January 4, 2012
Les Papilles on rue Gay Lussac, offering great value for seasonal cooking and excellent wine. No choices, best to be an omnivore. Agape Substance on rue Mazarine, inventive cuisine with strong Japanese influence. Twelve courses but a good sense for portion control. Wine pairings were unexpected, if the sommelier was a bit to full of his cleverness. Candelaria on rue Saintonge. Authentic Mexican, better and more true than much of what passes for Mexican in California. After an inexpensive meal, retire to the neighboring bar for a cocktail. Really a treat.
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I came to Paris from San Francisco, where I lived for 20 years. Living in San Francisco, one quickly absorbs the culture of food and wine. Now I enjoy discovering Paris and its markets on my bicycle, and practicing the art of social dining.
The beer pairing, also, was uncommon. Half of the beers were French, not my instinctive choice for fine beer; of the six, I knew only two (and both are obscure). In addition to the fine food, you will discover new beers, even if you know your way around Belgians (of which, there were none)