petite anglaise

December 4, 2006


Filed under: good time girl — petiteanglaiseparis @ 12:20 pm

The petite anglaise is mainly nocturnal at weekends, or at least on those weekends when she does not have the care of her offspring. This weekend was a textbook example.

On Friday night I started off the evening at a bloggers get together Richard’s beautiful loft apartment in the Marais, where I met a whole host of contributors to The Paris Blog. Much seems to have been made of the fact that I arrived with my own gin, tonic and lemon but this was all part of a master plan – to stick to the same drink all evening – which I’m sure my body was grateful for the next day.

Once the party was over, I went on to dance a good portion of the night away with a girlfriend in the distinctly grungy Batofar where the first Friday of every month is “New Wave Day”. I love the Batofar for its lack of dress code, the fact that the people are all there for the music, and get wildly enthusiastic when certain French crowd pleasers (Indochine, Visage) are played, but I must say, now that I’ve been to a few of these nights, I’m starting to notice a distinct lack of variety in the playlist. It was a pleasant surprise to hear Siouxsie and the Banshees “Peekaboo” nonetheless…

Best chat up lines of the evening were:

To Meg: “You dance in a very 80s style. Do you like New Order?”
(One of the safest possible approaches to adopt at New Wave Day?)

To me: “I think you are the most beautiful girl in the room. What’s your name?”
(taken with a pinch of salt the first time, due to enlarged state of suitor’s pupils; even less flattering the second time, less than half an hour later)

On Saturday I roused myself with some reluctance at 5pm (having missed daylight altogether) and managed to muster up the energy to attend a friend‘s leaving party in the Paris office of the Daily Telegraph, housed in a beautiful apartment with panoramic views overlooking the Tuileries. It was well worth venturing out for, and I was even introduced to the British Ambassador and his wife. I pondered over whether to talk to them about Left Bank and its ending involving a dashing, single British ambassador, and then thought better of the idea.

The last outing of the weekend was a pilgrimage to the left bank, to the Café de Flore, to meet up with some Australian friends for a spot of Sunday brunch. If rude, incompetent waiters and indifferent, overpriced food is your thing, I can heartily recommend it. Personally, I think I’ll stick to an occasional hot chocolate upstairs in future. After that brief but ill-advised outing during daylight hours, I retired to my boudoir for a nap before the return of Tadpole.

Now, your turn. I’d like to shamelessly pick your brains and hear about where you would eat/drink/dance on your ideal weekend in Paris. Hopefully a subject which will give me a much deserved break from the very wearing comments box vitriol I’ve been experiencing lately. So?*

*Second consecutive post without punchline. Please proceed to paypal if you require a subscription refund.


  1. I live in Cannes and my week-ends would probably seem utterly boring to you, but having had lunch at the Café de Flore once (came in just because it was oh-so-famous), I can confirm the utterly dreadful quality of the food and that it was indeed outrageously overpriced. What’s more, when I went to the lavatories, I saw a waiter exiting them in such a hurry that he didn’t wash his hands. Yuck.

    Comment by Guillaume Laurent — December 4, 2006 @ 12:38 pm

  2. Sorry I can’t answer your question about eating out in Paris, I don’t know it very well and can only recommend Paul for delicious hot chocolate and croissants for breakfast – not ideal for a nightbird!
    Please don’t take it to heart when people write unpleasant comments. Now that your fame has spread there are bound to be a few jealous ‘critics’ who want to put you down (I half suspect that some may even want to take advantage of your readership to promote their own blog and by being controversial they hope to increase ‘visits) but the vast majority of your readers appreciate your qualities as a writer.

    By the way, excuse my ignorance but what are those little boxes that have appeared after each post now? Is it to your advantage if we click on them to ‘add to’ whatever??

    Comment by Sablonneuse — December 4, 2006 @ 12:51 pm

  3. Hi,
    thanks for mentioning the party and my loft. I totally get what u are saying about Cafe Flore, especially if they get the slightest whiff they u are american, they become extra rude. I will only have an overpriced coffee there and draw the line at paying for bad overpriced food. I am always stumped where to go on a weekend that is not a zoo. I like Cafe Beuborg on a Sunday afternoon. although it’s crowded and the service is slow but not rude, it’s fun people watching and the food is decent and only slightly overpriced. I hope u didn’t take offense about the gin thing on my post about the party- i just thought it was funny and original.
    Take care.

    Comment by richard — December 4, 2006 @ 12:52 pm

  4. I know my “ideal day in Paris” off by heart, since when time allows I try to re-act my perfect Saturday whenever I can…

    Early morning breakfast at nearby café (hot chocolate, pain au chocolate, etc.) followed by metro ride to either the Porte de Vanves flea market or Saint-Ouen. Spend the rest of the morning trawling through bric a brac and buried treasures, in search of perfect find… Lunch at “Chez Louisette”, hidden in the depths of the Saint Ouen market, a rowdy French bistro complete with kitschy jazz singers, screaming waitresses and unbeatable Edif Piaf renditions. Afternoon spent lingering in the shops of the Marais, visiting the Pompidou Centre or shopping at Les Grands Magazines. Dinner with friends at cozy French resto (current favourite “17ieme” on rue de Guersant). Ahh..take me back there today….

    Comment by Just Dazzle — December 4, 2006 @ 1:00 pm

  5. Having lived in St Germain for a while I was always amazed that locals would loyally go to Flore, hand in hand with masses of tourists. I would suggest the Cafe Bonaparte instead on rue Bonaparte. For people watching & a great meal I’d choose Lipp, a Paris institution just across the street from Flore. End the afternoon on the pont des Arts, with some Amorino ice cream from rue de Buci…

    Comment by May — December 4, 2006 @ 1:09 pm

  6. As a London dweller I obviously can’t recommend anywhere cool in Paris to go for a night out, but have to say that for future reference I have made a note of a couple of places that you have mentioned.

    And ignore the vitriol, I think it says more about the commenters responsible than anything else. I know it sounds silly, but I rather suspect they are jealous.

    Keep up the good work!

    Comment by stressqueen — December 4, 2006 @ 1:18 pm

  7. Having only just found this recently, and you kindly replying to my email on sunday i still wait with anticipation as exactly where to go next Friday in Paris for my 40th birthday.
    I have tried numerous establishments but they are all fully booked.
    So any ideas greatly appreciated.

    Comment by Annabell — December 4, 2006 @ 2:10 pm

  8. well, i don’t know about dancing any more – back when i was living in paris, more or less directly under the pont alexandre iii, we used to go to an anarchist club called athanor in the rue des saints peres. must be long gone now – along with the old polly magoo. last time i was over, i went to le baron rouge – and very nice it was too. but is that a terrible cliche now? in london, i’d do brunch at smith’s of smithfield. i highly recommend it, next time you swan over to meet your publisher.

    Comment by mad muthas — December 4, 2006 @ 2:23 pm

  9. Lovely picture of Petite in Richard’s blog. Nice to see she can still smile after all.

    Comment by Pierre L — December 4, 2006 @ 2:46 pm

  10. I always take guests to Pain vin fromage on rue geoffroy angevin behind the centre pompidou, because you get a big pile of cheese, bread, wine and salad and that’s it. It looks like nothing and tastes amazing. They do regional plates, plus raclette and fondue. So damn good.

    Comment by Katie — December 4, 2006 @ 2:56 pm

  11. I agree with number 6. I too don’t know Paris well enough to comment, but your weekend sounds great.

    And I do hope Petite that you are fully aware of how much the rest of us non vitriolers love you?

    (Loved this btw: *Second consecutive post without punchline. Please proceed to paypal if you require a subscription refund.)

    You are very funny and very much appreciated!


    Comment by Sally Lomax — December 4, 2006 @ 2:57 pm

  12. Right then, even I can do this one:

    1)Something ‘avec frites’
    2)Something ‘vin rouge’
    3)Something where you wear a tuxedo and try not step on your partners toes.

    Comment by greavsie — December 4, 2006 @ 3:18 pm

  13. I am in full agreement with the suggestion that La Louisette is amazing. Chez Lipp is an institution; back in the day, before he was President, I regularly found myself sitting next to M. Mitterand.

    But (and without getting into Anna mode) I must ride to the defence of the Flore.

    Okay, my first visit was long before Péah was born. And it is more expensive than many cafés. But in recent years, when visits to Paris are twice, with luck thrice annually, I am welcomed with a smile of recognition and a handshake. And that is, as the MasterCard spots claim… “Priceless!”

    I suppose I’ve bought into the whole Left Bank mystique over the years. It simply works as well for me as it does for the brilliant Kate Muir.

    Comment by Malcolm Thomson — December 4, 2006 @ 3:20 pm

  14. Ahhhh … maybe now I will know of somewhere to eat when I finally hop across to France. After 8 months in the U.K. I am in need of a change of menu.

    Comment by Abilene — December 4, 2006 @ 3:36 pm

  15. Niiice

    Comment by Joh — December 4, 2006 @ 4:06 pm

  16. I’m a big fan of Cafe Hugo in the Place des Vosges for a meal – the steack tartare is a winner. Otherwise I head to rue des canettes next to St Sulpice. I haven’t been here long enough to find any favourite bars yet, but for breakfast Joe Allen’s near les halles serves the best eggs benedict late breakfast this side of any significant ocean (hardly traditional french cuisine, but i get benedictine cravings, and it’d be a good way to sober up). Can’t help with dancing help either, sorry.

    Comment by Andrew — December 4, 2006 @ 4:22 pm

  17. Comment 8 mentioned Baron Rouge. I don’t know if it is a cliché yet but I like it. At the moment they sell huge plates of oysters out the front at lunch time on weekends, and they have a nice cheese plater, as well as a good selection of wines.

    My favorite place for brunch in Paris is Le Pain Quotidien, in the marais. It is very popular and a bit pricey but I suggest instead of going for the set brunch which is way too huge for one girl to eat, order a few things from the menu and share. You usually have to queue to get a table but the food is worth it.

    Mix Club is a very modern “boite” to go out dancing, but I think it really depends who the DJ is on the night. I saw Pete Tong there and had a great night but the crowd was a bit on the young side. I am actually still looking for a club in Paris that I really feel comfortable in, being 30. Maybe I’ll give the batofar a go on New Wave Day.

    Comment by bec — December 4, 2006 @ 4:32 pm

  18. Don’t you like la rue des Rosiers on sunny sundays ?
    Have a fallafel in the restaurant wich is in front of Korcarz (sorry I forgot the name of the restaurant), eat an Apfelstruddel from Korcarz if you have enough appetite after the fallafel, and after this, fight for not sleeping because of the “digestion” and buy a wonderful tea chez Mariage Freres rue du Bourg Tibour. You can also make some shopping in the lovely shops in the neighbourhood. If you don’t know le Marais on sunny sundays afternoons, I think you miss a lot.

    (sorry for my so baaaad english)

    Comment by V. — December 4, 2006 @ 5:35 pm

  19. I might not stay in Paris – maybe hop a TGV to somewhere…

    Comment by Terry — December 4, 2006 @ 6:15 pm

  20. I have to say, I hardly remember eating at all on any of my visits to Paris, let alone where I ate. I suspect this is due to the fact that every time I’ve been I’ve ended up getting horrendously drunk and wiping the entire trip from my memory.

    I have a hazy recollection of eating lamb so rare it was practically still bleating in a small restaraunt somewhere near one of the hotels I stayed in, but since I don’t remember the name of the restaraunt, the hotel or which part of Paris I was in, I guess that isn’t much help.

    My only other memory of eating in Paris was sitting in the McDonalds on the Champs-Élysées with the mother of all hangovers at 10 in the morning trying to force down a big mac before the return trip to the UK. Actually, I think that’s happened at least twice now …..

    Comment by Ignorminious — December 4, 2006 @ 6:19 pm

  21. hahaha wow you are describing a regular weekend in my teenage days. im really glad that life does not end when you turn 30!

    Comment by magik — December 4, 2006 @ 6:35 pm

  22. I’m a huge fan of couscous, which is unavailable in Germany, so my evenings in Paris are spent wandering about the 18th between Blvdes Clichy, Barbès and Caulaincourt looking in doorways. We have seldom been disappointed, and often quite well pleased.

    Can’t tell you any names, I doubt whether we’ve ever been to the same place twice. The hunting is part of the pleasure.

    Comment by udge — December 4, 2006 @ 7:54 pm

  23. Of course my ideal weekend would have to involve the Marais somewhere. Maybe also a dinner at the Coupole or some other largish restaurant and perhaps one of those Sunday tea dances that I have been hearing about.

    Comment by Lost in France — December 4, 2006 @ 8:12 pm

  24. I was once seduced by a beautiful man named Thierry on a night out in Paris, which made me feel ultra-special.

    But then, years later, I was told that EVERYBODY gets seduced by a beautiful man named Thierry when they go on a night out in Paris.

    Comment by Annie Rhiannon — December 4, 2006 @ 8:24 pm

  25. Café de Flore… N’est-ce pas à la terrasse de ce café, reconstituée dans le “Hollowdeck” (? ça sonnait comme ça) de son vaisseau spatial, que le capitaine Jean-Luc Picard retrouve, dans un épisode de “Star Trek – The Next Generation”, une femme qu’il a aimée jadis? Désolée d’apprendre que c’est plutôt moche… Je suis de Québec, et mes quelques séjours à Paris ne m’ont pas amenée dans cet établissement.

    Comment by Choubine — December 4, 2006 @ 8:57 pm

  26. Hi Petite,
    My days of exciting nightlife in Paris (or London, or anywhere…)are (temporarily, ish, I hope…) suspended due to being the mum of a 1 year old. I’m nocturnal, but not in a good way.

    However, we would like to visit Paris in spring and any recommendations as to child friendly days out, locales etc would be gratefully received.

    Comment by sarahdee — December 4, 2006 @ 9:42 pm

  27. “Nono” rue de Tourtille is definitely a good chill-out place to end the week, with corsican charcuterie, cheese plates, beautiful tasteful wines. As far as by that time it’s just thursday/friday, it doesn’t kill budget for the rest of the week-end.
    If it’s thursday, dancing afterwards would be the brasilian nights with Jota and Companhia at the Opus (la scene bastille this week, before diner this time,though).
    If it’s friday, alternate would be a tartare at Charbon/Justine, followed randomly by a drop at odeon area (BF or bedford), a quick drink at Harry’s near opera, a gig anywhere between Oberkampf and Glazart.
    Saturday morning’d start around 1 or 2pm. Skip afternoon ‘cos shopping is pain, museums overcrowded on saturday, crowd everywhere. A good rugby match in “Aire Ona” (new basq family bar in 12e) would do for atmosphere and big laughing(even got paid a tournée by an old english fellow there!). As well as for preparing apero. Apero would do Chez Gudule on the way to Nation! Or at JEmmapes (where Sly can feed pretty well(no mistake on “Sly”, he’s no english but from Poland: never get into a drinking challenge with him).
    “La Cave de l’Os a Moelle” should then sounds fine for dinner. Afterwards, everything is open, Nouveau Casino, Batofar, Rex, rue monsieur Leprince…
    Sunday hangover has to be cured by solid brunch! Prune is very nice for that especially during summer, Le diable des Lombards (number5) as well!
    So many places, so many peoples to meet, PA, ask the same question by spring/summer ans the answers will be very numerous, including picnics by seine border, peniches roofs near pont des arts, or getting (on purpose) trapped in buttes chaumont with booze and music instruments til the next mornin’…

    Comment by Mardo — December 4, 2006 @ 10:07 pm

  28. You can catch beautiful panoramic views overlooking the Tuileries in the newly renovated Les Arts Décoratifs, especially on a Sunday afternoon.
    Plus you get to see Jeanne Lanvin’s pink and black art deco bathroom..
    Then venture out into the Tuilleries for a Paul’s hot chocolate.
    Cross rue de Rivoli for a wander through W.H. Smith’s bookstore. Then over one block for more wandering and vicarious window shopping on rue St. Honoré.
    End up at Ladurée for tea and macarons.
    And finally walk accross Place de Concord just as the lights go on at the Eiffel tower.
    Then walk back along blvd St.Germain to the heart of the 7th.
    This, after a morning spent at the Salon du Chocolat and lunch at Vieux-Columbiers.
    You should be ready to collapse by now…
    I can’t cope with imagining an entire weekend :)

    Comment by ParisBreakfasts — December 4, 2006 @ 10:13 pm

  29. hey! speak for yourself;I’ve never been seduced by a man named Thierry on a night out in Paris.

    Comment by bob — December 4, 2006 @ 10:19 pm

  30. My Dear Petite – I’m sorry I cannot recommend a breezy club, as I have never been closer to Paris than the shores of Boston. If you want a great place to hang out in Woodstock, NY, then I’m your girl! But I did want to comment on bringing your own booze to a party. My circle of friends and I would never consider doing anything else, for several reasons: 1. One gets exactly what one wants, every time and 2. We may want Grey Goose, but we all know our wonderful hostess has four children and a mortgage. I call it considerate, as well as quirky!

    There have been some snotty comments lately, but rest assured that your semi-daily readers love your stories and the charm you bring to everyday events.

    Comment by Woodstockgurl — December 4, 2006 @ 10:27 pm

  31. Intrigued, I went to look for the vitriol.

    It’s true: there’s been a lot of criticism in the comments box lately, some of it quite rude.

    But I wouldn’t say that absolutely none of it was valid.

    Petite, the archives are full of stunning portraits of Paris in its many aspects. Some of your past posts are glorious prose, among the best I’ve read.

    Could it be that the blog is now the poor relation to the book?

    Excuse me for asking this. I’ve been wondering for a while but I didn’t dare ask before.

    Comment by Claire Farrimond — December 4, 2006 @ 10:43 pm

  32. I certainly don’t intend for the blog to be the book’s poor relation, and as the book covers some events in my past, it’s actually very refreshing to write the blog when I have something to say. It’s light relief.

    Of course one very obvious change in my life is that I am spending a lot of time alone in front of a computer writing, which doesn’t always lend itself to having a wealth of bloggable material.

    This blog constantly evolves alongside my life, readers come and go and the types of post will always vary according to my mood, what I’ve been up to, and the other things going on in my life I’m not telling you about.

    And as I write it for myself, you’ll understand I hope that I don’t write Paris posts to order. You’ll just have to stick around, if you have the patience, and wait for the mood to take me…

    Comment by petite — December 4, 2006 @ 11:16 pm

  33. Claire Farrimond: Are you the Claire Farrimond, as in Russian Monasticism? Wow!

    Comment by Jim — December 4, 2006 @ 11:48 pm

  34. That’s OK. I was intending to stick around, as I have done for some considerable time already.

    As for Paris posts, they’re by no means the only things that have made me keep coming back to this blog daily for the best part of a year. I’ve always liked your observant eye and ability to describe yourself with detachment as part of the picture.

    So keep it up.

    *crawls back into corner.

    Comment by Claire Farrimond — December 4, 2006 @ 11:55 pm

  35. Jim: yes, that one. Er, why?

    Comment by Claire Farrimond — December 4, 2006 @ 11:56 pm

  36. Dear Petite,

    I have been reading your blog for many, many months now. I remember the very first post I discovered included ‘Gorecki’ by Lamb, and from my first reading of it I was entirely gripped. As an English student, I really love your writing – it seems to distil life//human emotion in a completely accessible, yet eloquent way.

    And for me – the perfect place to go in Paris – a little tabac opposite the Place de Clichy metro station. Totally unpretentious, not at all the ‘place to be’ – but my two dearest friends and I spent a very drunken night there once in the summer of 2005, and I have never since had so much fun!

    Good luck with everything. And thank you for sharing your life :) X

    Comment by jolly jolly ella jolly — December 5, 2006 @ 12:18 am

  37. My husband has lived in Paris (for about a year) and one of his favorite restaurants was Sud-Ouest Monceau in Rue Meissonier. I’ve only been there once and the food was really good.

    Comment by Veerle — December 5, 2006 @ 12:18 am

  38. You might take a look into
    It’s quite nice.


    Richard of eTidings

    Comment by Richard of eTidings — December 5, 2006 @ 12:39 am

  39. Limes surely?

    Thought it might have been a Friesian themed soirée until the flora became apparent. Meg looks devilishly cheeky.

    Dilated pupils, surely in awe?

    Welsh Rarebit at Flores + attitude = nearly worthwhile

    Butt undulating at Le Tryptique h- Tried Vitriol once but found the cocktails a tad sulphuric and the punch line-less, or would that be lime?

    Comment by fibsor — December 5, 2006 @ 12:44 am

  40. my craving for cheddar did indeed lead me to try the welsh rarebit, which was a bit disappointing and very soggy.

    Comment by petite — December 5, 2006 @ 12:53 am

  41. As per usual, I am far too late to even think that my comment will be read, but I’ll chip in anyway.

    Our favourite place to eat in Paris is “Piccolo Teatro”, in Le Marais. We searched it out one night last year while staying for a long weekend.

    It was friendly, small, charming, romantic… I’ve run out of words. If you look for reviews of it online, everybody raves about it – and it’s warranted.

    Comment by Jonathan — December 5, 2006 @ 12:58 am

  42. that’s the welsh for you.

    Comment by fibsor — December 5, 2006 @ 1:10 am

  43. i for one would LOVE to be seduced by a man named Thierry in paris.

    that being said, i have never been to paris. i dream of one day doing so (which is how i stumbled upon your blog, oh-so-long ago…), but i *have* been to provence, so i guess i can say that any day that involves pain au chocolat and coffee in the morning, strolls through historic wonders many, many centuries older than my own country, and an evening with some pastis or absinthe followed by a fantasic, lingering meal over much wine and conversation with my boyfriend is one that i’ll gladly take. what a fantastic, magical place you live in petite. i know it doesn’t always seem that way to you from your perspective, but there are many people out here who DREAM of being where you are every day.

    Comment by franko — December 5, 2006 @ 1:29 am

  44. I’m up WAY past my bedtime. Hi there, Petite.

    Just to second #10’s suggestion, and there are lots of other yummy places in the Marais. I’d follow up with a visit to the gorgeous Big Bang exhibit at the Pompidou – it’s world-class, and I just got back from a visit to the MoMA so I do have a point of comparison. If you can time it for late afternoon, the view from the top floor cafe is stunning at sunset – and if you have the budget, the food is pretty excellent, also.

    There’s a delightful bistro over by La Motte Picquet-Grenelle called La Gitane, next to the Ecole Militaire on the 15th side. But I doubt you can dance after eating there. However, nearby is the Casa Alcalde if you’re looking for Spanish Basque tapas and other fare.

    Unfortunately, I haven’t been dancing in so long that every relevant part has practically atrophied.

    Comment by Alethea — December 5, 2006 @ 1:57 am

  45. My favorite place to dine when we are in Paris is Restaurant Perraudin
    157 Rue Saint Jacques 75005

    Everything is wonderufl. It has been years, so if you go and it is not good please don’t tell me. I need my dreams.

    Comment by Mad William — December 5, 2006 @ 3:53 am

  46. Though it is – yikes – nearly five years since I was last in Paris I suspect that I’ll head back to the Place de la Contrescarpe just off the Rue Mouffetard. Many, many happy days there, lounging over coffee and wine and smoking too much and just letting the day slip agreeably away.

    Then there’s a lovely – to my mind anyway since I first went there 15 years ago – cafe at the foot of th eMouffetard (Cafe Bourgogne I think) which is unpretentious and has the proper sort of rickety old furniture and that is great for catching a final glass of wine, sitting outside as the waiters clean up and prod you into leaving before you’re ready to. But for once this doesn’t irritate, it just makes you savour the moment, trying to bottle time before it evaporates. Then you stroll home, content yet wistful in the way you can be only when youre in Paris.

    (Oh, that and finding any bakery and buying bread at 4am. Always gives you the warm feeling of having found a special treat and a personalised bakery service. Even better if you;r ein black tie of course and just a teeny bit tipsy).

    Comment by Alex — December 5, 2006 @ 4:32 am

  47. I’d have to say the Buddha Bar…but ONLY because I’ve been to the one here in NYC and I’m curious as to what the BB in Paris is like.

    Comment by Mlle Smith — December 5, 2006 @ 5:18 am

  48. re Petite #40
    Once I tried Welsh rarebit in a brasserie in Charleville. It consisted of bread – not toast! – swimming in a sea of cheese ‘sauce’ apparently made with beer. YUCK never again!

    Comment by Sablonneuse — December 5, 2006 @ 10:05 am

  49. Welsh rarebit is cheese on toast covered in spilt beer? Good to know I’m staying true to my roots; I eat that every saturday night after the pub.

    Comment by Annie Rhiannon Atkins — December 5, 2006 @ 10:19 am

  50. Having only ever spent one weekend in Paris in the mid 80’s and not even a dirty one at that, I really have no idea what would be an ideal place to enjoy oneself.
    As for the vitriol, it’s only a bunch of jealous wankers who really should be totally ignored.
    I bet they trawl through all the blogs pontificating on something they have no talent for themselves.

    Comment by AussieGil — December 5, 2006 @ 12:16 pm

  51. Is Chartres* still open ? Its a fantastic restaurant from the 1920’s. From what I remember, it’s around the corner from Hard Rock Cafe. Beware though, its very popular still (with Parisiennes rather than tourists) so you actually have to get there early. Watch out for the waiters who scribble your order on the white paper table cloths..

    * I think thats the name, it might be called Chartier though… sorry its been about 10 years since my last visit.

    Comment by Ourmanindubai — December 5, 2006 @ 12:46 pm

  52. I’ll be in paris from Thursday evening for a long weekend (including Monday) so I can more or less tell you what I’ll be doing. This is the first time I’ve written to the blog, and let me just say that I was born in GB but have lived in Italy for years, since soon after leaving university. Anyway, at the risk of sounding incredibly intellectual, I go to Paris for:
    – the bookshops (incredible bargains at Gibert on new “used” books
    – the cinemas
    Hope to get in 3 or four films at the weekend as well as a comforting bowl of Pho in a tiny Vietnamese pho place in rue Volta (3eme), definitely a visit to Pain vin et fromage (have already heard of it but liked the review above from someone) and generally browsing and breezing through the city!
    All the best

    Comment by Joan — December 5, 2006 @ 1:11 pm

  53. First timer…

    Resto – has to be FISH on the left bank. Tasty, GVFM and great wine.
    Bar – never been convinced by any in Paris to be honest. Best times have been had in “the bar with no name” in Bastille which is good and FUBAR but wouldnt recommend that one really.
    Dancing – now i think of it i never did that once in the whole 6 years i lived in Paris unless it was in someone’s flat.

    Something to do next time i come visiting…

    Comment by EP — December 5, 2006 @ 3:09 pm

  54. Even the best need some rest, however randy they are. Come back to Paris later and I’ll see about fitting you into the schedule.


    Comment by Laughing Crow — December 5, 2006 @ 3:25 pm

  55. petite, just popping above the parapet to wish you well in your exciting new life.
    I did click back to the vitriol (yowza!), and I don’t know how you do it. Grace under pressure at its best.

    I’m a quite p/a reader so I can only add my 2 cents but if you want to temporarily close the comment box for a quiet life who could blame you. You are sharing slices with us, not inviting people to help you make the sandwich.

    Myself, I’ll be reading you straight up and skipping the comments for a bit. You get diluted when 17 idiots feel the need to filter your words.

    Much love, Jem

    Comment by Jem — December 5, 2006 @ 5:05 pm

  56. I can’t help you with the Paris eateries but in a “tedious-link” style I can tell you that there is a lovely little cafe/bar in Leicester (UK) called “The Left Bank” – good for the ill-advised Sunday-after-a-saturday-night outings!

    Comment by Louisa — December 5, 2006 @ 5:15 pm

  57. So…I am not so habituee with Paris…as a little girl that will be a woman soon I am having fun feeling pretty…experiencing with every occasion the midnight laughing that cleanses me and the love…at HOME!

    Comment by Momo — December 5, 2006 @ 6:52 pm

  58. I wouldn’t dismiss the dilated pupils as such a bad sign… au contraire, it is probably a very good one!

    Comment by Marcos — December 5, 2006 @ 8:13 pm

  59. Petite, you say ‘readers come and go’, but quite a few of us have been with you from the start of your blog, been through all your ups and downs with you,& laughed and cried with you. Yours is still the first thing I look at after my mail. So carry on just as you are, and let the saddos who don’t like it go hang.

    Comment by suze — December 5, 2006 @ 9:00 pm

  60. I like the NordSud at Jules Joffrin (opposite the Marie du 18eme. Great seafood at this time of year.

    Also in the 18th, Le Fin Bec, on Rue Damremont. It’s very ‘de chez nous’ and most of the people there are regulars. Locals also pop in to get Maurice to open the main door to one of the local appartments which sticks a bit if you don’t do the key thing properly.

    For the ultimate smoky dive – fag ash everywhere, slightly tousled ladies, workmen from Proprete de Paris – try the Vizir. It’s a bar-tabac on the road that runs between Galleries Lafayette and Bouchara. A brilliant tissue- (and reality-) restorer if you’re doing the Grands Magazins. Good cremes and yummy croques.

    Comment by Cinquecento — December 5, 2006 @ 10:26 pm

  61. Hmmmm…was going to leave a v. different comment, but atmosphere has all changed….
    I still read your work regularly, Petite, but find it increasingly difficult to leave comments…
    Shall ‘lurk’ for a while! Best wishes as always to you and Tadders and LOADS of luck with all the stuff coming up for you in the future!

    Comment by Lucy-Jane — December 6, 2006 @ 12:08 am

  62. Just read the famous vitriol on your Uptown Girl posting and couldn’t help but wonder why you got so upset. To paraphrase a now politically incorrect anecdote: the only thing two people can agree on is how much a third should pay to charity. You’ve been sharing parts of your life on the internet for quite a while, so it’s inevitable (and refreshingly provocative) when some posters declare a different point of view. The debate is healthy and everyone will continue to lead their lives in the way they choose, albeit a little more aware of the diversity of opinion we can encounter when we rattle cages. Documenting your life to a largely anonymous audience, you have to be prepared for the negative, as well as the apparently overwhelmingly positive, response.

    Comment by Kleiber — December 6, 2006 @ 12:35 am

  63. Wow, I’m so jealous. Have you met Vincent Cassel or Jean Reno yet??

    Comment by Bob King Neverland III — December 6, 2006 @ 2:26 am

  64. Petite,

    I really enjoy reading your blog and your punch lines. Please, don’t let others take what is part of your life. Keep your spirit high, and think of all your devoted readers!

    Comment by Karina — December 6, 2006 @ 3:37 am


    some of my favorites…

    Travel to Paris to see Sylvie Guillem dance, Paris Opera or Ballet, and catch up with friends. Not prone to spending a night on a dance floor..rather watch the theatre.

    Will spend 3 days in Paris in may 07 to do just this and catch up with close friends. Then head off for some Mountain bike riding in Spain and UK…


    Comment by simon — December 6, 2006 @ 4:57 am

  66. Funny enough. Things are not that different here in Auckland, new Zealand. I would love to be part of that party. I am sure I could take most of conversations and tips on blogging.

    Keep posting chick… You are unique.


    Comment by Roberto — December 6, 2006 @ 5:15 am

  67. eat: Crepes from a a street vendor
    drink: Vin Chaud to keep out the cold
    dance: in the street as I serenade my sweetheart
    vitriol: Only read the good stuff and have another cup of Vin Chaud! Life’s too short; you write well and have turned calamity to your advantage. We all come here for different reasons and enjoy different posts; some for tadpole, others for Paris and others for the lovescapades. Just keep on doing what you love for the reasons you started and ignore those threats not to buy your book. There is always someone who is willing to leap to a conclusion on minimal evidence which is why the tabloids do so well. Kudos to you for letting others post their views freely and without censorship. Take strength from those who defend you!

    Comment by trickyd — December 6, 2006 @ 5:54 am

  68. Saturday – book shopping on the rue des écoles or ‘proper’ shopping on the rue de rennes for the afternoon. Unless the rugby’s on, in which case it’s a trip to see Eric at the Long Hop and yell at the telly with other brits. Then sundowners on place de la contrescarpe.

    Sunday – Breakfast at one of the places on Place du Bour Tibourg near the hotel de ville, a wander through the Marais, possibly stopping at l’As de Falafel for lunch, a browse through the paper followed by whichever exhibitition/film we’ve managed to agree on (the morning having been spent arguing the toss).

    Meals – Chez Papa on rue de Layfayette or any of the Asian restaurants on Rue de Torcy (I like the salads at TinTin)

    Drinks – either tried and tested Oberkampf/Bastille or discovering new places (to me at least) in Montmartre.

    ahhhh, bliss…

    Comment by sas — December 6, 2006 @ 10:26 am

  69. (Hello, long time reader, first time commenter…)

    Wow, I’m definitely going to bookmark this page and use it for reference! I’m spending two terms in Paris as a student this year, and so far my perfect weekend – perhaps a lazy weekday, I don’t want too many crowds around! – would include:

    – lazy pain au chocolat and coffee sitting on a bench in the local park (20e)
    – hop on a bus for a gentle ride through the rive droite, getting off at the Louvre for a walk through the Tuileries and probably a visit to the museum, or Les Arts Decoratifs
    – late lunch in tiny cafe on the little road cutting through the Ile Saint-Louis. Soup, pasta something and a crepe au sucre with a little vin rouge.
    – walk along the Seine and into the chic quartier around Saint-Sulpice/Saint-Germain for window shopping
    – quick look in La Grande Epicerie of Le Bon Marche, to admire all the rows and rows of delicious food (and to exlaim in horror at the price of a packet of digestive biscuits)
    – back on the bus, to the Place des Vosges in time for sunset and dinner at a very good and unpretentious restaurant called Chez Janou, just off the square in a quiet corner
    – cinema!

    Comment by Miranda — December 6, 2006 @ 1:16 pm

  70. Moved to Paris 3 weeks ago to live with my boyfriend (seemed like a good idea at the time….!) & have been feeling a little low, so great to read about your nights out & stuff, reminds me of home & crazy times with the ‘girls’, whilst giving me hope that all is not lost! Sounds like you’ve been through the mill a bit to say the least but also that you have a lot of supporters – reading through your blog for the first time I’m not surprised – keep up the good work! (& thanks for making me smile – beer in knickers a particular favourite xxx)

    Comment by Gem — December 6, 2006 @ 1:25 pm

  71. Hi,

    voici quelques suggestions :

    -Evening bar: I love having some beers or cocktails at the Caveau Montpensier (
    Check the Palais Royal Galeries by night before and/or after the drinks.

    -Night-clubs: the Rex ( has the best sound system in Europe, but you have to like techno.

    -Brunches: rue du Cherche Midi, around the Saint Placide intersection, you can choose between the Nemrod, the Coffee Lounge or l’Artisan des Saveurs.

    -For a Sunday evening restaurant, I recommend “la Cave de l’Os à Moelle”, rue Lourmel

    plus d’adresses sur



    Comment by Chrisos — December 6, 2006 @ 3:10 pm

  72. Totally agree with comment 62! Most of the comments you get, Petite, are positive, affirming, encouraging, admiring etc. – and they are justified. I love your blog and I think you write very well and very evocatively. But if choose to air even ‘slices’ of your life, you must be prepared for the odd dissenting voice. Of course you are a lioness protecting her cub and of course Anna was provocative; but, as you say, she is a parent herself and we all know (yes, I’m one too!) that we have strong views, once we produce children, as to how we bring them up! Surely, Anna has as much right to her comments, as the many, MANY readers who offer you their praise? It seems to me that you are choosing to take on such a minority and I notice that you are still apparently smarting – don’t bother! I would hate to think that you need to be shored up by endless praise (not to say that we don’t all like it!) and can’t cope with the odd criticism! It takes all sorts of people and all sorts of parents! Keep up the good work….

    Comment by Lindy — December 6, 2006 @ 7:17 pm

  73. I agree whole heartedly with , 62 & 72. Having been “mestangoed” on your site, I can understand you feeling smarted, but c’est la vie. You open yourself on the blog and we on the comment box for judgement.

    You write beautifully and surely your publishing deal tells you that? If not, maybe the thousands of positive comments? If not, maybe the millions of press coverage?

    Surely at this point, you have a sense of worth to just STAND and know that you can never satisy all of the people all of the time? Continued success and thanks for another slice of your life!

    Comment by Lisa — December 6, 2006 @ 8:31 pm

  74. Hi Petite

    I have just been looking at the finalists lists for the Weblog Awards, and I am stunned that you are not there. I wanted you to know that had I been choosing -and I do realise that I am a “nobdody” but hopefully a “nobody” with a sensible opinion – that you would definitely have been on the list.

    Personally I like a blog that you can “read”, which is why I write mine that way I do too. I used to be a big fan of John Diamond before he died, and I read Kate Muir every week. To me you join those heights. As you are possibly aware, I am a recent fan, as I only discovered the blogging world a couple of months ago, but since I found you I have read your site every day and enjoy it enormously.


    Comment by Sally Lomax — December 6, 2006 @ 8:43 pm

  75. it’s the nasty and off-the-wall posters like Anna (and Trevor) who rock things up and mke it so much fun; without them, your comments box would be a neverending litany of sycophantic drivel.

    Comment by Carruthers — December 6, 2006 @ 9:30 pm

  76. Lisa I love you.
    But was I absolutely wrong?

    Comment by mestengo — December 6, 2006 @ 11:33 pm

  77. jeez, good for you Petite. I work in a bitchy industry and have learnt that if people are bothered enough to bitch then you must be making someone jealous with your efforts. Anyway.

    After a recent trip to Paris I can recommend Le Crocodile in the latin quarter. It has a very very long cocktail list (311 at last count) and my attempts at intermediate-level french were happily received – they even spoke back to me in French! I had a great time and would recommend it for either a bar before a night out or your entire night out. Depends how much cocktail you can hold I guess…

    Comment by Marthe — December 7, 2006 @ 2:15 am

  78. You were completely right mestengo! I suitably admonished myself and went back in my box! Lisa

    Comment by Lisa — December 7, 2006 @ 11:54 am

  79. I can’t imagine a weekend in Paris and I’m so sorry you’ve had vitriolic comments. That sucks.

    Comment by Sophmom — December 7, 2006 @ 7:12 pm

  80. Anybody been to SOMO? If so, where is the nearest metro?
    Was trying to book Kong for my 40th birthday next Friday, I called 3 weeks ago to be told that I couldn’t book until 2 weeks in advance, phoned the following week, told i would have to book one week in advance, phoned today and guess what……..fully booked!!! So now i’ve booked SOMO as it had some good reviews.
    Wish me luck

    Comment by Annabell — December 7, 2006 @ 8:34 pm

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