La Rotonde and Their Mille Feuille
The brasserie, La Rotonde, is one of our regular stops when we’re in Paris. It’s been around since 1910 and is known to have been frequented by famous painters like Pablo Picasso, Diego Rivera, Federico Cantú, Henri Matisse and Tsuguharu Fujita (most of them depicted La Rotonde in their paintings) and writers/artists from the “Lost Generation” (F. Scott Fitzgerald, Matisse, T.S. Eliot, Sartre, Gertrude Stein, Alice B. Toklas and others). That has all faded into history but it’s still one of our favorite places. There’s nothing fancy, really, but it basically offers your consistently yummy traditional French brasserie fare at reasonable prices: all kinds of steaks (with frites, of course), seafood and more. Get a steak here with pepper sauce, though! It’s your best bet. The atmosphere is notable with its red-velvet and brass, famous paintings and energetic crowd. The service is friendly and excellent.
Lastly, save room for dessert! It’s hard to do here because the meals servings are big. Get their Mille Feuille! It’s sooo gooooood.
105, Boulevard Montparnasse (at the corner of Boulevard du Montparnasse and Boulevard Raspail)
75006 Paris France
Telephone: +33 1 43 26 48 26
Here’s the Video Sarko is Scrambling to Kill
I couldn’t resist posting this hilarious video. (Click on the image to watch the video.)
Carla Bruni Asks for a Finger Up Her Butt, in Seven Different Languages
France’s first lady is tres embarrassed that an old, raunchy episode of a talk show called Eurotrash has surfaced online. Now the French government is scrambling to get it yanked from YouTube. Here’s what they don’t want you to see.
Apparently the French government fought to remove a longer version of this video—in which Carla showcases a pair of “hot international sex guides” that teach international tramps how to say phrases like “Do you like my titties?” and “Put your finger in my bottom” in seven European languages—from YouTube. Eurotrash hosts Antoine de Caunes and designer Jean-Paul Gaultier (in the hot pink sailor suit, obviously) ooh and aah at the multilingual promiscuity of “Italy’s most elegant export.”
The yanked version apparently showed Carla discussing celebrity affairs with Mick Jagger and Eric Clapton. The Daily Mail reports Carla is “shocked and dismayed” at the video’s “sudden reappearance.”
Vitré and One Cute Vitréen
Vitré (Brittany, Ille-et-Vilaine) is the most well-preserved medieval village I’ve seen in France with its narrow streets of cobblestone,
surrounding ramparts and half-timbered houses.
The 11th century Château de Vitré showcases fairy tale towers and has historically proven to be one of the most powerful castles in history having not been occupied during the Hundred Years War. The English attempted to take it over many times, without success, even though they’d occupied the village.
The best part of our short trip, however, happened while we were meandering around the old village, taking photos, chatting, then suddenly, a local villager speeds by and grumpily yells, “You’re right to take photos. It’s beautiful here!” then he smiled ear to ear. My sweetie then says, “Oh, but we actually want to take a picture of you.” And this adorable man enthusiastically agreed.
Then we asked, “Will you stand like THIS?”* And he did! People of Vitre, you rock.
* My nephew has been posing for photos like this and we thought we’d find some competition for him. Actually, many travelers in France who we didn’t know agreed to do this.
Maison Larnicol: Playful Chocolate, Macarons, Kougn Amann
If for one reason you come into Maison Larnicol, the brainchild of Master Chocolatier and MOF, Georges Larnicol, it’s to marvel at his playful, colorful chocolate creations.
Oh but you should taste as much as possible, too. We dropped by his shop in Saint Malo (Brittany) but he has a whole slew of shops in these cities Auray, Bordeaux, Concarneau, Guerande, La Baule, Locronan, Nantes, Pont Aven, Quimper, Rennes and Saint Brieuc.
The kouign amann (an oh-so-amazing buttery, baked Breton pastry), macarons and chocolate were heavenly. There are no additives, preservatives or artificial ingredients in the baked goods.
The mini kouign-amanns called kougnettes are so cute and come in 14 different flavors.
The only regret we have now is that we didn’t try every single item in the shop. There’s so much more to grab here: cookies, lollipops, galettes…
6, rue Saint-Vincent
35400 Saint Malo France
Telephone Number: +33 (0)2 99 40 57 62
Continue reading the post to see more photos.
Bus Tour in Paris
You’ve seen the bright, double-decker, in-your-face Paris tour bus navigating the windy streets and massive roundabouts of Paris scooting around wide-eyed tourists desperate to take in every single one of the most famous Paris landmarks, all in the shortest amount of time. They’re hard to miss. While some tourists would rather set their hair on fire than get on one of these, there are others who swear by their virtues. It’s not really something I’d ever thought I’d be taking a ride on, but when we had a visitor from Japan, she could only stay in Paris for 2 days. What to do? If she didn’t HAVE to see all of the landmarks, we surely wouldn’t have done it but she did, and so we thought this was the most likely way to pull it off.
I have to admit that it’s kind of excellent for those specific situations and we had the best time riding it (ride on the upper deck!) and being able to get out at any number of stops (then get back on) There are many buses so you’ll only need to wait about 10 minutes at each stop during the summer to catch another bus, 20 minutes during the winter. The entire tour, if you stay on the bus the whole time, takes approximately two hours and 15 minutes. That’s quick, particularly if you think that during that time you could’ve been waiting in line just to get on the Eiffel Tower. I exaggerate but you get what I mean.
You have the possibility of stopping at nine different places: 1. Trocadéro, 2. Champ de Mars, 3. Louvre, 4. Notre-Dame, 5. Orsay, 6. Opéra, 7. Champs Elysées-Etoile, 8. Grand Palais and 9. Eiffel Tower. The earliest buses start between 9:30am and 10:30am with the last buses stopping between 6:25pm and 10:16pm. See the hours and stops here. Note: Weekend and week day hours differ slightly, so do check the hours carefully.
Audio guides are available in several languages and you can download the tour’s mp3 from the website here in advance if you want to hear the guide from your own mp3 player.
You can spread your trip over two days (it’s an unlimited 2 day pass), so for the price of 24 € (Adult fare) and 12 € (kids 4 to 12 fare), you might just be able to see a lot of stuff in a little amount of time. Buy your tickets online to receive an additional 10% off.
Paris Bus Tour (Les cars rouges)