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.
For an American hostess/host, these 4 words are enough to immediately incite a light sweat and raise one’s blood pressure. Yet, dedicated expats living in Paris tackle this holiday year in and year out. Maybe it is because we find it necessary to cling on to the one truly American feast we have; giving us an opportunity to tastefully exhibit American pride, or maybe it’s an excuse to pass up sole meunière for some good old comfort food. Whatever the reason, executing a flawless Thankgiving meal in France is a challenge and without proper planning and shopping one may be left biting off more than he/she can chew.
After sitting here for 20 minutes writing, deleting and rewriting the perfect way to accurately summarize Corsica, I now realize why people say that words cannot describe this magical paradise. It seems nearly impossible to evoke the emotion one feels while standing along the rocky cliffs of Bonifacio, peering over a remote sandy beach, the light breeze through your hair as the sun bronzes your shoulders. Each day on this island is filled with new hikes, new views, new shallow- turquoise beaches, comfortable beach bars and sunset cliff-side dinners serving Corsican delicacies. The beauty of the island alone is so satiating that I almost forget about my biological need to eat, as I’m so distracted with my surroundings.
Several years ago, I read a study conducted between children 7-12(ish) years old who were asked to draw a turkey. The majority drew what they see on the Thanksgiving table- a roasted bird ready to be carved up. Many were startled to learn that a turkey is a living animal. Starting from the time we are children, American food culture has discouraged our connection from understanding the sources of our meat and the process of getting it to our table. When Americans visit French farmers’ markets for the first time I will hear the echo of disgust amongst the crowd as they disapprovingly eye the intact carcasses to which the meat for sale belongs. It’s a legitimate reaction given that we are used to it magically appearing on our dinner plates.