Archives for category: Restaurants

I’m sharing this post for the next time I head to London!


From the wonderful Hip Paris blog…

The Other Side of Montmartre: Coffee, Food and Shopping Off the Beaten Path

HiP Paris Blog, Café Lomi, Montmartre Round Up

Café Lomi

Paris’ 18th arrondissement, to the north of the city, is a vast and varied area, encompassing some of the most affluent enclaves (right up at the top of the hill) and some of the shadiest (La Goutte d’Or), as well as one of the city’s most frequented tourist spots — Le Sacre Coeur and the surrounding streets and squares in Montmartre.

HiP Paris Blog,, La Rallonge, Montmartre Round Up

La Rallonge

But slightly off the beaten track is the more unassuming part of this neighborhood: the residential area in the foothills of Montmartre, extending from the arrondissement’s town hall – where I happen to have lived for the best part of a decade – which is well worth the detour to discover the lesser known shops, restaurants and more that the guide-book clutching hoards are yet to discover.

HiP Paris Blog, Manufacture Parisienne, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round Up 8

HiP Paris Blog, Manufacture Parisienne, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round UpManufacture Parisienne (Kim Laidlaw)

Here is a selection of my favorite new and newish places that look set to make this part of the 18th a destination on any discerning visitor or local’s itinerary. Food in the area ranges from a quick bite and coffee right up to fine French dining.

HiP Paris Blog, Café Lomi, photo by Keith Isaacs of Forms+Colors, Montmartre Round Up

Café Lomi (Keith Isaacs)

The recent arrival of Café Lomi (3 ter Rue Marcadet, 75018 Paris), a serious coffee joint that roasts its own beans and hosts tasting sessions, brought much joy to local laptop-wielding freelancers who now regularly set up shop at one of the wooden tables in the cosy yet spacious café to enjoy superlative coffee, delicious scones and a selection of light lunch and brunch options (such as quiche and salad) whilst taking advantage of the free Wi-Fi access and laidback welcome.

HiP Paris Blog, Café Lomi, Montmartre Round Up

HiP Paris Blog, Bululu, Montmartre Round Up

Café Lomi (above)/ Bululu

Another relaxed – and cheap – place to grab a bite in the area is Bululu (20 Rue de la Fontaine du But, 75018), serving freshly made arepas, a Venezuelan sandwich made from gluten-free flatbread and filled with yummy delights such as avocado, beans and cheese, served with ice cold beer and banana chips.

HiP Paris Blog, Table d Eugene, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round Up

HiP Paris Blog, Table d Eugene, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round Up 2

Table d Eugene (Kim Laidlaw)

On the other end of the scale is Table d’Eugène (18 Rue Eugène Sue, 75018), the freshly revamped gastronomic restaurant where you can eat a three-course fixed-price menu of French haute cuisine for the incredibly reasonable price of just €52.

HiP Paris Blog, Manufacture Parisienne, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round Up

Manufacture Parisienne (Kim Laidlaw)

Chef Geoffroy Maillard, formerly of Le Bristol, creates inspired seasonal dishes such as lobster with vanilla, chestnuts and mushrooms, matched with carefully sourced, independently-produced wines, all savored in this intimate restaurant tastefully decorated in soothing tones of chocolate and white.

HiP Paris Blog, La Rallonge, Montmartre Round Up

La Rallonge

From the same team comes the recently opened wine and tapas bar La Rallonge (16 Rue Eugène Sue, 75018), just a few doors up from Table d’Eugène, serving the same excellent wines as well as a selection of small plates to share, all anchored around the high quality of individual ingredients, including Serrano ham croquettes with onions and béchamel, or truffle risotto, as well as cheese and charcuterie platters showcasing delicacies such as bellota, coppa and manchego.

HiP Paris Blog, La Rallonge, Montmartre Round Up 2

HiP Paris Blog, La Rallonge, Montmartre Round Up

La Rallonge

This part of town is also a real gold mine for independent boutiques, including the charming Manufacture Parisienne (93 rue Marcadet, 75018) that seems to have jumped out of the pages of a fairy tale.

HiP Paris Blog, Manufacture Parisienne, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round Up

Manufacture Parisienne (Kim Laidlaw)

The almost entirely white space sells an array of artisan-made wares and gifts for children, adults and the home, sourced from family-run businesses and companies clinging to their savoir-faire, and often produced in limited editions especially for the shop. Every six weeks there is a new theme (Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Halloween…) and the stock and the décor change, and a new little box of goodies (including, for example, stationary, a book, sweets) in keeping with the theme goes on sale.

HiP Paris Blog, Manufacture Parisienne, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round Up

HiP Paris Blog, Manufacture Parisienne, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round Up

Manufacture Parisienne (Kim Laidlaw)

Another new boutique is Maison Nordik (159 Rue Marcadet, 75018), set up by a young French-Danish couple, selling vintage mid-century modern Scandinavian furniture in excellent condition sourced directly from Denmark in a spacious 100m2 two-level shop. Just up the hill, eccentric French brand Atypyk (17 rue Lambert, 75018) sells quirky and humorous knick knacks ranging from a cheese-shaped dish sponge to an “R.Mutt” sticker to turn your loo into a Duchamp-inspired work of art.

HiP Paris Blog, Maison Nordik, Manufacture Parisienne, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round Up

HiP Paris Blog, Maison Nordik, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round Up 4

Maison Nordik & Manufacture Parisienne (above) / Maison Nordik (Kim Laidlaw)

Les Mauvaises Graines (25 Rue Custine, 75018) is an incredibly stylish plant shop – or indeed “urban gardening concept store”, as it calls itself – selling framed butterflies, vases and candles alongside ready made potted gardens to take away, and beautiful plants grown in the Paris region without the use of pesticides or chemical fertilizers.

HiP Paris Blog, Les Mauvaises Graines, Montmartre Round Up

HiP Paris Blog, Les Mauvaises Graines, Montmartre Round Up

Les Mauvaises Graines


Another recent addition to this side of Montmartre is the completely renovated 1920s building that is the Louxor cinema (170 Boulevard de Magenta, 75010), complete with its impressive mosaicked neo-Egyptian architecture, which reopened in April 2013 after 20 years of closure. The vast movie theatre houses three screens, one of which has a ceiling painted with a night-sky mural in the style of an Egyptian tomb, and specializes in art house films.

HiP Paris Blog, La Rallonge, Montmartre Round Up

La Rallonge

These new and/or revamped delights, together with an authentic, neighborhood charm and so many other wonderful fixtures that I don’t have the space to mention, make this part of the 18th arrondissement a worthwhile, up-and-coming (and yet to be overrun) destination in Paris for shoppers, foodies, coffee addicts and culture lovers alike. I look forward to bumping in to you there, sometime.

HiP Paris Blog, Maison Nordik, Kim Laidlaw, Montmartre Round Up

Maison Nordik (Kim Laidlaw)

Related links:

  • Ylenia takes us on a stroll around Montmartre, which just happens to be one of her favorite neighborhoods
  • Want to see more of the cozy Café Lomi? Paris Select has also payed a visit to the coffee gem
  • Don’t miss Thomas article for the HiP Paris blog about Centre Commercial, another great shopping spot in Paris

I’m not going till next March, but its never too early to start thinking about where to dine in NYC.  We only have 4 nights, and those 4 choices are crucial ones.  Shigure is definitely on the short list…



My kind of place is comfortable, food-centric, and of course, anything Japanese naturally moves to the top of my list.  Yes, there are umpteen options, from yakitori joints to the uber-hip izakaya places.  I’ve been to several on previous trips and compared to Japan, I found them overrated and noisy.  I’m looking for something a bit less Disney-esque.

Shigure meets those requirements perfectly.  Its homey and low key, with exposed brick walls yet noteworthy music (if the NY Times mentions it, its got to be good).  The focus is clearly on Japanese oriented beverages and small plates meant to induce lively conversation and a memorable evening.  Check out the recent NY Times article here.

And for those of you who are slaves to the Tripadvisor restaurant reviews, I would suggest you take them with a grain of salt.  I find that a bit of detective work done on your own is a better measure of a great meal.

techno dining


Imagine eating a 22 course meal while simultaneously being indulged in every sense, from everchanging murals to scents piped in for over-the-top aromas?  Sound crazy?  It’s already happening in Shanghai and other locales across the globe with “Multisensory Dining”, a concept that incorporates heightened emotion as a key component in this new gastronomic movement…coming to a McDonald’s near you?  Read about it here.

 Eating, Drinking & Shopping in Paris’ HiP South-of-Pigalle Area


HiP Paris SOPI Sebastien Gaudard4 Didier Gauducheau

For decades, Pigalle was known mainly for its sex shops, seedy shows and working girls. During WWII, this sketchy section of Paris earned the nickname “Pig Alley” thanks to its bawdy rep. But these days, Pigalle has earned a few new monikers as well as a cleaner reputation. Now, in NYC fashion, trendy locals refer to it as either NoPi (North of Pigalle) or SoPi (South of Pigalle).


While both North and South have plenty to offer, it’s SoPi that’s become the latest neighborhood to watch.  Moving beyond nighttime entertainment, SoPi is packed with plenty of destination restaurants, food shops, cafes and enough to make an itinerary that runs from morning until nighttime.

HiP Paris SOPI Rocketship3 Didier Gauducheau

To get a day’s worth of enjoyment out of one the city’s hippest ‘hood, kick start things with some caffeine at Rocketship. Like many places in Paris, they don’t open until later in the morning, so make your way there leisurely. In keeping with the neighborhood’s NY-inspired nickname, this concept coffeeshop works a Brooklyn vibe and offers chai lattes alongside coffee from Coutume.

HiP Paris SOPI Rocketship1 Didier Gauducheau

After coffee, take time to browse the boutique. Benoit, the owner, prides himself on finding unique treasures and includes a good number of pieces from SoPi-based artisans.

Le Rocketship, 13 bis rue Henri Monnier, Paris, 75009, +33 1 48 78 23 66


Afterwards make a detour just a few doors down to check out Natier. The lovely lady behind this chocolate shop, Madame Letterrier, stocks up on everything you need from small treats to pretty Parisian gifts to take home.  Here you’ll find classic truffles from artisan chocolatiers, jewel toned pate de fruit and a sweet selection of teas from Palais de Thes.

Natier, 1 rue Henri Monnier, Paris, 75009, +33 1 42 81 35 75

HiP Paris SOPI Depanneur2 Didier Gauducheau

If you’ve spent the appropriate amount of shopping time, you should now be ready for lunch at le Depanneur. Paris nightlife entrepreneur Oliver Demarle has pulled in the Cantine California crew of Paris food truck fame to give what was a dying dive bar an overhaul with a sunnier outlook and totally revamped menu.

HIP Paris SOPI Depanneur1 Didier Gauducheau

Join local trendwatchers on the sidewalk terrace for big, sloppy burgers topped with Frenchified condiments like bleu cheese or Beaufort.

Le Depanneur, 27 rue Pierre Fontaine, Paris, 75009, +33 1 48 74 48 74

HiP Paris SOPI Sebastien Gaudard5 Didier GauducheauHIP Paris SOPI Sebastien Gaudard2 Didier Gauducheau

But don’t forget to save room for a little dessert at your next stop! Walk off your late lunch on the way to award-winning pasty chef Sebastien Gaudard’s SoPi location.  Don’t be fooled by the retro and minimalist décor – here, it’s the flavors that really pop.

HIP Paris SOPI Sebastien Gaudard1 Didier GauducheauHiP Paris SOPI Sebastien Gaudard3 Didier Gauducheau

Grab a handful of macarons or a sorbet to go and walk north back up rue des Martyrs, lingering for window shopping (or more) at its many bakeries, cafes, and wine, sweet, oil and food shops.

Patisserie des Martyrs by Sebastien Gaudard22 rue des Martyrs, Paris, 75009, +33 1 71 18 24 70

HIP Paris SOPI Dirty Dick Facebook, Dirty Dick 1HIP Paris SOPI Dirty Dick Facebook, Dirty Dick 2Dirty Dick

Hopefully you’re ready for cocktail hour now because you’re close to the city’s latest and greatest tiki joint, Dirty Dick.  This bar embodies the spirit of the new Pigalle.  In a naughty wink to the past, they’ve kept the name of the former girlie club in which they reside, but completely upgraded the offerings into something new, relevant and lighthearted.

HiP Paris SOPI Dirty Dick Facebook, Dirty Dick 5HiP Paris SOPI Dirty Dick Facebook, Dirty Dick 3Dirty Dick

A bamboo bar, umbrella topped drinks, and tiki totems give the place a fun and frivolous feel. At the same time, the relaxed staff knows their stuff and delivers delicious drinks with a smile.  It’s the perfect Pigalle spot to sink into for a pre-dinner drink or two.

Dirty Dick, 10 rue Frochot, Paris, 75009

If you’re ready to experience more of the neighborhood for dinner, there are plenty of options such as PantruchePremicesMaison Mere and more.  But, possibly the best option now is to wander the winding streets and discover something on your own.  While a set itinerary is great, there’s nothing more rewarding than finding your own hidden gem. And, fortunately, SoPi is now full of them.

Written by Forest Collins for the HiP Paris Blog. All images by Didier Gauducheau, except where otherwise noted. Looking for a fabulous vacation rental in Paris, London, Provence, or Tuscany? Check out Haven in Paris.


Living vicariously through other bloggers…will be in NYC next May, and this restaurant looks like a great option!

Summer Of George

There’s nothing I love more than catching up with a girlfriend that I haven’t seen in a while over a tasty meal and some cocktails. So I was psyched when, last week, Vivy agreed to try out a brand spankin’ new Laotian-inspired Southeast Asian restaurant in Tribeca.

If you love the flavors of Southeast Asia and are looking for an intimate and warm dining experience then look no further than Khe-Yo (Duane St, between Hudson St. and W. Broadway).

They had me at the bar.




After salivating over every item on the menu, Viv and I ordered a bunch of small plates to share and got down to the serious business of girl talk.


Some highlights:

(In reference to Viv having recently given a former beau a second chance.)

Viv:   “So yeah, we had a long talk where he basically said that he wanted to show…

View original post 419 more words

The Grove Park Inn has ALWAYS been great, but its getting even better.  We were just there this past week and I wanted to tell you about some new things going on.  First of all, they’ve built gorgeous decks outside where you can enjoy cocktails, nibbles and the stunning mountain views…







I was also told that they are opening a BRAND NEW restaurant this week (soft opening) called EDISON that is going to feature craft beers and cocktails as well as a new spin on southern comfort food.

In case you didn’t know, the Grove Park is having its centennial celebration this year with new signature cocktails, commemorative glasses and ongoing events.  Furthermore, should you decide to spend a weekend here, make sure to book well in advance for a day at their award-winning (seriously) over the top spa.



Yes, the prices seem extortionist, but trust me when I tell you that it is worth paying $80 for a pedicure when you can spend the whole day pampering yourself on the premises, and you must indulge!  There are indoor pools, waterfalls, outdoor pools with striking views of distant mountains…you will not regret it.

As for the food, we had lunch on the terrace after waiting for a while in the massive lobby sipping on a craft cocktail and house made pimento cheese and chips…a shout out to Nelson for some snappy waitering!







Then for lunch, we had a variety of items from the gargantuan burger, to the beet salad and trout entree, all of which were lovely and delicious…



The house made fries are cooked in duck fat, just sayin…



And let me tell you, you will have died and gone to heaven after eating their insanely good biscuits with honey/butter/pepper spread (notice I couldn’t get a picture before it was half gone)!





I promise they don’t pay me to say any of this (although they should!).  The place is just awesome in my opinion.  I have stayed there, but its been a while.  I’ve heard they’ve updated all the rooms recently, and I can vouch that the lobby has been redone with a contemporary adirondack vibe (if there’s such a thing, imagine John Saladino crossed with Frank Lloyd Wright).

Book now and thank me later. Maybe I’ll send you ideas on where to eat in Asheville, which was recently voted one of the best foodie towns (by Food and Wine I believe).



Disregard the fire trucks…the renovation kicked up dust and set off a false alarm that day!

@groveparkinn @GPI @Edison