The Sweetest Crumb

Archive of ‘Reviews’ category

Dining in Paris – Shu, Les Cocottes, Le Trumilou

Since we moved to Paris at the end of January, we have loved discovering the city and all the delicious dining options. For anyone who is wondering where we’ve been eating, here are a few of our most memorable dinners from the past 6 weeks.

Shu

One of the first things we did after the big move to Paris is go for dinner at Shu. We saw this cute Japanese restaurant on our last visit to Paris and were immediately drawn to it because of the tiny door you need to go through to get inside. I really wanted to try it last year but unfortunately we found it towards the end of our trip and were unable to secure a reservation. I was so disappointed last year that Sean tried to cheer me up, saying that when we move to Paris Shu would be the first place we go for dinner. I brushed off his promises, thinking that we would never seriously move to Paris. However, a year and a half later we are here and this is indeed the first place we went for dinner – as promised.

Shu has three set menus to choose from, which all include kushiague – different types of meat, seafood and vegetables deep fried on skewers.

Overall,  while the meal was good, I would have liked to see a few more fresh options included in the set menus to balance out the deep fried foods – I found the meal a bit too heavy and salty. However, the staff was very friendly and since the dinner was more symbolic for us than anything else, I loved it.


8, rue Suger 75006 Paris
+33 (0)1 46 34 25 88
Monday – Saturday
18h30 – 23n30

 

Les Cocottes

Our second dining experience in Paris was at Les Cocottes. We read about the restaurant on David Lebovitz’s list of Paris restaurant recommendations. To be honest we’ve been relying quite heavily on all of David Lebovitz‘s articles on living and eating in Paris. He has articles on everything from tipping in France, to public transport to where to find groceries. They are so helpful for anyone who is visiting or moving to Paris and I can’t recommend them enough. And after spending so much time on his site, I was stoked to meet him at a book signing last month!

Ok now back to Les Cocottes. This restaurant is in the 7th arrondissement, about 5 minutes walking from the Eiffel Tower. We had great service here and were pleased to see that the prices were actually really reasonable for a restaurant in such a popular tourist area. I found the food fantastic and this is probably my favourite dinner to date in Paris.

Since they don’t take reservations and the small space can get crowded, we sat at the bar and started with a few glasses of wine.

Based on the name of the restaurant, you may have guessed that it is known for dishes served in cocottes, fireproof dishes in which individual sized meals are cooked and served. We decided to share the potatoes farcie (stuffed) with pied de porc (pig’s feet) cocotte. I’d never had this type of meat before but our waitress assured us that it was delicious, tender and not fatty. The potatoes were cooked perfectly, caramelized on top. The meat was as delicious as she had promised and I would have gladly eaten the entire cocotte myself. We also decided to share “La vraie salade César Ritz”. This is the restaurant’s take on the traditional César salad and while it photographed terribly, it tasted fantastic. The salad had a generous amount of chicken, hard boiled eggs and croutons. The dressing was perfectly rich and creamy. This salad was really memorable and I would gladly return to order it again. Overall, the dining experience here was excellent and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Les Cocottes!


135, rue Saint-Dominique, 75007 Paris
from 12h00 to 15h30, from 18h30 to 22h30 (23h fridays and saturdays)

 

Le Trumilou

Le Trumilou is a small bistro which serves classic French dishes. The restaurant is fairly casual and dishes are simple and unpretentious yet the meals are comforting and satisfying. The menu is very meat-focused with several wild game options.


We went with the fixed menu of the day. I started with the shrimp and avocado cream. This was a very refreshing choice, but I would have liked to see a bit more strong flavours used in the dish.

Sean went with the charcuterie plate. I am usually a bit hesitant of various jellified meats but I must say I thought the three choices served as part of the appetizer were really delicious. Again, the plate was very simple, but the quality of the meat was evident, making for a tasty appetizer.

For the entree, I went with the guinea fowl. The meat was stewed with potatoes and a flavourful broth. It was perfectly tender, aromatic and falling off the bones. Sean went with the goat (sorry no photos) which was well-prepared in a simple sauce to highlight the flavours of the meat itself.

Overall, we enjoyed Le Trumilou. It is a welcoming French bistro that serves up well-prepared classics at reasonable prices. This is not the type of place where you are likely to see the chefs experimenting with new flavours or modern dishes. However, when you have a hankering for a traditionally prepared cut of good quality meat, this is the place to go.


84 Quai de l’Hôtel de ville, 75004 Paris
00 33 (0)1 42 77 63 98

Finding Food in Lloydminster

I am back in Edmonton for the weekend and so happy! As you guys may already know, the Global Visions film festival is on this weekend in Edmonton! This is Canada’s longest running documentary film festival and I had a chance to volunteer with them in 2012. Sadly, since I am working out of town, volunteering wasn’t really an option this year. However, being back today and Sunday, I am going to make the most of my time and try to squeeze in watching as many documentaries as I can. The line up of films this year looks fantastic and I strongly recommend you guys check them out if you are in the Edmonton area.

Ok, now back to my small town travels…

I have to share that I came across a gem in Lloydminster! I was expecting the food options to be fairly limited in a town the size of Lloydminster, especially when it came down to healthy eating. I even made a batch of morning glory muffins to take with me and got all stocked up with organic snacks before I set off for my travels. However, I was so pleasantly surprised to find The Root: Community Emporium in Lloydminster.

This restaurant has been open for about a year and, from what I could see, they are doing a fabulous job. They use local, fresh ingredients and the dishes clearly show that they are prepared with a lot of care. They have both a daily farm and vegetarian feature. The Root also has live music and art displayed on all the walls. I loved this place so much that I came back a second time during my week in Lloyd.

The first time I ordered trout with mashed potatoes and a broccoli/zucchini soup. They let me know they were out of trout and had pickerel instead – that was fine with me. If anything, it was a good sign that they order their ingredients fresh and don’t have a huge stock pile of frozen stuff so when it’s out, it’s out!

The fish was perfectly cooked and reminded me of the fresh fish we’ve made at home when my dad comes home from fishing trips.

The soup was light and comforting. I love vegetables so the combination of broccoli and zucchini was perfect.

(Sorry for the sub-par photos. I only had my phone camera with me and the lighting was not ideal)

The second time, I ordered the vegetarian feature which was an eggplant parmesan. It came with lentil salad and a pear gorgonzola green salad. This meal was also delicious (although the eggplant was a bit too salty for my taste). The salads were perfect though. I was especially in love with the lentils.

The Root also serves premium loose leaf tea (I believe from Banff Tea Co.) which I found a rarity in Lloydminster.

Overall, I would gladly return for another meal (and probably will since I am returning to Lloyd on Monday morning). The food was the best I’ve had in the area, the service was friendly and the restaurant was cute and eclectic – definitely a find in Lloydminster!

 

Yoga and Cake

I just got back from a Moksha yoga class and it felt so good to be able to sweat and de-stress after work. I don’t really make New Years resolutions but I figured the new year would be a good time to think about my priorities. While I really love exercising, especially yoga and boxing, too often other responsibilities and commitments get in the way. I’ve caught myself cancelling plans to work out because I’m working late and exhausted. So it’s my goal to make fitness a higher priority this winter. Hopefully I can stick with it!

I could definitely use some more fitness time after eating a bunch of the rum and coke cupcakes I made for New Years. While they didn’t taste at all like coke, and barely tasted like rum, they were super delicious. And really I don’t know how the rum and coke flavour didn’t come out since I am convinced I used lots of both… Anyways, I have left the recipe at my place and am at the boyfriend’s tonight but I will share it soon since the cupcakes really were fantastic (I ate half of one before yoga in my car tonight, hoping that no one would see me). But since the cupcake recipe and photos aren’t with me right now, I figured I would talk about something else we enjoyed over the holidays – the signature Duchess cake from Duchess Bakeshop in Edmonton… amazing!

Ok, perhaps I am slightly biased since I absolutely love everything that comes out of their oven, but, honestly, who wouldn’t? The Duchess is their signature cake and comes in a unique domed shape. It is a chiffon cake with pastry cream, raspberry and vanilla whip cream (where you can clearly see the specks of real vanilla bean) layers. The flavours compliment each other perfectly. The cake isn’t too sweet or heavy which makes it the kind of cake where it’s hard to stop eating… The whole cake is also covered in a layer of green marzipan which makes it look flawless.

So seriously if you guys haven’t tried this awesome cake and are craving something sweet and amazing, give it a try. If you don’t want a whole cake to yourself, there is also a smaller 4″ size. And if you decide to eat it in your car right before yoga, I won’t tell.