Where the Wild Things Grow
The owners of one of Paris’s biggest roasters, Belleville Brûlerie, gave new life to a tiny neighborhood café: La Fontaine de Belleville, opened this year. It’s got all the charm of a Parisian café and the delicious coffee of a hipster coffee shop. A slice of their French toast with a fresh cup of filter coffee on the terrace is the most perfect way to start any summer day. In the evening, locals soak up the last few rays of sun with a short but solid list of cocktails and tapas.
Île Saint Louis
One of three excellent restaurants in the famed Four Seasons Hotel, the brand new L'Orangerie opened just in time for summer 2016. The restaurant remains accessible despite the chic setting, but doesn't sacrifice any glamor. The seating overlooks the Marble Courtyard, which means al fresco dining without sucking on car fumes (something of a rarity in the city). Seafood, lamb, and fowl headline the signature dishes, keeping things light as the temperatures rise.
Canal St Martin
The concept is simple: choose any starters and the meat for your bibimbap filled with veggies and rice, then head to the Canal Saint Martin to enjoy your Korean picnic. It’s summertime done right. If it happens to rain the day that you’re craving some kimchi -- and it often does -- the owners have a new restaurant with indoor seating on nearby rue Bichat, so you can always get your fix, despite the weather.
Easily one of the must-try restaurants in Paris: Alain Ducasse’s Champeaux is a modern take on traditional brasserie fare, like escargot and duck parmentier. Housed in the renovated canopy at Les Halles, it pays homage to the days when this space was the center of food culture in Paris. It’s open from 11:30AM on, so take advantage of the afternoon sun as it pours through the windows.
Stop by Palissade to dine (and drink cocktails -- don't forget the cocktails!) before this spot is overrun by the rest of Paris. A tiny little space, located behind the Saint Louis Hospital, this future hotspot features global cuisine like French and Japanese fusion, as well as Mexican and Portuguese brunch on weekends. Cocktails and artisanal beers set it apart from most run-of-the-mill bars, with a few non-French wines and sake on the menu.
A little slice of Melbourne in Montmartre, Hardware Société brings the best of down under to the Parisian table -- and it’s all about the daylong brunch. Fruit-topped French toast, eggs, bacon, salmon, and other staples make appearances on the menu, filled out by fresh French pastries. The cold brew coffee and chai lattes may have an Australian flare, but this is still Paris, after all: the windows swing open when the weather cooperates, and there’s no mistaking what city we’re in as brunchers spill out onto the streets.
Keep it light and fresh with ceviche from this eatery near rue Montorgueil. When it's too hot to think about cheese and duck, go for a meal of crisp granny smith apple, avocado, and tuna, or octopus served with lemon and red onions. Natural light filters into the spacious dining room, which is arranged with mismatched chairs and tables. Walk in for lunch or reserve for dinner. They recently opened a second address in the 10th because the Parisian appetit for Peruvian food has historically been insatiable.
The kitchen here may not call to foodies, but cocktail fans who appreciate a view will definitely want to clamor to this BHV department store. Each summer, the rooftop hosts Le Perchoir, one of the city’s rare and raved-over rooftop bars. Light tapas -- think ham and cornichons -- are served with drinks ranging from Old Fashions to bottles of rosé. The views across the city, including the Eiffel Tower, will make any wait at the elevator to get up worth it -- assuming you manage to get in!
A hotspot all year round, this covered market is especially lively in the summer when the outdoor seating situation becomes less daunting. More of a food hall than a market, Marché des Enfants Rouges houses stalls selling everything from couscous to bento boxes, Caribbean dishes to Lebanese sandwiches. The only problem is braving the oftentimes lengthy lines, but it’s worth it for some of the most diverse dining you’ll find in one spot in Paris.
Mull over the playful wine list for hours if you want, but the best bet is to let the servers guide you. After a bottle or two, move on to food, as the small plates change with the seasons… but the cheese plate is always a good idea. Grab a seat on the terrace early in the evening. before the crowds start to fight over free space, and smile smugly as you and your party decide on yet another bottle of wine.
There’s something cool and calming about this industrial chic restaurant that beckons on a hot summery day. There’s no terrace, but it’s better to be inside, focused on the food. A la carte meals are fine and all, but if you want to go big, try the tasting menu at dinner -- sit back and just let the food come to you. Daily offerings keep it exciting, but staples include half plates of fresh ceviche and sesame grilled Portobello mushrooms.
Not all worthwhile places are new kids on the block. Some, like La Closerie de Lilas, have been around for their share of Parisian summers: this joint is famous for being a favorite haunt of Ernest Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald. The Left Bank institution has the perfect terrace for intimate dining, so go for the giant platter of seafood, which comes studded with crabs and shellfish, to really enjoy this historic -- but often overlooked -- Parisian establishment.
This is wrong… so wrong. But screw it: Five Guys is coming to Paris, and the French are excited. A wave of Parisian burger joints tried to mimic the kinds of burgers found in the US over the past few years, but to no avail (barring the Camion Qui Fume). Otherwise, they’re too small, too expensive, and too fussy. Hopefully, that’s about to change. Five Guys opens up at the Bercy Village this July, and is destined to attract more than just expats who miss their Shake Shacks and In-N-Outs.
In the charming asian quarter around metro Tolbiac there are heaps of restaurants where you can find great food. However, if you are looking for great food, go to Pho 14. It’s the one with a huge line outside and a 45 minute wait for -- you guessed it -- a pho, but it is worth it. The service is slightly terse and a bit rushed, but -- I repeat -- it’s worth it. Especially when it’s cold outside (baby).
Champ de Mars
This unassuming bistro, surrounded by other unassuming bistros on the Avenue de la Motte-Piquet, is actually a gateway to bistro food heaven. Delicious salads, beautifully served like a piece of art and typical bistro food such as burgers and magret de canard with a certain je ne sais quoi will keep you coming back for more. Enjoy the flurry on the heated terrace and smile smugly at passing people who didn’t come in time to get a table.
Healthy, French-Japanese fusion bento boxes served on bamboo and white porcelain you say? Austere hipster atmosphere and menus on chalkboards? Come stand in line for the best weekend brunch or lunch in all of Paris and take the opportunity to pick up some fashion tips from the ridiculously well-dressed Parisians of the Haut Marais and go shopping in the area after finishing -- but don’t leave before enjoying a healthy (and tasty!) matcha cheesecake.
If you want to avoid standing in line at the fabled Chantier restaurant, pop around the corner and into the romantic Passage des Panoramas. This covered passage way, first opened in 1800, is home to a range of restaurant, but pass the chic Canard & Champagne and upscale Passage 53 (although both of these are places you might want to come back to later) and open the slightly lop-sided door to Terroir et Burger. Full of charm, this restaurant will make you feel like you are in a Truffaut film. Oh, and the food is awesome, too.
Gare du Nord
Ominously located right in front of the Gare du Nord, Terminus Nord is a well upkept remnant from an era when living straight across from the train station was a lavish way to show off your deep pockets. Beautifully decorated with mirrors, mosaic and art nouveau pictures Terminus Nord is rumored to have the best soupe à l’oignon (that’s onion soup to you) with perfectly rich bouillon, lightly browned cheese and that little hint of sherry that makes you feel right at home. The perfect plate at the perfect place on a cold winter’s evening. Romantic, too.
This brand spanking new space in the buzzing quartier of Porte Saint-Denis is decorated in muted colors, dark wood and a chic clientele. Mediterranean inspired small plates made to mix and match and an inspired cocktail list, concocted to complement the aforementioned cuisine. When you have got your fill, this is an excellent vantage point either you want to have drinks in a chichi bar in Haut Marais or show off your plaid flannel around Canal Saint-Martin.
In the village-like area hidden behind Cimitière du Père Lachaise this pastel colored local restaurant is frequented by locals who enjoy the excellent, classically French, meals. The baked salmon with chorizo cream and crunchy parmesan on top is a treat. Add the soft barstools and friendly staff and this is easily a local resto worth a trip on the metro for.