. Why eat at an Italian restaurant in Paris? Because. Because it is really, really good. Pizza, pasta, bruschetta – East Mamma has it all. Located in Bastille, the welcome is warm and the food is remarkably fresh. Evening service starts at 7:30 so make sure you get there early to put your name on the list because there will be a line weaving around the building even before the dinner doors open.