This weekend myself and Andy took ourselves on a little jaunt to Paris for our anniversary. We arrived at about noon on Saturday, having spent several days panicking (well, I panicked) about the snow ruining our trip. Luckily Eurostar wasn’t too delayed and we arrived to Paris covered in a blanket of the chilly white stuff.
We set off to grab something to eat before checking into our hotel. One of the reasons I love Paris (well, France in general) is that they LOVE gherkins. I could eat gherkins out of the jar every day for the rest of my life. So when I saw this pastrami and gherkin badboy, I knew I needed it in my belly STAT.
Not the most fancy of meals, but delicious nonetheless.
We then headed off to check into our hotel – the Hotel Baltimore, located on Avenue Kleber, a hop and a skip from the Champs Elysees. I only have a photo of the outside, in the dark, in the snow. But the hotel really was fantastic – great location, attentive staff, huge walk in showers and huge squidgy beds. Heaven.
Having dumped our bags, we headed off for a bit of window shopping and hot chocolate seeking on the Champs Elysees.
I dragged Andy to one of my favourite shops of all time – Sephora. Long since disappeared from the UK, Sephora is the best place for make up, bathing, bodycare and perfume. There are still tons of Sephora stores in the US and France, you just have to save your pennies for when you get a chance to visit!
Sadly I only purchased a nail oil (crazy, I know) but I still managed to bore Andy silly in the process of oohing and aahing at all the pretty products!
We then set off down to Rue De Rivoli, where a branch of the famous Angelina Tea Salon/Patisserie is located. HUGE mistake! The queue was over 100 people long. So we instead found a random local place, which still served delicious hot chocolate. (And had the added bonus of blankets and masses of outdoor heaters, so you could watch the world go by, sipping your chocolat chaud, feeling toasty.)
We then headed back to our hotel and got ready for dinner. We’d been recommended Relais De Le’Entrecote, a chain of French restaurants who serve ONE thing: steak and chips. Relais De Le’Entrecote have a no reservations policy, so we turned up at about 9pm wrapped up warm, ready for an epic wait. In the end it wasn’t too bad, 45 minutes spent attempting to make conversation with a French couple who spoke no English.
This is where I morphed into a terrible blogger. I was hungry, I was cold, and I devoured that steak (which, by the way, you get TWO rounds of) and piles of chips without so much as a thought for taking a photo. But here’s my empty plate….
This was followed swiftly by some epic puddings – a peach Melba concoction for me, and ice cream filled profiteroles for Andy…
Stuffed full to the brim, we left two very happy chappies. And it wasn’t too hard on the wallet – 100 euros for the two of us, including a very nice bottle of red and a salad to start.
The best bit? They have opened in Londres! Check them out here.
Sunday morning started with us hunting out an Angelina without a 100 person queue. We headed straight to the Louvre, who have a very pretty downsized version tucked away on the first floor. It was empty when we arrived, and I had to resist the urge to fistpump in delight.
Angelina is famous for their hot chocolate – which can only be described as divine. It’s thick, rich and not too bitter. It’s served with dollops of whipped cream for you to add if you wish.
To eat they have an amazing array of cakes, and some proper food too. Andy went for a club sandwich and I went the whole hog and trumped for the brunch, which was epic. It started with some gorgeous tiny pastries.
Followed by foie gras terrine with toasted brioche, and a toasted bread roll with jam and honey.
Finally, when I thought I was about to burst, I was served a fruit salad and two perfect little macarons.
It really was a perfect way to start a lazy Sunday in Paris.
We then checked out some of the art (including the obligatory disappointing visit to the Mona Lisa) and headed outside to the tube to head over to the Puces flea market. First I had to get some snaps of snowy Paris…
I’d heard some good things about the Puces – it is the biggest outdoor market in Paris covering 7 hectares and is normally heaving (they expect 180,000 visitors/day at the weekends). Sadly it was dead and lots of the stalls weren’t open due to the snow, but we still had a good nosy around the amazing antique shops and I lusted after many a vintage Chanel bag. I’ll definitely be heading back there when it isn’t dumping with snow.
We then headed back into the centre of Paris for a gander at Notre Dame and a last snowy walk before heading back to collect our bags and dash off to the Eurostar.
All in all, a perfect weekend.