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30th Anniversary report

swannee | Mar 1, 201504:23 PM

We went to Paris for 4 days for our 30th two weeks ago. I used to go to Paris several times a year for many years--I grew up speaking French--but we hadn't been in a while. We stayed in the 5th, Hotel Saint Cristophe, very pleasant and nice neighborhood with "old-fashioned" feel.
We ended up with a high number of Brasserie meals, at Brasserie Lipp in the 6th and Brassierie Flo in the 9th. Both were good in traditional ways--we ate fish at Lipp which may not be the best thing there (though both sole meunière and loup sauvage were very good) and the experience was good. At Flo we ate choucroute and it was excellent. We found to our horror Brasserie de l'Ile St. Louis closed (on a Monday night--is that new??) at ate a nearby place that was a true rip-off joint where they added more in taxes etc. than the price of the mediocre food (on a menu which said service compris to boot). It was the place just across the street.
We ate at Semilla's in the 6th on Valentine's Day, it had not been hard to reserve 3 days ahead, though it was jammed. Excellent, rather straighforward ingredient oriented cuisine and friendly service, a wonderfully light tarte à l'oignon, carré de porc and fromages for me, bettraves and chèvre, duck with turnips, and sorbets for my wife with a really good Gigondas.
As a sentimental trip to the past, we ate at Tour d'Argent and managed to get the second best table overlooking the Seine and the apse of Notre Dame. It is not the most memorable or creative food, but almost all was perfect, and the milieu and service were fabulous. We had a series of amuses (pâtés and a salsify broth), quenelles and coquilles St. Jacques for me, a cauliflower truffle velouté and the famous duck for Madame, an array of some rather odd sorbets and glaces (salty??), and huge assortiment of friandises including a wonderful tea cake in a basket to take home.
We tried for chocolat at Angelina's, but the queue was too long. I didn't have one really good croissant in 4 days, but that must be bad luck.

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