Et pfuitt! Sugared & Spiced is in Paris. So far, so good :)
So, what’s been going on in the past 5 days? Let’s start with the sweets, but of course. First stop: Pierre Hermé for its legendary Ispahan.
Then, Jacques Genin for chocolates and chocolate mille-feuille.
Next, Rose Bakery for some British tea and cakes.
Carl Marletti, where I sampled 5 desserts all at once (admittedly with the help of some friends).
Also had a few excellent meals, including an elbow-to-elbow lunch at the extremely popular Le Comptoir.
Cinq-Mars, a cozy little French bistro.
Galettes and crepes at Breizh Cafe.
Paid a visit to my school, ESCF-Ferrandi, where I will be spending my next 5 months learning everything from tarts to croissants to chocolates to ice-creams.
Visited a few kitchen equipment shops, including E. Dehillerin, the oldest of its kind, where Julia Child also frequented during her days in Paris.
Rode the infamous Paris metro. Yes it smells a little bit, but it’s nothing I can’t take after my years in Shanghai.
Even got a free ticket at the station when I didn’t have change to buy tickets! Now now, Parisians aren’t so bad, are they? (Knock on wood).
Accidentally walked into an open-air concert and decided to stay. Lovely.
Bought a baguette from the weekend open market.
Had more than a few glasses of rosé by the roadside.
And some beer while we were at it.
Observed the afternoon go by at Bastille.
Spent an evening at Wanderlust, a large terrace that serves as an exhibition and cultural space, an experimental restaurant, an outdoor and indoor night-club, open air cinéma, sports activities and kids workshops, designers markets…
Went to a few house gatherings, like this one at a tiny cozy 8th floor Parisian apartment. Climbing that spiraling staircase up was quite some work…
Shopped at Merci, a 16,000 sq. ft. mecca for design and fashion lovers.
Also had my fair share of touristy activities, like taking a walk by La Seine.
Visiting Notre Dame de Paris.
Le Louvre, though I didn’t have a chance to go in yet.
My most mesmerizing moment in Paris, however, happened inside Shakespeare & Company, a bookstore and a reading library specializing in English-language literature. Its first reincarnation, opened in 1919, was the gathering place for writers like Ezra Pound, Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce and Ford Madox Ford. To get a feel of the bookstore, click here. I visited on a drizzling day, and the surreal combination of old books, handwritten notes, crammed space, damp air, piano music, and an eclectic collection of book readers…was absolutely out of this world.
All these, in 5 days. Not a bad start, wouldn’t you agree? Paris, enchantée.