Gwapa Goes to Paris: Our Favorite Spots to Sip & Snack.
So just call me a food blogger already! JK, but seriously. Do eye catching cocktails & deliciously mouth watering meals inspire you like they do me? As many of you may know my now fiancé, Mustafa AKA @arabianpenguin just surprised me with a trip to Paris for my birthday, Christmas & New Years. And you better believe the second I found out where we were going I began reaching out to everyone I knew to collect recommendations and compiled a list of all the places we wanted to wine and dine during our week long stay. I'm not ashamed to say I truly lived to try everyones recommendations & we even discover our very own along the way (& by discovered I mean @arabianpenguin did many hours of scrolling through pictures of food on yelp!) With that it is my absolute pleasure to share with you our top 10 favorite spots to sip & snack in Paris, France + everything you MUST know about and order at each.
MUST KNOW: This restaurant is special and will forever be close to my heart for many reasons. The first being this is where @arabianpenguin and I went post engagement to celebrate and the second being this spot is rumored to be getting it's first Michelin star soon (within months of opening!) so snagging yourself a reservation while you still can is crucial & third is of course those Eiffel tower views. The aesthetic is beige of all textures & just a classic FRENCH vibe. Be prepared to eat slow spend fast because while the dishes and drinks are priced high they are worth every single penny.
MUST TRY: Oysters, Caviar, Chef's Special Fish Assortment (this was my favorite!), Octopus & a round of Cosmos (we ordered these especially to celebrate & they did not disappoint!)
MUST KNOW: We literally walked to this bakery from our air bnb every single morning (& some afternoons!) to grab a tiny cappuccino & whatever fresh baked good caught our attention in the window that day. It's got a nostalgic energy to it, like it hasn't changed one bit since the day they opened. The staff encourages you to order quick (over the counter) since there is always a line so we found it best to point to the items since translating took too long and always opted to try a few things we could share between us. Heading outside to open our bag of baked goodies was always a delightful surprise!
MUST TRY: Raspberry eclairs and almond croissant, a cappuccino & their daily special. We really wanted to grab a baguette sand which and bottle of bubbly to go eat by the Seine River but never had the time - would highly recommend as an inexpensive yet delicious lunch!
MUST KNOW: We ubered directly to Montmartre from an early morning tour at The Lourve & this was our first stop so we arrived cold and hungry. It is a dark teeny tiny hole in the wall pub type joint with maybe 15 seats so the food (& drinks!) come out quick. I would recommend this spot pre exploratory adventure around the town of Montmartre where you will find the perfect artists shops for souvenirs that don't feel oh-so-tacky.
MUST TRY: We ordered the foie gras, escargot (M's first time!), french onion soup, beef bourguignon & house cognac. We were told by many friends actually that the salads were amazing and a must try as well just weren't in the mood for a salad that day...
MUST KNOW: Owned by the same restaurant group as Girafe, Monsieur Bleu also shares views of the Eiffel tower, drool worthy decor & elevated french staples. Recommend trying for a late lunch (the golden light was dreamy) & finding a good spot to people watch as the local business men & women come to feast & relax off their work day woes.
MUST TRY: We ordered Negronis, Rock shrimp & Tuna Tataki (comes with an avocado, dill and mint salad that I'm still dreaming about) and steak with coconut rice.
MUST KNOW: It's obviously inside The Ritz which is a must see in and of itself. They are open 365 but don't take reservations so get there 15 min. before they open to avoid an hour (or even longer!) wait. But let me tell you once you enter you will be smitten with the nostalgia. The menu looks like a newspaper (ask if you can buy one or take one home to frame for a memory/menu wall!) and every single drink on it is PREMIUM in ingredient quality, flavor profile, balance and craft. They also provide each table with light snacks that are addictive and delish!
MUST TRY: The Worlds Best Martini (SUPER strong! Don't order more than 1 but do order 1!) & Heirloom Tomato Martini (it sounds gross but literally blew my mind, the taste was all in the smell - BIZARE!), the serendipity. We also ordered the hot dogs which were tiny but a really delicious treat to pair with the cocktails.
MUST KNOW: This was the first stop we went our first day in Paris. It's touristy as it's right across from the Eiffel tower and is jam packed both night and day but they have the most extensive tea menu and over the top breakfast. My mouth is watering just thinking about all their different rich and creamy egg dishes. Try to snag a seat outside so you can watch the Eiffel tower in all her beauty while you dine. They also have beautiful desert boxes you can grab & take to go!
MUST TRY: Your favorite tea - their selection is limitless, a chocolate croissant to split (or not) while you wait for your food & croquet madam.
MUST KNOW: Best Italian food in Paris, but you must make a reservation! The walk-in line wraps around the block 35 minutes after opening. Once you're inside the tables are small but there are lots of fun areas to dine. I would recommend the bar right when you walk in for the best ambiance. Food arrives super quick and portions are on the larger side so be ready and come hungry!
MUST TRY: CBD Old Fashion, Buffalo Burrata, Beef Carpaccio (it is the size of the table) & Truffle Pasta - to this day I do not stop dreaming about this truffle pasta.
MUST KNOW: TBH I wouldn't have known anything about this spot if it wasn't for Mustafa and my dad who informed me that McDonalds all over the world have different menus OR that we were hungry on Christmas Eve and everything else was closed. SO we ordered Uber Eats, binge watched Emily in Paris & drank a bottle of champagne in our jammies and it was one of my favorite snuggly holiday memories!
MUST TRY: Croque McDo, le P'tit Fondu, Potatoes (different than fries in that they are thick cut) and we ordered one of each of the sauces, just to try.
MUST KNOW: We never actually went here but it became some what of an inside joke on our trip because it was right across the street from where we were staying and when we first walked past it we both thought it was the most adorable restaurant and kept saying to each other "we can't wait to eat there!" "I bet we'll go there like every night!" then for one reason or another night after night including the credit card machine being broken and them only accepting cash - we we never able to eat there so if you go to Paris, please go to Di Vino and let us know your MUST TRYS!