Hello world! I am so excited to be making my Parsons Admission blog debut! Some of you might know me as the Associate Director of Undergraduate Admission here at Parsons, but I also moonlight as a Very Serious Eater. I’m that person who constantly is taking food photos on their iPhone and planning vacations around what I’ll eat in a particular place. Recently I visited our new Paris campus to help host a few events and was able to scope out a few spots to recommend the next time you visit Parsons Paris!
For Lunch on a Budget
Located in the Marais (near the Métro: St. Paul stop), this little spot boasts some of the best falafel I’ve ever tasted. You round a corner and the guys from L’As immediately come up to you to ask if you would like to sit inside or take away. I chose the take away option, handed over my euros and was given a slip of paper with a simple scribble. I handed it to the guy at the corner, who asked how spicy (I said very) and was promptly in possession of a delightful lunch!
There’s no real place to sit or stay, so I meandered down the street with my overflowing pita of goodness. Lots of other folks were also munching on curbs and in doorways, so my balancing act of trying to eat and walk was not unusual. Sometimes I feel like the layers of ingredients are uneven in a falafel pita, but not so at L’As. Every bite was well proportioned, spicy and just plain tasty.
For your parents to take you on a fancy night out
If you want to go a bit high end (and your parents are in town to take you somewhere nice), check out La Terrasse at The Westin which is conveniently located only a few blocks away from our Parsons Paris building in the 1st arrondissement. La Terrasse is located in the very center of the hotel with lots of lush greenery and a small pool complete with Greek statues.
I must confess to you all that I really don’t speak French. However, I am fairly good at reading menus, so I can at least typically somewhat figure out what I’m going to be eating. I started my meal with a light gazpacho and promptly followed that up with some of the most heavenly short ribs that have ever been concocted. One of my dining companions also let me try the haddock she ordered which was also delicious. My dessert was definitely the most pretty though, and it featured a type of baby strawberry that I still don’t entirely understand. Go and be classy!
Cream puffs. Beyond cute. Pure magic. Even though Odette is just a little storefront with coffee and cream puffs it will completely win your heart. There are a few seats outside, or you can get a gorgeous box to go. I felt like a chic, confident French girl while sitting there my chocolate and caramel puffs while sipping espresso. (My confidence was also boosted by the shop owner humoring my horrendous French.) This place will always be one of my first stops in Paris.
For a classic French dinner
And finally, if you want the checkered tablecloth/small sidewalk table/classic French food experience, please look no further than Chez Paul. Located near the Bastille, it was recommended by a friend who has lived in Paris for several years. Upon being seated outside, my dining companion and I were handed a handwritten French menu. Handwritten menus can be difficult even in English, so my dining companion and I saw with one menu between us to laboriously translate. Our waitress, who was so cute, offered to help us but was clearly relieved when we said we could figure it out. (Her English was only slightly better than our French.)
We finally decided on a salad with three cheeses, duck and a veal dish. The salad, which looks unassuming, had three different kinds of goat cheese on top and we absolutely delicious. One of the more amusing things about our meal was our veal dish. When ordering, there was one word in the title that we didn’t quite know. Upon its arrival at our table, we realized that we had indeed ordered an organ of some sort. In case you didn’t know, rugnons means kidneys. It was good, although not quite what we intended.
Hope you’re able to make it to some of these spots soon!
If you want to find out more about my food adventures, visit my blog ErinEatsEverything!