I’ve only been back in Seattle for two weeks, after spending 2014 in Europe, only to find myself touring the elite restaurants of San Francisco with 11 other Seattleites for my best friend, Andrea’s, surprise birthday. Her husband, Dante, planned out a foodie weekend for us all, strategically grabbing reservations months in advance for our large party then cancelling the previous one once he secured something better, not stopping until he had the best. He should write a book called “How to Throw an Out of Town Surprise Party for 12 Foodie Friends and Not Die of a Heart Attack”.
Paris, like most major metropolitan cities, can be tricky to navigate when it comes to dining out. There are copious bad meals to be had in restaurants seducing us foodies with the right font on chalkboards and beautiful reclaimed wood tables. The bright side is that there are many exceptional meals to be had if one is willing to sift through it all. I’ll help! After almost two months of scouring the cobbled stoned streets of Paris, through online research, local recommendations and going back to the places I enjoyed when I lived there, I’ve compiled my favorite spots in town with a couple recommended research resources.
When was the last time you said “I want to eat where the locals eat”? I’m venturing to say that the majority of travelers have said this one time or another, including myself. It’s logical…if we eat where those who reside in that town eat then we can assume we are getting a more authentic; less-touristy experience. Where this is partially true, I challenge you to ask yourself a couple things 1) are you prepared to accept that the locals might not eat as well as you imagined? 2) should you really be so disappointed in this globalized world when you hear your neighboring diners speaking English?
Last month I, unexpectedly, met my lasagna muse at a vegetarian restaurant in Amsterdam- Waaghals. It was a pumpkin lasagna with flavors that burst, textures that melted and colors that glistened. Maybe the stars were aligned or maybe my palate was finally ready for this comfort food to walk right into my life… All I know is when someone can turn a pumpkin spiced latte into your dinner you must follow your heart. Thus, I took on creating my own.
I’ve played around with various mixtures of ingredients to not only recreate but improve on the dish I ate at Waaghals; adding more Fall vegetables and ultimately texture. Here’s what I came up with: