Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A Walk Down our Rue

After a week in Africa, returning home to our little piece of Paris reminded me off how much I truly love our home here.  Each time I walk down Rue de l'Annonciation (our street) I find something new that I love about it.  Part of the of the street is pedestrian only and it turns into a market of sorts on Saturdays and Sundays.  From Ipad cases to a furniture upholstery, you can find almost any gadget or service you are looking for.

During the week, it continues to bustle with the two grocery stores, two boulangeries, a fromagerie, a butcherie, a librarie (book store), a chocolate shop, a wine shop, a creperie, a gourmet coffee store, a fresh produce market, a flower shop, a store that sells solely caviar (only in Paris),a store that sells solely agneau (lamb...also only in Paris), a home decor store, an antique store, a depot vente (vintage clothing store), and even a American style mall (complete with H&M and the GAP).  And on Monday's, when the rest of the Rue is asleep, Starbucks and McDonald's come to the rescue.  This jewel of a street could not be more perfect for us because it has all the picturesque Parisian shops we adore along with the conveniences of America that, at times, we desperately need.

Let's take a walk down our Rue....

We will start at our front door.

See the little green door between Pastavino (an amazing little Italian store where we occasionally splurge for handmade ravioli) and Mode Vision (amazing little optical store where I hope to eventually splurge on a new pair of Tom Ford's) well that is our little door. It leads into a courtyard and you enter our apartment from the courtyard (I will invite you in soon... it is a work in progress at the moment).

I love the beautiful detail above the door.

Now lets walk down the street.

Of course, your remember our neighbors across the street. Aux Merveilleux.  The little devil cakes... that I am tempted by every single day....that are in the top 10 best things I've ever eaten.  It's a love hate relationship.

Next to Pastavino is Librairie Fontaine.  The French version of Goodnight Moon is in the window this week (Bonsoir Lune).  I love that that book transcends all cultures. 

This is the creperie.  On the weekends, the crepe guys stands out front tempting me with nutella crepes as he makes them fresh for each customer. We haven't actually eaten here yet because the Mr. does not love crepes.  Hopefully I win another bet soon. 

This is the gourmet coffee shop across from the creperie. We have not shopped here yet, but hope to explore soon.

Then there is the chocolate shop, Jeff de Bruge.  I think I would frequent this shop a lot more if Aux Merveilleux had not stolen the show. 

Seriously, all they really sell is caviar.

This is our favorite place to grab a drink.  They sell fresh oysters out front on the weekends.  It also has a nice courtyard in the back. I anticipate frequent visits in the Spring.

The other shop after my heart. They have a delicious gruyere and also the best buerre sel (salted butter). I am determined to try every cheese in the store before the end of the year.

Next door you will find the beautiful flower shop and then the butcherie on the other side.

The tulips on the bottom left, uhhh, they make my heart melt.

 Across the way you will find the wine shop. 

And finally, Maison Gosselin.  Absolutely fab! I think this mecca of fresh produce turned me onto spinach.  Everything is SO fresh because the shipments come in daily.  We are obsessed with the blood oranges right now.  So delicious.

So, that is the pedestrian only part of the Rue.  If you take a left out of our door, there is even more to explore.

Beginning with Passy Plaza. Our home away from home.  Since it houses the Starbucks and Inno, the grocery store, we spend quite a lot of time here. (It is the American style mall on the street). 

Across the way is a pizza joint that we have also not tried yet. It looks like it has potential to be the 2 Amy's/Reginellis of Paris though. We will see....

All my best friends live here.  Chanel. Louis. Dior. Hermes. Prada. If only I got to see them more often.  For some reason the Mr. prefers me to hang out with H&M.

We need another niece or nephew.  I promise to spoil them with lots of French baby clothes. Who's in? Mary? Keenan? Anna (just kidding!!)

This is another one of my favorites that we are dying to try.  It's a darling little grocery that serves dinner.  Supposedly they have divine foie gras and terrines (which the Mr. is into these days!)  We are supposed to have a double date here soon. Can't wait.

Gorgeous church down the street.  We haven't been to a service here as of yet, but I promise that I will be the first one in pew as soon as I learn to speak French.

Great place to get a burger and glass of wine.  We ate here on our first night in the neighborhood and really enjoyed it.  It sits on the corner next to the church in the bottom of this gorgeous building. I love the rounded corners. I can only imagine what it must be like inside one of those apartments!

Next door is Passy Tarte which serves exclusively tartes and quiches.

And last, but certainly not least, Susan's Place.  Our very own Cactus Cantina in Paris.  You can only imagine how excited the Mr. was to see fajitas on a menu down the street from our house! (And of course we have been here....as well as the Chinese place a block over....are you starting to see the pattern? Italian/Crepes/things the Mrs. likes - 0.  Mexican/Chinese/things the Mr. likes - 2.  It is just too blatant not to point out). 

And so the tour comes to an end.  If you were to keep walking down the street you would hit Rue Raynouard (after passing a Pizza Hut) and find the Seine behind a wall of buildings, which brings me to my last favorite thing about the neighborhood.  If you keep walking a few blocks down to the nearest metro stop and jump on the train, you will enjoy one of the very best views of the Eiffel Tower.  For less than 2 euro a ride, you find yourself gliding across the Seine with the Eiffel Tower popping up out of nowhere on your left and then building after building of gorgeous French architecture.  I think it's one of the best kept secrets in town.

I love this old picture of the metro leaving our station from the 1950's.  You can see that the train is raised enough so that you can see the top of all the buildings, a view that you don't get from walking down the streets.  It's truly exquisite.

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