Saturday, 14 July 2007

happy birthday darling!

Today is S's birthday, and the good people of France are so nice that they always organise a parade and fireworks especially for the occasion!

Last year I did actually take S to Paris for his birthday - our minuscule hotel was very close to the Eiffel Tower and we enjoyed the most splendid sight of the fireworks. A French girlfriend had recommended me Le Comptoir du Relais, a lovely tiny bistro at the Carrefour de l'Odeon, where we had S's birthday dinner. Which was absolutely wonderful, with the token rude waitress of course (it just wouldn't be Paris without them, would it). And lots of wine.

We didn't have any particular plans for the weekend - the weather was amazing and we just roamed around and relaxed, enjoying delicious pastries, croissants and confit de canard all weekend long, in the tiniest unassuming bistros. With polite and friendly waiting staff, which threw us a bit, but we were quickly reassured by our encounter with a rude waiter in a creperie who totally refused to speak French with us.

All by accident (a good thing of wandering around a city at leisure) and long BB (before blog), I discovered Sadaharu Aoki's shop in the Rue Vaugirard and E. Dehillerin, where I asked the shop people if I could move in but they wouldn't let me, so I had to settle for buying some baking moulds.

This year, S requested dinner at Locanda Locatelli for his birthday - he is quite a fan of the cookbook already and wanted to try the restaurant. I didn't take a camera with me, so no piccies, but I can assure you the whole experience was absolutely divine! The restaurant was very smart of course, but not in a stuck-up way, with extremely friendly and efficient staff who didn't rush us. And the food, ah, where to start! Home-made Parmesan grissini, a basket full of delicious breads, amazing salads with the perfect dressing and sweetest cherry tomatoes ever, wonderful calamari with chili and lots of garlic, lovely flaky monkfish, yummy baby cow, and delicious desserts. I of course tried the most unusual thing on the dessert menu, while S went straight for the vanilla ice cream. Which he declared to be the best one ever (in fact, his exact words were: 'eat this, Häagen-Dazs!'). No fancy schmancy dishes; everything was fairly simple (not the kind of simple you'd make at home though) but the ingredients were the freshest and bestest, top-notch quality. Another restaurant we can tick off our 'must try' list, but we've now moved it to our 'must go back' list.

Still itching to go back to Paris though.


Tartelette said...

Happy Birhtday S! and Happy National Day to me!! (no, we do not call it Bastille Day!)

Eggy said...

What a lovely blog you have, Inne! And I am tres enviously now, having read this post :-)

Rose said...

You are so funny! The French are so nice to S. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO HIM. BON ANNIVARSAIRE.

Anita said...

What a lovely thing to celebrate your birthday in Paris! I'm sure you must have wonderful memories!:)