Greetings dear readers and friends. We’re enjoying a pretty typical spring here in the south of France – sunshine, showers, sunshine again, and then more rain… which means that our garden will soon be in full bloom and the whole region of Provence will be alive with wildflowers and greenery. Springtime is pretty spectacular in this corner of the world.
And if we’re looking for more beauty, and inspiration, I’m thrilled to be able to feature the book, A Table in Paris: The Cafés, Bistros, and Brasseries of the World’s Most Romantic City, on the blog today. The name alone is enough to get our imaginations going, and whet our appetites, for a trip to the City of Light. Author John Donohue, an artist and writer who lives in New York, and whose articles and cartoons have been featured in The New Yorker, the New York Times, and Barron’s, brings us a delightful sampling of some of the most iconic restaurants and bistros in Paris. Taking the reader on a visual tour through the city’s arrondissements, the author offers his artistic interpretation of each eclectic destination – from elegant Michelin-star level “haute cuisine” to hidden gems like Paris’s first authentic taqueria.
Each establishment comes to life thanks to John Donohue’s “loose and evocative” illustration style and accompanying notes. This book is a visual stunner and feels like holding a piece of Paris’s gastronomic history in your hands. Here’s an excerpt from the author’s take on Chez L’Ami Jean bistro in the 7th arrondissement:
"The self-taught chef Stéphane Jego, protégé of Yves Camdeborde during the heydey of Le Régalade during the last century, took over this historic Basque rugby pub in 2003, and has been putting his own stamp on the future of bistronomie ever since."
I don’t know about you, but Chez L’Ami Jean just went straight to the top of my “to-do” list for Paris… along with about 20 other restaurants featured in the book.
A Table in Paris also features recommendations from locals, visitors, and experts, who’ve been fortunate to dine is some of the coolest cafés, bistros, and restaurants la capitale has to offer. Having dined at a grand total of three (Bouillon Chartier, Café de la Paix, and Candelaria), I count myself pretty lucky… I still have a lifetime of amazing food and Parisian flare to explore.
If you’d like to enter to win a copy of A Table in Paris, please leave a comment below and tell us about an unforgettable meal you’ve had (in Paris or elsewhere).
One winner will be chosen at random, using random.org, on Saturday, April 24th, 2021.
Good luck, bonne chance, and best wishes from belle Provence!