Monday, October 30, 2006

Me and Eva

Lobby of a luxury hotel in *****..

No lies. Today, just after lunchbreak, our PR manager came by and said, by the way, Eva Herzigova will be here in 30 minutes to take photos with you for next week's ***** *****. That info was shocking/exciting/terrifying enough in itself, without the hidden future catch.

She came. Dressed in a ruffled/little bit uptight white, ruffled lace top, and strangely burlap-bagesque dresswrap thing.

I was on the phone speaking with a client, checking her out from the corner of my eye.

Then the dress dropped. Time in the lobby stopped. Shell-shocked, passing-by businessmen gawked.

My trousers levitated.

Tibetan monks got nothing on me.

Saturday, October 28, 2006


Opened a few weeks ago by the Queen disco team in what was formerly the Chicago Pizza Pie Factory, this 250 seat bar/lounge looks to be a future hot-spot. Clubby clientelle, poofs, hot young bartendeuses, and flexible opening times will make this quartier a little more interesting.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Carte Blanche

Here are a few photos from my (belated) lunch at Carte Blanche this afternoon. I've been wanted to try this place for ages, but have only just got around to it. This small néobistrot, located in the culinary hinterlands of the 9th district, was opened a year ago by Claude Dupont, former front of house manager at Pierre Gagnaire, and former Beauvilliers chef Jean-François Renard. All in all a pleasant table with a mildly creative 38 Euros mini tasting menu.

First course was a carpaccio of beef on a bed of salad greens and Italian breadsticks.

Followed by a very fresh carpaccio of coquilles St. Jacques on a bed of freshly cubed mangos and green apple

Next, the main dish of fresh fish with salad and tomates confits

Followed by an excellent mint/strawberry cream dessert and warm madeleines

Nothing crazily creative, but a nice, discreet place with friendly service and gentle on the wallet.

Carte Blanche
6, rue Lamartine, 75009 Paris
Telephone: 01 48 78 12 20

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Gastronomy is the New Cocaine

I've said this for ages.

Chez Papa

The low level collective euphoria in Chez Papa last evening reminded me of a middle-class Amerian chain, themed steakhouse, a sort of Disney World of the palate. Packed –to-the-rafters, Chez Papa is part of a small chain of restaurants in Paris specializing in cuisine from the Sud Ouest. A friend and colleague, who once lived in my neighborhood suggested I try it. I did a few weeks ago for lunch, and rather enjoyed one of their jumbo salads, which was a pretty good deal, so I decided to dine and check out the rest of the menu. Disappointment. Despite the mass of interenet blurbs on what a "good value” it was, Chez Papa struck me as a simulacrum of a rustic Sud Ouest restaurant, with mediocre, mass-produced dishes, a kitchen full of African immigrants, and a clientele , rolling their eyes in joy, with no clue, under the black stare of the omnipresent partron’s Big Brother-like portrait. Papa doesn’t even exist

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Nietzsche Family Circle

And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Liza restaurant Paris

Lamb Aux Cinq Epices with Rice

Caviar d'Aubergines

Lamb Tartar with Parsley

Kebbah (spicy grilled lamb sausages) with side of hummus

This was a great little place. Lately, everyone has been updating and "modernizing" the world's great cuisines, and in Paris there are examples of this everywhere - whether it be French , Italian, any number of Asian "fusion" establishments, North African, etc, but until now, Lebanese cuisine has escaped this trend, visitors being forced to eat at Diwan, Noura, or any of a number of other tourist-ridden establishments.

Liza is a breath of fresh air, not only for the light, design/traditional décor, and the friendly service, but for the quality cuisine (kitchen overseen by the former chef of London's Fakkreldine), fine wines, and easy ambience.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Nirvana Lounge Rebranding

**sorry, lost out -- it's called the Rival Deluxe, now--- too bad..**

I must admit the genius of the Costes Klan in choosing me to rename the Nirvana Lounge... hint, it rhymes with "hilt"...