Monday, August 12, 2013

Bistro in Paris: Chez Janou

Date: 8 June 2013
Location: Marais, Paris
Remarks: Bistro in Paris: Chez Janou

I came to Chez Janou unintentionally during my walk in the arty Marais district in Paris for a place for dinner and Chez Janou had become one of my nice touches in Paris. I intended to avoid those bistrots/ restaurants in the main road in Marais during my search for dinner (There is always a preconception of mine that those restaurants in the main road are either very touristy or over-priced) and had just randomly walked in Chez Janou in one of the quieter corners at around 8pm. I guess I was lured when I saw a busy bistrot in a quiet street.

The place is packed with people waiting for the tables. As quoted from the waiter: "Do you have a reservation? No? Well, you have to wait for at least 45 minutes." "45 minutes?!" "Yes. Look around, everybody is waiting." The place was so packed that you gotta push you way in to the bar for the drinks while waiting for a table.

I was lucky enough that I did not really need to wait since I was alone there and could sit in the bar. I had my dinner for around an hour or so, and I did observed that people did wait for 45 minutes to one hour for the table!!

Chez Janou serves Provençal cruisine. The food are nicely cooked with passion and reasonably priced (it took around 18-30 euro for a main course for dinner), and the services are friendly and warm. The place is very bustling and lively and is a great place for casual dining and in meeting up with friends.

However, seriously, don't even bother to get in if you don' t have a reservation!! I did asked the bartender. The place is the same packed, lunch and dinner, everyday during the week. Though you can grab a drink in the bar while waiting, but 45 minutes to an hour, at least for me, is way too much. So, advanced reservation is ESSENTIAL!!

PS. I only came to beware that Chez Janou was indeed one of the recommended ones in Lonely Planet after I were there!! I guess I did have some luck that night.

Chez Janou
Address: 2, rue Roger Verlomme, 75003 Paris
Telephone number: 01 42 72 28 41
Remarks: near Metro station Chemin Vert

Monday, July 29, 2013

Crepes in Paris: Crêperie Suzette

Date: 10 June 2013
Location: Malais, Paris
Remarks: Crêperie Suzette in Malais

Being in Paris for the first time, there are lots of must-do and must-try.  Crepes is one of the must-try. A local friend of mine in Paris highly recommends Crêperie Suzette in Malais. According to what she's said, Crêperie Suzette has the best crepes in Paris and its homemade tomato sauce and chocolate paste is phenomenal.

It is expensive as compared to the other creperie in Paris, but it is real good. I tried a salty one, with cheese, ham, tomato and egg. It costed around 8-9 euro, which you may find similar ones in other crepie at around 5-7 euro. But the one I had in Crêperie Suzette tasted amazingly good. It was a real balanced one, garnished with some salad greens. It is savory-filled with crispy edges and warm and slightly moist fillings. The place was phenomenal and it was one of my favourite in Paris.

P.S. I was there in late afternoon so I don't really need to wait/ queue. I am not very sure if you need queue for a long time if you are going there during lunch/ dinner time.

Crêperie Suzette
Address: 24 rue des Franc-Bourgeois, 75004 Paris
Telephone number: 01 42 72 46 16
Remarks: You can get there from metro station Saint-Paul or Chemin Vert

Monday, July 22, 2013

Monmartre, Paris

Date: 7 June 2013
Location: Paris, France
Remarks: Monmartre in the morning

Basilique du Sacré Cœur. I love the place.

Monmartre is one of my favourite places in Paris. It was highly touristy, but I like it. It was fun and very energetic. I was following the walking route of lonely planet which took around 2-3 hours. It started from metro station Blanche, walked pass the very famous Moulin Rouge, went up the hill, walked passed the signature blue door of Van Gogh's House (which was indeed nothing special, since you could not get in), to Place du Tertre and Basilique du Sacré Cœur.

I like the neighbourhood on the way up to Basilique du Sacré Cœur. It was quite with the white little houses on the way, which contrast to the busy Place du Tertre, which is just a few street away from Sacré Cœur. Many street artists setting up their easels in Place du Tertre, making portraits for tourists. The square is crowded with the artists and tourists, with cafe and restaurants surrounding it and shops selling typical souvenirs in the streets nearby. The place ishighly touristy busy and hazzled, but fun. It was very interesting to watch the artists, some are talented while some are not, painting portraits for tourists.

Basilique du Sacré Cœur is another landmark with around 5 minutes walk fro Place du Tertre.Sacré Cœur is a Roman Catholic church, and you could have a very beautiful panoramic view of Paris in the square in front of Sacré Cœur. Sacré Cœur, all in white, is a very beautiful piece of architecture and you can enter the sanctuary of the church which is free to guests. One could also paid to step up the 234 spiralling steps to the basilique’s dome for an even more spectacular panoramas of Paris.

A walk in Monmartre is a must-do in Paris and would definitely worth your time.