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Place we're curious about ... Paris


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#1 Chambolle

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Posted 05 October 2011 - 03:37 PM

I like to eat (and drink).

But I don't like to figure out where to eat (and drink).

Actually, it's not that I don't like to figure out where to eat (and drink) ... it's really that I'm just too busy (lazy?) at the moment.

But I do like the convenient concept of crowd-sourcing.

You guys read more about this restaurant stuff than I. You guys track restaurants like I track Netflix. Anyway, I'm too busy watching Netflix to find the time to find the tables to find myself seated at. Aidez-moi!

Hence, that's where you all come into play. Exciting, isn't it?

What places are you curious about in Paris? What new-ish places would you be eating at if you were here right now? What's good eats in October?

Imagine you had a personal slave who might be willing to follow up on your every dining desire and who would then give you the thumbs up or thumbs down on his aventures ... where would you send said slave ?

But remember, you might also have to make a decent case for the place. You might need to supply a link or two to get your slave salivating and motivated.

In other words ...

Help Chambo fill his gullet.

#2 voyager

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Posted 09 October 2011 - 02:27 AM

I thought this was what we paid you for. <_<

#3 Chambolle

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Posted 09 October 2011 - 11:40 AM

All true. All true.

However, unlike most people who bitch and moan that they are underpaid, I fully appreciate my wages here and fear that others might consider me grossly overpaid for my mouthfuls meanderings.

Hence, in this difficult economic environment, I'm trying to get creative and show some initiative and expand my services before I get axed by mouthfuls middle management.

And no, I'm not angling for a raise (at least, not just yet).

I've opted to extend my stay here til Halloween so don't be afraid that any good suggestions will go to waste. They won't.

But don't think Chambo ain't a good negotiator.

I've decided to withhold all France Info until you fine people start coming thru in a big way.

I got stacks of reports ready to file that are piled so high that I can barely see the view out my office window.

I ain't telling you squat about MaSa (Paris, not New York) or Pottoka or a myriad of other places until you all start coming thru. I'm not telling you squat about returns to Sola, Saturne, Septime and 3*s until you all start coming thru. I ain't telling you squat about Merce's latest lingerie and other coffee-related intrigue until you all start coming thru. And I'm not just holding back on Paris. I ain't telling you squat about a full handful of Michelin-starred or soon to be starred restos in wine country that most of you have never even heard of. And they were darn good. And I ain't telling you squat about tastings in Burgundy with Bernstein (that's Olivier - ohhhhh, you never heard of him, eh??). Squat about tastings with Jacques Carillon and how the domaine is being divided par les freres. Squat about tasting with Anne Gros, Ghislaine Barthod and Mugnier. Yes, Frederic Mugnier succombed to Chambo. I scored that tasting the same frickin' day after being told 4 times in a row that they absolutely positively don't take appointments during vinification. Chambo's reality distortion field was set to 11 for that interaction ("Look, I'm fuckin' Chambo. I own this g*d d**n village and I'm meeting with him. You got that? It's just as simple as that. Now, either give me an appointment during daylight hours or I'm going to storm the Chateau at night. You decide!") They offer and I agree to 15 minutes of his time. Like anyone on the planet will want to walk away from Chambo after 15 minutes of feeling his force! Ya, right. An hour and a half later, Frederic is thanking me for coming. I'm in there for the rest of my life. Zero problems. Awesome conversation. We bonded.

Look, I'm not one to brag so I ain't even gonna mention that although Le Comte didn't let me in this time (I called the same day, once again - I just don't understand that winemaker Francois Millet could possibly not want to get in his car and drive back to Chambolle to meet with Chambo), I have been guaranteed entrance to heaven the domaine the next time I'm back in mon village natal. Nobody effs with Chambo on his home court. Nobody. Not Kobe, not de Vogue. (Although Roumier is proving to be one bad-ass son of a bitch! If need be, I'll start spreading rogue rumeurs de Roumier until they realize who they wrestling with. Nobody but nobody denies Chambo his birthright. Got it?)

Okay, where were we ... oh yeah ...

Do any of you fine folk have any Paris suggestions?


P.S. I'll have you know that your mutinous lack of effort forced us to eat poitrine de grouse et lievre a la Royale at Le Repaire de Cartouche last night. You think that was enjoyable?

Stop making me suffer. Have a heart. Throw me a bone. Throw me a lousy bone, you bloody bastards.

#4 Rail Paul

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Posted 09 October 2011 - 06:05 PM

There's an interesting article by the NYT's (former) Frugal Traveler about his intention to get lost in Paris. Not visit any former haunts, avoid familiar places, and seek a new Paris. Although he re-discovered lots of old places, new places emerged at every turn.

But as I prepared for a weeklong visit in early September, I didn’t want to just return to my favorite places and wallow in nostalgia. I wanted to see if it was possible to re-experience Paris as if for the first time, to be amazed by the reality of the place instead of comforted by its familiarity. Because seeking out the “new” in Paris is problematic in a city where change comes grudgingly, if at all, I set my sights on the yet-unfamiliar. How could there not be delightful restaurants, art galleries, little-known immigrant pockets and underground jazz clubs I’d never discovered?

(snip)

But the next day I figured it out. My legs rested (if still restless), I marched north up to Montmartre, the hilltop 18th Arrondissement neighborhood famous for windmills, cabarets and the Sacré-Coeur basilica. The sun was out and the air was cool, and though I thought I knew Montmartre, I kept finding minor-key surprises, like the high, serene walls around the Cimetière Montmartre and the plaques identifying the former homes of famous composers (here Berlioz, there Satie). When I rounded a corner onto the Rue St.-Vincent, a peaceful lane that ran up past the Clos de Montmartre vineyard, I had a flash: This is the street from that Yves Montand song I love! (I’m no scholar of postwar chansons; I heard it on the “Rushmore” soundtrack.)

So when, a few minutes later, I spied a storefront called Studios Paris advertising short-term rentals, I made a decision. Wandering Paris was fun; carrying all my belongings with me, rain or shine, was less so. But an apartment would be more than a glorified storage locker or a spot for an afternoon nap — it would be a little corner of Paris to claim as my own. Into Studios Paris I walked.

ONE hour later, I was looking out from the sole window of the Eagle’s Nest, my newly renovated seventh-floor garret, at what might be the best view of Paris in Paris. From Montreuil in the east to the Bois de Boulogne, it was unobstructed: the towers, the domes, the mansard rooftops, the slight sinuous suggestion of the Seine. For the next six days, I would look at this view every morning as I drank my coffee. I’d look at this view at sunset, after returning from my wanderings for a shower, a rest and a glass of wine. I’d watch it in the driving rain, and at midnight, when searchlights spun around the Eiffel Tower. The apartment itself might be only 150 square feet, with a private toilet out in the hall, but my living room was all of Paris.

(snip)

La Butte aux Cailles. How had I missed this neighborhood all these years? With its narrow lanes, clever street art and relaxed cafe-bars, it felt like a village in the middle of Paris — like the Marais minus the boutiques or Montmartre pre-“Amélie.” I walked up and down the streets, then into the offices of Les Amis de la Commune de Paris, a group dedicated to preserving the memory of the few months in 1871 when a workers’ movement took control of the capital.

(snip)

When I emerged from the Métro at Les Abbesses, I popped into Au Levain d’Antan, a boulangerie that got the top place in this year’s best baguette competition, and bought a demi-baguette, still warm from the oven. Then I raced down the street and up seven flights of stairs to my garret, where I sliced open the bread, slathered it with good Échiré butter, cracked open a bottle of ice-cold Sancerre and consumed my snack while watching the setting sun cast shadows across the City of Light. Forget the past, the present, the future, my expectations and my memories — this was living, no matter where or when I was.



NY Times article

More info on au levain d'antan

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#5 FoodDabbler

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Posted 10 October 2011 - 04:11 AM

Are all the snips in the piece above vasectomies? I'm sure Dumbo wants to know.

#6 Nancy S.

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Posted 11 October 2011 - 11:41 PM

At great risk (on several levels), but because I feel a bit sad that this query remains unanswered, I'll suggest two places about which I am "curious": Neva Cuisine and the soon-to-be-opened Verjus.

#7 Sneakeater

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 05:21 AM

I'm not in Paris, but after Hedone, I would just do whatever Nancy told me.
Bar Loser

MF Old

#8 Chambolle

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 07:55 AM

Thanks for coming out to play, Nancy.

I've neva heard of Neva but I'll go check it out.

Juan has been excited about Verjus for a bit now. Maybe I should pop in on him and see what the latest is re it's opening date.

And what's all this about risky business? Chambo is harmless.

He's all about food and drink and fun while his parents are away. Unfortunately, sometimes things seem to go out of control.

I'm all ears though ...

#9 balex

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 09:32 AM

BBR in London has been hyping Olivier Bernstein for a while -- my burg nut friends are unimpressed so far.

#10 Chambolle

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 10:39 AM

I was introduced to M. Bernstein by a mutual friend in Paris. This Paris friend grew up with Olivier in their tiny village in the middle of nulle part near Touraine. I tasted chez Bernstein a Gevrey. We hit it off big time. He comes from a fascinating family - think classical music - not Leonard and conducting, but Germany and publishing. Olivier is a pretty darn interesting and grounded and courageous character. He follows his heart. He's Chambo's type of guy. Bravo Bernstein !

When Olivier came to Paris shortly after my Burgundian visit, he called me up and we had a nice powwow for a few hours dans le jardin du Lux and then dinner together later that week. We're getting together in the near future. We're BFF now.

I only tasted his 2010s en fut. His stuff is completely sold out in advance. Payment up front prior to delivery. And he only started doing his Burgundian thang in 2007. I asked him how the heck did you accomplish that? That kicked off some extensive, in depth conversations re the burg bizness and some ideas that I have had germinating for a number of years now. These discussions were fascinating for me. And, I believe, for him. Can't say more.


Off-topic for Balex. Since you mentioned having indulged in a Clos de Vougeot recently, I'll share this random story with you. That mutual Paris friend that I mentioned above visited me on Nantucket this summer. We had the following conversation there over a nice bottle of red:

Him: Hey Chambo, you like Burgundy wines right?
Me: Duh.
Him: Did you know that my father is a member of la Confrérie des Chevaliers du Tastevin ?
Me: Continue ...
Him: I was just wondering if you might be interested in becoming a member at my father's invitation ?
Me: Continue ...
Him: I mean you like to hang with interesting people and you like to drink wine and you like to partake in feasts, right?
Me: All true, continue ...
Him: And you like to clown around and get dressed up in silly robes, right?
Me: All true, continue ...
Him: So, consider it, why don't ya?
Me: What do they actually do ? What's involved ? Where and when do they get together ?
Him: They usually get together au Château du Clos de Vougeot, I believe. But chat with my dad. It's good fun, Chambo.
Me: Hmmmm, sounds interesting. I do prefer to hang out in Chambolle, but I could consider expanding my horizons just a bit.

I'm thinking about it ...

Gotta run. Lunch time is quickly approaching.

#11 Nancy S.

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 01:50 PM

Thanks for coming out to play, Nancy.

I've neva heard of Neva but I'll go check it out.

Juan has been excited about Verjus for a bit now. Maybe I should pop in on him and see what the latest is re it's opening date.

And what's all this about risky business? Chambo is harmless.

He's all about food and drink and fun while his parents are away. Unfortunately, sometimes things seem to go out of control.

I'm all ears though ...

I'll be curious to know what you think about Neva. I've read some positive reports, but I haven't been. I sense that my assessment of restaurants (both in terms of food and atmosphere) follows a pattern quite similar to yours, so I look forward to your reports.

#12 voyager

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 02:21 PM

A couple of people I trust give Neva only average grades. Not bad. In fact, good for the money, if that is how you dine. But nothing exciting. We've not been and I doubt will get there because of so many other attractions.

#13 Nancy S.

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 02:31 PM

A couple of people I trust give Neva only average grades. Not bad. In fact, good for the money, if that is how you dine. But nothing exciting. We've not been and I doubt will get there because of so many other attractions.

For me, that would be enough to steer me to another venue. I'm looking for better than good enough. Many thanks for the advice.

#14 voyager

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 04:23 PM

One place I plan to hit next month is L'Auberge du 15. (Your rules say that we must vet a room before posting, so I apologize in advance.) I see that they are featuring game at the moment, so this might be an interesting time for you to check it out. 5 plates for 68€ or a la carte.

#15 Chambolle

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 09:33 AM

Your rules say that we must vet a room before posting, so I apologize in advance

Who's rules? Not Chambo's.

The only two gentle qualifiers that I thought that I specified (and they were noted as "you might ..."s) were:

a) make a decent case for the place. That pretty much means that you need to spell the name of the resto correctly.

b) supply a link or two. Hopefully giving some indication of why the place might have some potential merit.

From there, Chambo can grab the saliva-soaked steering wheel and speed off into the sunset.

Therefore, you seem to have passed the test admirably. Mercy buckets. Hence, apology not necessary. Hence, apology declined for the time being. I'll take a rain check on it.

Anyhoo, rules schmules.

Chambo doesn't follow any known rules on planet Earth. Why should you?

Stay Hungry ! Stay Foolish !