I wasn’t sure if my husband would like the Alaïa exhibit, but it was a big hit. He analyzed each of the outfits as to whether or not they would have made good first date outfits. My favorite outfit was the jacket with a crocodile skin attached to the back as though it was a tail-coat. Talk about fierce glamour!
We had lunch at the Petit Palais. It was too cool for the garden terrace, which did take away much of the charm, but it was still a viable spot for a meal.
After lunch, we saw the Jordaens exhibit. Before we checked out the Dutch master, however, we examined a collection of dolls created by designers as a fundraiser for the children of Darfur organized by UNICEF. They were going to be sold at auction on December 2, 2013, but even though you missed this auction, this is an annual event. You’ll be able to bid on an original work again next year.
We walked to Angelina, the great tea room on the rue de Rivoli, for a cup of their rich hot chocolate. On our way there, we passed the Christmas market on the Champs Élysée. I must say that I was rather disappointed. For the most part, the stalls sold cheesy carnival trash, not artisanal items.
We walked back to the Marais and had dinner at Crêperie Suzette (24 rue des Franc-Bourgeois). I’ve eaten here before and find it to be a reliable spot for a quick and tasty meal. This evening was no exception. We each enjoyed a savory crêpe and then finished off our meal with their namesake crêpe Suzette.
Our morning involved the exhibit about Napoléon’s sisters at the musée Marmottan. It was a great marriage of the setting and the exhibit. Napoléon clearly took an interest in each of his siblings, taking the time to counsel one of his three sisters on the fleeting nature of beauty. When he was banished to the island of Elba, his siblings came and went, establishing a full, formal court in exile.
Lunch was at Grand Bouillon Racine, 3 rue Racine. My entrée was filet de canette aux abricots et griottes, or duckling breast with apricots and morello cherries. It was quite scrumptious.
Afterward, we had some serious shopping to do – chocolates. First, we went to the amazing Jean-Charles Rochoux for truffles. Then, we went to Chapon at 69 rue du Bac, the winner of the best chocolatier in Paris. (We prefer Rochoux’s truffles, hands down.) Not only does Chapon sell chocolates, they also sell rich chocolate mousse by the dish, just like ice cream. What a great idea! Now that I know about it, I’ll be a frequent visitor, as it’s near where I work in the summer. Window shopping and coffee at Les Éditeurs rounded off our afternoon.
For dinner, we went to Polidor. The entire reason for this choice was to introduce my husband to one of my favorite desserts of all time – bavarois au cassis (bav-ar-wah oh kass-iss), which means black currant Bavarian cream. A bavarois refers to a cold, molded cream-based dessert; this one is served with a coulis of black currant sauce. I’ve been raving about it for over two years now. That’s a lot of press to live up to, but I needn’t have worried that it would disappoint. My husband was just as much of a fan as I am.
I’ll conclude with our final day in Paris in a subsequent post.