Posts tagged “paris

Adieu Paris!!!

 

It’s now time to leave Paris…. it’s been a great couple of days and the weather has been magnifique!  I’m sitting at the airport writing this last entry for our trip because we got back from dinner too late last night.

Our last day…. what can I say.   I stayed up late the other night with the blog and Faceboook and got many nice responses on the pictures from Tielt and Lokeren – in fact, I got responses as I was posting them.  We really had a great time and enjoyed the entire time.  As a result, we got up late this morning and didn’t hit the streets until 10:30.   Anyway, it was a beautiful morning and I captured some great pictures as we went from the Champs-Élysées, to the Left Bank, and back to the 9th arrondissement.  Here are a few:

 

Place de la Concorde

 

Place de la Concorde

 

Place de la Concorde

 

 

On the Champs Elysee – doesn’t it look like i’m on a bike behind this guy?

 

Look out for that car!

 

Arc de Triomphe

 

The famous Les Deux Magots – we had drinks here.

 

St. Germain des Pres

 

Inside St. Germain

 

Inside St. Germain

 

This is St. Germain

 

The organ

 

We rested a bit and then got ready for dinner.  We couldn’t do the special birthday dinner for Rich on Monday because most of the high end restaurants are closed on Monday. We had an outstanding dinner at Le Cinq which is in the Four Seasons George V Hotel – it was magnificent!  The entire hotel is beautiful but the restaurant itself is a work of art – the service was superb and the food divine.  We had the prix fixe and were there from 8pm until almost midnight!  Wow – I think that’s a record for us.  Here are a few pictures from the evening.

 

Place setting at the table – the flower petals were for Rich’s birthday

 

A glass of champagne – bien sur!

 

Rich waiting for the first course

 

Amuse bouche – octopus on the left (it was great)

 

First course – tuna tartare with caviar

 

Second course – tomato millefeuille with crab

 

Second course – a melon refreshment to go with the tomato millefeuille

 

A great Burgundy – Chambolle-Musigny – Les Baudes

 

Third course – razor clams

 

Fourth course – mushroom risotto with mushroom foam

 

Main course – blue lobster with a veal reduction sauce

 

Pre dessert – sorbet

 

Dessert – peach ice

 

Main dessert – chocolate pie with lemon sorbet

 

End of the meal – they actually gave us a picture to take with us

 

We had a wonderful vacation and it’s now time to get back to reality.  This trip was very special in so many ways.  We visited so many great places – Paris, London, St. Emilion, Mont St. Michel, Honfleur, the Normandy sites, Maastricht, Antwerp.  We also had a memorable time with my family in Belgium.  Monique and Eddy were outstanding hosts the entire time and attending the christening of Julie was also a highlight.

Monique, Eddy, Bart, Mariam, Sophie, Tom – heel erg bedankt voor een goede, goede tijd!

So now it’s the end of the story.  There are many memories and some beautiful pictures.  I hope that everyone who has followed the blog enjoyed the commentary and photos.  I’ll end with a couple of night time shots of the Eiffel Tower – what a magnificent city Paris is.  Adieu!

 

Eiffel Tower from our hotel window

 

Eiffel Tower from the room

 

 

 

 

 


Return to Paris – Happy Birthday, Rich

 

Happy Birthday, Rich!!

 

Having a glass of champagne at the Grand Hotel

 

Today we left Tielt in the morning and got back to Paris around noon.  Marie led us directly to the hotel without a hitch but the traffic was tough.  Driving in central Paris is a nightmare with all of the pedestrians, motorcycles, crazy cars, taxis….. yikes!!  We did, however, make it back without a problem.  Of course, we had to ditch Marie…. c’est dommage….. she’ll soon be helping others find there way…. tournez a gauche!

We spent the afternoon checking out different – and then some of the same – areas of Paris.  Here are just a few shots I took today:

 

Palais de Justice

 

Notre Dame and the Seine

 

Notice the crowds at Notre Dame

 

We had a great dinner tonight at a Venetian restaurant – excellent food and a very nice location.

 

Attached below are a few of the pictures I took while in Tielt, Belgium with my family.  We had a great time, ate a lot, drank a lot, and laughed a lot.  It was truly a great time.  I’ll close with the pictures and hope to have the final entry of our trip tomorrow night.  Adieu.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


À bientôt à Paris

 

 

We left London at 8:50 on the Eurostar from St. Pancras Train Station.  Here are a couple of pics from the station – notice the Olympic rings:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We arrived in Paris and went back to our original hotel and enjoyed the bottle of champagne we’d gotten when we first arrived….. had to get ready for Joel Robuchon!

 

 

Our reservations at L’Atelier Joel Robuchon were for 6:30pm – a little early for us but that’s all that they offer on a reservation basis.  It was on the other side of the Seine and traffic was horrific.  I wanted to be there just a little bit late but not lose our reservation!  Not to worry, everything worked out fine.  This was to be my first birthday dinner…. there are many to follow, trust me!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Everything was outstanding.  We ordered several small courses somewhat like tapas style.  We were able to take some hints from those around us and everyone was fairly fluent in English…. although honestly sometimes it’s really hard to understand them because of the accent.  Anyway, we sat next to a family of four from New York – lived in Connecticut.  They had two small girls and a dog…. can you believe it?  Taking small children (they were probably 4-6 years old) and a dog into a restaurant like this???  We loved it.  They were a great couple – she spoke French fluently since she was born in Paris and he was of Belgian descendant… can’t get any better than that!  Anette, I took their picture just to show you that even Raya could have a good time at Robuchon.

 

We had a variety of different plates – all were exquisite…. here they are:

Tomato gazpacho – velvety

Eggplant with mozzarella

Iberian ham to go with the bruschetta – absolutely delicious!

Crevettes (Shrimp) wrapped in very thin vermicelli and fried – yum!

Langoustine in a puff pastry

Crab royal served cold with a salad casing.

John Dory – known as St. Pierre in France

Angus Beef

Joel Robuchon’s famous mashed potatoes – is there enough butter in here for you?

Quel dommage – no more mashed potatoes.

 

The mashed potatoes are honestly magical… you’ve never had anything quite as delicate from a potato.  Evidently everyone asks for them when they come here and I’m so glad that I knew to order them.

 

Last but not least – the desserts…..

 

It was called Frais – strawberries on top of a very light custard.

Chocolate – very intense and velvety.

It probably seems like a lot of food but it actually was just right.  I first had my doubts about a counter offered French gourmet meal but it was an outstanding experience and actually a lot of fun.  Not stuffy… not pretentious… excellent food…. and a good time.  I won’t mention how many euros we offered to alleviate the European financial crisis – Angela Merkel would be proud!

I’m a little sorry to leave Paris in the morning but we’ll be back in another week or so.  What a great city and one that always continues to shine from my perspective.  We leave tomorrow early to board the train to Bordeaux.  I can’t wait to see what lies ahead.

If you read my blog, please take a moment to share a comment…. if nothing else than to say that you were here.  Hope you enjoy!

 

 


Jules Verne et La Tour Eiffel

Place de la Concorde

First full day in Paris and what a day!  It started by raining just a little – just enough to get the streets wet and to muggy up the weather…. boy was it hot and muggy!  The temperature was 85 degrees, it felt like 90 and the humidity was oppressive.  But hey…. it’s Paris so it can’t be too bad, right?

We had 12:30 reservations at Jules Verne on the 2nd floor of the Eiffel Tower.  We wore jackets so that we looked the part and took Metro to the nearest station – still a hefty 30 minute walk in the noon day sun.  But what a treat!  The experience was truly amazing and lived up to every expectation I had imagined.  I’ve included a small gallery of everything we ate:

First a glass of champagne – bien sur!

A little Amuse Bouche 0f orange, salmon and a little asparagus

A starter of veal layers in an aspic sauce

John Dory over a bed of shaved fennel and tomatoes

A raspberry/chocolate square

A side order of macaroons a la Jules Verne

Amuse Bouche

Veal Layers in Aspic

John Dory

Raspberry/Chocolate Square

Macaroons

 

 

Here’s a picture of the place setting and the marvelous butter they serve with the logo on top:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A special note to Adrienne:  Yes, we have eaten a lot but remember this blog is about food and other things as well – you’re going to see a lot of food.

 

Special note to Anette:  here is the watercolor we found for you along the Seine…. oops, what no Eiffel Tower… c’est dommage!

 

Selected exclusively for Anette

 

And now just a few pics to capture the rest of the day.  Gotta get some sleep because we’re catching an early train to London.  A bientot!

Hey Rich! Do you know where the Eiffel Tower is???

 

Same shot with Marc

Notre Dame

Nightime look towards the Place de la Concorde

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Nous Sommes Arrivés à Paris

We arrived without a hitch and had a wonderful flight on the Air France Airbus A380 – what a machine!  We boarded the plane via several ramps that led us directly into Business Class which was the overhead portion of the plane.  It took off like a rocket ship without a sound – it was truly amazing.  And the seats were incredible!  We were able to recline totally flat so that we were able to sleep fairly well.  Here’s a small preview of our dinner meal:

 

 

Lobster salad with a mango chutney in center.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chicken fricassee                                                                                        Beef Tornadoes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Notice the real silverware!!!

 

Here’s a picture of our little neighbor on board who was a champ throughout the flight and never sounded a peep:

 

We arrived on time and took a taxi to our hotel – it took a long time because of the traffic. The hotel, Hyatt Madeleine, is new and very comfortable – are we really in Paris???  Everyone is helpful and speaks English.  There was a problem tonight with the drapes that we never noticed and they left a very nice bottle of champagne for us – mon dieu!

We had to have a couple of beers at the Cafe de la Paix – it’s a tradition for us and a landmark in Paris.  It looks upon the old Opera Garnier so I couldn’t resist this wonderful view of the opera house with the cafe logo in the forefront:

 

 

After resting a bit, we had a very nice dinner at the Royal Madeleine bistro – very authentic French and not touristy at all.

 

Bienvenue en France and what a wonderful welcome it was….. this is just the first day so stay tuned!