Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Ruby chocolate, Salon du Chocolat 2018

Last night Bear and I went to the inauguration of this year's SALON DU CHOCOLAT at porte de Versailles. Its open from today until November 4th so you're not too late for chocolate immersion.
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Where ever you turn there are reminders around Paris.
The newest hottest trend this year is 'ruby' chocolate originating from BARRY CALLEBAUT, a Belgian-Swiss company. Made from the ruby cocoa bean, the chocolate's taste is both sweet and sour. Its made from unfermented cocoa beans which often have a natural redish-pink color.

Shards of Ruby chocolate


Fruitiness is the thing this season. Adding red fruits to ruby chocolate.
If the chocolate wasn't the new ruby flavor it had dehydrated strawberries. Red is IN!
Chunks of dried berries from a Japanese chocolatier
A twist from Fauchon, not on the ruby bandwagon. This buche de noel is made with beets (betterave)! For display purposes only. No tastes on offer.
Ruby-colored crepes topped with whipped cream
Not to worry. Of course there was plenty of trés riche French chocolate. Here squared Opera cakes from Duchene.
Exquisite pastries on offer. More than 200 top pastry chefs will be demonstrating their refined skills. 500 exhibitors from 5 continents. BEAR did not make it to every display last night

We somehow missed the fashion show but if you're clever you can catch it every day at 5pm.
George Larnicol, the kouign amann king from Brittany was making wonderfully savory bites with regional Boskoff carmelized onions - a nice relief from all the sweet flavors. Bear was smitten. If you're in Paris do visit. Thanks for reading Parisbreakfast. 
If you'd like to receive Parisbreakfast letters, maps and watercolors in your mailbox 📮, look in my Etsy shop. 
Bisous bisous

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Paris at night

I was going to post on something different but this weekend has been a sad one. I learned my sister was good friends with a victim of the synagogue shooting in Pittsburg.
The beauty of Paris can be restorative. Now I'm walking more I'm discovering more of the island I'm so lucky to live on.
Sometimes visitors ask me if its OK to walk around Paris at night. I think it is.
The calm. The peacefulness. The lights on the Seine. It grounds you.
Right now the wind is blustery outside. We're having an early taste of Winter this weekend and its too cold for a night walk.
Sending you warm wishes ☕️ From Paris XOXO Carol and 🐻

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Breakfast in Paris

NEWS ALERT! The October letter from Paris is in la Poste for those wondering what happened...
You would think painting breakfast would be a cinch for me. It was not
Rob and Bonnie took me for an exceptional petit dejeuner at SAINT REGIS CAFE on Ile Saint Louis at 6, rue jean du Bellay 75004 I was surprised.
They even get their jam from Cafe Senequier in Saint Tropez! I'm pretty sure that's a first.
I usually get the standard fare...the basic formule.
So many sketches later...
And it took 3 finishes till I got one I liked. Maybe I'm rusty painting breakfasts?
The October paris breakfast map was a whiz on the other hand.  Course I did have to eat a lot of scones and croissants. Pure torture ;((
The scones at Cafe Shakespeare and Co come highly recommended. At 37, rue de la Bucherie 75005
Guess what? Next door at LE PETIT PONT you get the same Notre Dame views as at Shakespeare (minus the delish scones) maybe the cheapest p'tit dej in Paris for a mere 4€.
Going much more high end is CLAUS PARIS. They now have a branch at 2, rue Clement 75006
They only do breakfast and superbly. On the weekends they ONLY do brunch so fait attention!
I loved the red, white and blue striped china at old CAFE DANTON at Odeon. PD was OK but the cup and saucer was to die for.
CAFE BONAPARTE used to have adorable red/white/blue china. No more. Why change? Still their breakfasts are excellent. 42, rue bonaparte 75006
CAFE DU MARCHÉ can not be bad on the corner of rue de buci and rue de Seine. I have yet to try it so it didn't make my Left Bank breakfast map. More breakfast maps to come by the way.
I have had breakfast here a very long ago with TONGUE IN CHEEK. Good too but there simply wasn't space.
BENOIT CASTEL's new fabulous boulangerie in the 20th at 150 rue de Menilmontant requires its own map and letter. You can get lunch, brunch and breakfast here. Bus 96 stops nearby.
Thank you Coco Jobard for taking me! More to come soon.
Thanks for reading Parisbreakfast. 
You can get both Parisbreakfast letters 💌 and maps (watercolors too) in your mailbox 📮, look in my Etsy shop. 
Belle journée bises d'automne

Friday, October 19, 2018

Bagues d'Homme de Yves Gastou, l'Ecole Van Cleef Arpels

L'ECOLE VAN CLEEF ARPELS can always be depended upon for astonishing exhibits. Run, don't walk to see the ring collection of YVES GASTOU. His gallery of rare antiques is still on 12, rue Bonaparte next to the school of Beaux Arts. But 669 rings from his collection of a thousand can be seen for the first time at l'Ecole, 6, rue Danielle Casanova until 30 November. Above the pink topaz of a bishop.
'Jewelry is a talisman, becoming part of the wearer just as it bestows strength and confidence'.
Monsieur Gastou at the opening
There are seven themes in his collection. Here neoclassical rings. Other themes represented; chivalry (signet rings), Gothic, religion, vanitas, ethnic jewelry and curiosities.
An amazing display for the rings is in the shape of a medieval cross, especially designed by interior architect Jérome Thénot.
Gastou grew up near CARCASSONE. Medieval themes of Jean d'Arc and armor abound.
I spent only a week drawing in Carcassone last year and felt positively medieval. Growing up nearby could definitely make one prone to myths, heraldry and armor.
These turret rings - did they hide poisons..? Every ring in the collection tells a story.
Some rings date back to Egypt. Gastou was given his first ring at age four. He started collecting seriously at sixteen.
Moroccan ethnic rings.
A surprise to see university or even high school signet rings.
And quite a collection of 70s biker's rings
The top of this ring opens to hold who knows what?
The hor d'oeuvres at l'ECOLE VAN CLEEF ARPELS are always jewel-like. They offer a host of excellent jewelry classes at all levels.
I did wonder briefly whether M. Gastou ever considered collecting the toy rings inside Cracker Jack boxes. Somehow I think not... a riveting experience to visit this exhibit and very highly recommended.Thanks for reading Parisbreakfast. If you'd like to receive Parisbreakfast letters, maps and watercolors in your mailbox 📮, look in my Etsy shop. 
Bonne Vendredi PBers!