May 20, 2017
1) On the terrace
2) Along rue Montorgueil
3) Aperitivo in Bologna
4) A generous apéritif dinatoire in Montmartre
5) At our neighborhood café - they could stand to be a bit more generous with the popcorn, non?
May 13, 2017
Oh, Bologna! What have you done to me?
You had me the minute I stepped up to the counter at that busy neighborhood café and ordered an espresso - it was deep, deep brown with notes of bitter chocolate and had the perfect amount of chestnut colored crema on top.
I ordered a prosciutto panino alongside and once I took a sip and then a bite, I was hooked.
Then I asked for the bill. The total came to €2.30.
I had to look again.
Only €2.30? For a perfect espresso and a prosciutto di Parma sandwich?
How soon can I move?
Then of course, there is the gelato.
Have you ever tasted salted pistachio gelato? Not just pistachio, but salted pistachio?
It will change your life (kind of like Normandy salt butter, of which I'm sure Italy has its own version). But so will the fresh strawberry gelato (in season). The pine nut and mascarpone. The hazelnut. The sour cherry. The dark chocolate. The Sicilian lemon.
Basically, you just want give up every other kind of food and only eat gelato. Forever.
Until you have the pasta.
And the pizza.
I haven't even mentioned the gorgeous seasonal fruit and vegetables yet. Have you ever seen such beautiful tomatoes? Or wild asparagus at such a reasonable price?
And those little peppers pack some serious heat!
Let's not forget the cheese. This is Parmigiano-Reggiano country, after all.
But Italy has much, much more to offer when it comes to formaggio. They claim to produce over 450 varieties - my kind of place!
This list of deliciousness wouldn't be complete without mentioning proscuitto di Parma, cured sausages and mortadella, which originated in Bologna.
I savored all of it, maybe a little too much! My jeans were uncomfortably tight by the end of the trip.
Now that I'm back in France and diving into the seasonal chèvre, the brie - which is so perfect right now - and enjoying a daily baguette, I know that I would long for these delicious French foods if I lived in Italy.
So I'll try to visit as often as possible, leaving plenty of room in my luggage.
This time I brought home 2.5 kilos of Parmigiano-Reggiano, a couple of bottles of Balsamico di Modena and a ridiculous amount of Calabrian chiles.
That should hold us...for a while.
May 7, 2017
1) Shopping in the Quadrilatero
2) A quiet street in Florence (not an easy thing to find!)
3) Tortellini - to be eaten "in brodo"
4) Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Luca, located in the hills above Bologna
5) Fresh rapini
April 26, 2017
We have friends visiting from the States, so this morning I had the chance to wander around the Île de la Cité while they were inside Notre Dame. I had read about the Place Dauphine for years but had never seen it, so I took the opportunity to sit in one of the cafés along the square, enjoy the quiet, watch a fashion shoot taking place and soak up some sun. I think I've found a new favorite Place in Paris!
If you're visiting Paris and would like to stay near Notre Dame, Paris Attitude has some beautiful apartments available to rent. And if you're looking for a nice spot to have a coffee or a drink, I enjoyed my morning at Le Bar du Caveau.
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April 20, 2017
Juveniles Wine Bar - for the food, the atmosphere, the lovely owners, and the wine!
Pictured is the duck breast with roasted Brussels sprouts and carrot purée that I had the last time I was there, in March.
La Promenade Plantée, also know as la Coulée Verte - for a lofty escape from the chaos of the city.
Fromagerie Laurent Dubois - for your cheese fix. This place will definitely take care of it!
Musée de l'Orangerie - for your soul. This is one of the most relaxing museums in Paris.
Popelini - for your sweet tooth. The flavors of these satisfying little cream puffs change with the seasons. If you prefer more tangy notes, go for the passion fruit or lemon.