Joni Mitchell once sang about Paris, “I wouldn’t want to stay here it’s too old and cold and settled in its ways”. It’s a line that often comes to mind when I look up at a menacing gray sky day after day in this gloomy town. Then without warning, the sun shines and all the gloom dissipates like some foggy memory. Paris positively glitters when basked in sunlight. So in my attempt this afternoon to profiter du soleil, a friend and I set out for brunch at Le Fumoir followed by a leisurely walk along the Seine and through the Marais. It’s hard not too fall back in love with Paris on a day like today. I wonder how long it will take for these sunny endorphins to wear off again…
Le Fumoir reinterprets the concept of American brunch with an added French twist. The 21 € prix fixe menu starts off with a glass of juice, a French pressed coffee, and a basket of breads and pastries with fresh raspberry jam. The savory main course comes next followed by the dessert course. You have to respect the French tradition of a three course meal, no matter the meal.
An otherwise classy establishment, with wood floors, plush leather benches and chairs, and loaded book shelves, some of its murals are a bit suspect. Even with a life sized Rhinoceros painted on the wall, the peak-a-boo nipple pointedly asserts itself as the focus of the scene.
On Ile St. Louis there lives a pair of fat white swans. They must be among the most photographed swans in the world because hoards of people were stopping traffic and risking a tumble into the Seine in order to snap a picture. I was waiting for those foul fowl (ha!) to lunge at that nosy photographer but they couldn’t be bothered. They couldn’t have cared less about their cooing audience. A French swan is still first and foremost French after all.
After the Ile we wandered over to St. Paul and stumbled upon an upscale brocante, or flea market.
Antique dolls are frightening. So I can understand wanting to behead them. But then to keep the heads!? I suppose it’s an effective way to send a message to all the other creepy dolls in the world: “Don’t mess with me doll. I eat heads like yours for breakfast. Out of a picnic basket no less.” That should show them who’s boss.
There isn’t anything more hateful than a person who doesn’t cry when ole yeller dies. Ole Yeller was a noble beast to be sure and his death merited a ceremonious tear-shedding. But if you don’t well up with sorrow every time you see the bloodshot, woeful eyes of a stout basset hound, then you’re a cold-hearted monster. No question about it.
21 € three course for Sunday brunch.
22 € three course menu for lunch, 32 € for dinner.
6 rue de l’amiral Coligny in the 1st
01 42 92 00 24