I was so excited about my Euro4.90 Pate de Foie Gras sandwich from La Grande Epicerie that I forgot to include the other items we had for lunch! First let me say that when we travel (MM&Family) we try to mix up our food experiences, from eating at markets, shopping at delicatessens or food halls for take-out, and trying some fancy restaurants on occasion. It’s just more fun that way, and frankly, it is easier on the wallet as well. What we do generally try and avoid most of the time are the “tourist” restaurants, often known as the ones with “photos on their menus or posted outside the establishment”. I realize I am generalizing, but what I am saying is that don’t fall prey to those who are precisely targeting you, the tourist, with supposedly no other choice… In our experiences over many trips, we eat best when we eat at either end of the food spectrum… fantastic food at the market or street level in many places, and fantastic food at the nosebleed priced starred restaurants, if carefully researched. What almost always disappoints are the mid-priced restaurants, streetside cafes, etc. In Paris, it’s VERY EASY to take the easy route out and sit at a nice sidewalk cafe, order a mediocre to LOUSY onion soup and a main course and end up paying some Euro25-35 per person, when you could have had 7 foie gras sandwiches instead…heehee…I am exaggerating, of course.
My other sister from New York (yes, I have two) happened to be in London on business and she decided to join us in Paris for a couple of days. She also had her daughter, my niece, fly out to meet us in Paris the day after she finished her classes at college. It was my niece’s first time in Paris and this was her first day out with us, before her mom arrived. And we took her to La Grande Epicerie to buy a take-out lunch, which we walked over to a nearby park to eat on a bench! :) Mrs. MM and my niece each had an individual sized quiche, while The Teen opted for a brie sandwich (tons of brie in a baguette) and we all shared a salad of tiny mozzarella balls and cherry tomatoes with pesto. We had some special strawberries for dessert. Drinks for all and a perfectly good lunch for a reasonable amount of money.
The weather had turned rather warm for May, the mercury hitting 80F or more, hence the proliferation of folks in the park, some half naked, catching rays while enjoying their lunch. The only real risk of eating al fresco like this? Pigeon poop. Hahahaha. Okay, in case you were wondering if we ONLY ate our way through Paris, from here we went to the Eiffel Tower and environs, then off to a museum for a couple of hours before a 1-2 mile walk home through well-known squares and neighborhoods to work up an appetite for dinner… :)