Having a blackberry is more or less like being kidnapped by the aliens and having a microchip
installed behind your ear, you know that they know where you are and there is no excuse and no hiding. I had it for he past week and it was a terrifying experience.
I got into my first trip to Paris after the launch of the new faster Eurostar and the new re-vamped St Pancras station opening, two hours and fifteen minutes can be an eternity if you use the time to reply to an infinite number of email and each flashing envelope on the screen makes you jump in your seat.
So was this a week of hard work and modern days slavery? Well just partly.
I enjoy Paris and go fairly often, even this time after ten hours work and when my thumb was about to fall off (yes the BB again) I still had the energy to go out, and exhausted the day after I never regretted it!
Paris has been difficult for me in the past as it is hardly a paradise for vegetarians, and even if there is a great deal of bakeries and ethnic restaurants I always felt like I was just filling myself with bread and cous cous and not much else.
But something is changing!As soon as I arrived at la Gare du Nord a group of dreadlocked-pierced people were giving food away to the commuters.
When I approached them the lovely girl that handed over the dahl told me that the food was végétalienne (vegan) and made with the supermarket donations (of ingredients near the expiring date).
they are part of FOOD NOT BOMBS how could I disagree?
was this really happening in Paris? In the country of the croque-monsieur and Beef Bourguignon?
The first night I went to one of my favourite restaurants: Le Potager du Marais, it is in fact located in the best area, it’s cheap delicious and the atmosphere is so great, I needed to book as he place is minuscule, if I was in Paris with a non-vegetarian I would choose this place for sure as their veg dishes are delicious, also they have great spelt and barley beers and good wines. I liked the fact that the waitresses spoke English, Italian and Greek!
22 Rue Rambuteau
A good snack in the afternoon in the Marais could be at the Victoire Supreme du Coeur especially if you don’ mind a bit of rudeness from the staff (maybe I was just unlucky?).
27-31 Rue du Bourg Tibourg
My favourite peaceful island to unwind is a macrobiotic place, where the food is delicious and clean and it works on your body when you have been really working hard and talked all day and there are no fashion people on sight…
Au Grande Appetit
9 Rue de la Cerisaie
You can drink as much Japanese tea as you like and even if you eat a lot you will not spend more then 17 euros. I loved their delicate petit assiette that is a complete and balanced meal that made me feel immediately home.
The ladies that run the place are very friendly and there is even a Japanese scenographer passionated about Italian theatre that works there part time as the food is soooo good!
The dessert are delicious too. In line with the macrobiotic principles don't expect a fancy restaurant but a simple and pleasant one.
A bizarre place is The Green Garden, the place is a Chinese specialized in Mock meats located in the China town of Paris. It is not central and when I booked it through my hotel (my French is rather poor) the lady at the reception gave me a strange look but I just ignored her and kept my eyes on the infernal device (BB if you were wondering)
20 rue National (M porte d'Ivry)
I visited the place as it was reviewed on the beautiful Chez Pim blog, the location is really unappealing but the owner is the nicest person and the food is really really good (if you like Chinese of course)
Much more convenient is the Vietnamese Tien Hiang restaurant in the Bastille area also specializes in mock meats but as that’s really not my favourite thing I ordered a fresh soup, and what arrived is like the soup I always dream of when I think Asian food. Lots of different ingredients, quite filling and superhot, it is exactly what I would expect to get at Wagamama (that is sadly always below my expectation). You don't get any cheaper then this in Paris and it is a cheerful simple place just 10 minutes walk from Bastille.
92 rue du Chemin Vert
Tanks to the friends that make Paris always a great place to be! That took me to the theatre, made me laugh, and to the ones that I met as a coincidence(!)