Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Adventures Begin

The next morning we started off the day with a traditional breakfast of croissants from the Boulangerie across the street with a lovely cherry jam that we had picked up at Monoprix the night before. Amazing - oh how I've dreamt of being back in Paris having these most amazing crispy clouds of buttery goodness!

After spending spending the morning at Notre Dame and wandering around St.Germain, we ventured on over to Ile St. Louis, the tiny little island just east of Ile de la Cite (where Notre Dame is located). I had heard that there were a lot of interesting shops there, and had I heard right! It was such a cute neighbourhood (I decided I would live there if I ever HAD to live in Paris - when/if I eventually take the one month intensive course at Le Cordon Bleu, I shall!) with tiny streets lined with really interesting stores.

La Cure Gourmand was this little gem of sunshine, filled with brightly coloured tins and hand-crafted candies, including chocolated-covered olives that looked liked black and green olives, but were actually almonds - so cute!

The patisserie, Calixte, shown here, had a beautiful display of pastries, cakes and, of course, macarons. They had seven flavours, so sadly, I had to buy seven macarons.
After that satisfying purchase, we found THE gelato shop in Ile St. Louis - Amorino . I ordered a dish of coconut (amazing), and my husband got this flowery creation, created from two flavours of gelato - mango and lemon. Could anyone have a more look of pure glee? They formed the petals from some little special scoop - really cool.
After doing a drop & dash of our treasures at the apartment, we headed out for dinner. I had chosen a little restaurant called Chez Leon (5 Rue Isly, 8eme), having researched decent restaurants in Paris for a good price. It was crazy inside - loud, bustling, very tiny, but we spotted an empty table & grabbed it. This would be the equivalent of a diner kind of place with simple food cooked well, visited by locals. I'm pretty sure we were the only tourists there, ergo, English was not spoken. We waited about 20 - 30 minutes to be spoken to at all - the place was being entirely run by one woman, presumably the owner. Eventually we ordered - I chose the rosbif with frites, my husband chosen veal, and after about another 20 or so minutes, we were told they were out :) Roast chicken it was - at this point, it appeared there was not a lot left in the kitchen to serve. When the food finally came it was presented very simply - no fancy garnishes here. The food itself was great - good quality ingredients (the potatoes really do taste different there........all in the soil, so they say) with excellent flavours.

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