The Ultimate Parisian Food Log
Hello, it’s me. Not Adele, but moi: Roselinde. Who’s blog do you think this is anyway? I am here to surprise you with the most ultimate Parisian Food Log that ever existed in the history of the human race. That may be a slight exaggeration but you can’t sue me for my claims. Taste is not debatable, as we Dutchies like to say (Dunglish alert). Back to the story. Last week, I was lucky enough to go on a 2-day trip with the Paris Tourist Office and Thalys. I charged my camera battery to its fullest capacity and successfully executed my self-imposed mission of capturing (almost) everything I ate. I’ve been doing travel food logs for a while now, but I can confidently say that this one is on another level.
Breakfast on the Train
The morning of the first day I got up at 4:30 to catch the first train from Breda to Rotterdam. I wasn’t even mad about it. I boarded the Thalys at Rotterdam central station and off I went on my Parisian adventure. It was nice to travel by train for a change. It was actually really relaxing not having to take off my shoes at customs or worry about getting motion sickness. I recently discovered that I get very nauseous on smaller passenger planes (details inappropriate for a travel log about delicious food). I snapped a picture of my breakfast on board the Thalys! Any day that starts with a croissant and/or appelflap is bound to be a success. The train ride from Rotterdam to Paris took about 2.5 hours. You get off at Paris Nord and step out right into the city.
Champeaux by Alain Ducasse
After admiring the newly renovated Les Halles shopping mall, which reopened April 5, 2016, it was time for lunch at Champeaux. The brand new “Champeaux” brasserie by Alain Ducasse is located in Les Halles as the flagship restaurant of the mall. Ducasse is best known for his international chain of Benoit Bistros in cities like Paris, Tokyo and New York. He was the first chief who owned three different restaurants around the world with three Michelin stars.
The Champeaux restaurant has a new concept: “the brasserie of the 21st century”. The interior certainly looked very modern and retro-inspired. I would personally describe it as “industrial chic bordering on hipsterlicious”. The waiters were even wearing asymmetrical denim aprons. We caught a quick glimpse of the chef on duty: Bruno Brangea. Thankfully, he happily agreed to pose for a photo. My personal favourite at the restaurant was the pistachio soufflé with warm caramel on the inside (€12). Does it not look like the perfect fluff of eggy delight? Several courses can quickly add up, but you can definitely match the prices to your budget. The dishes at Champeaux range between 6-32 euros.
Mariah Carey and Macarons
This was definitely a new experience for me. I attended an arena concert by Mariah Carey at the AccorHotels Arena. It’s the biggest venue in Paris and the largest arena in France. It was amazing and I’m not ashamed to say it! I was a bit worried at first, because I was afraid I wouldn’t known enough of Mariah’s music, but she sang most of her hit songs. You never realise how many songs actually stick around in your head until you hear them again. Prince had passed away that day, so she also sang a song for him as a tribute. Before the concert started we relaxed at the lounge and had authentic French macarons for dessert. One of them tasted like marzipan!
After the concert I got back to the Renaissance Paris Republique Hotel, where I was staying for the night. It’s a brand new hotel that just opened, so everything was still sparkly and shiny. I got back so late that I didn’t really get to use it much, but my room even had a big balcony. I quickly washed up, changed into my pajamas, and went to bed. I fell asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow and slept like a baby until the alarm went off next morning. It might have been because I got up at 4:30 in the morning the day before, but it usually takes me at least 30 minutes to fall asleep. Day 2 started with breakfast at the hotel. I took a quick snapshot of my breakfast with my phone. I had a brioche and hot chocolate milk!
Les Fables de la Fontaine
Last but not least: Les Fables de La Fontaine is an updated restaurant in the chic 7th district of Paris. It’s the same district where you can find the Eiffel Tower and Orsay Museum. I had to board the Thalys back to Rotterdam around 5 in the afternoon, so thankfully we had plenty of time to have lunch before heading to the train station. The restaurant has a longstanding reputation for its excellent seafood, but has recently been turning heads with its new chef Julia Sedefdjian.
Sedefdjian (21) is not only one of the few women decorated with a Michelin star, she is also the youngest Michelin chef in France. I asked her how old she was and she said she was born in 1994. She’s a year younger than I am! Well, if that doesn’t motivate you to work harder, I don’t know what will. I can see why she’s already a Michelin chef. I don’t think I’ve ever consumed anything prettier than that lemon shortbread. I almost felt like a criminal when finally convinced myself to eat it. Don’t be too alarmed by the Michelin star, the prices have recently been reduced by almost 50%. The lemon shortbread costs €10, for example.
In a brief interview after lunch Sedefdjian shared that she was initially only interested in crêpes (I completely understand), but still decided to go to culinary school when she was 14. That’s when she got hooked on the culinary arts. When she was asked whether she has had to overcome many obstacles as a woman in professional kitchens, she replied “no”: “I’ve never had any problems, it’s a new generation.” A big yay for gender equality!
That is all! I hope you enjoyed my Parisian food log. Can I just ask you one thing: are you not proud of me how this time 50% of my diet did not consist of crêpes? My personal record is eating four crêpes in three days time. I feel like this food log really shows how I’ve grown as a person.